Great North Road: cycling the old route from London to Edinburgh | Cycling holidays

[ad_1] As any cyclist will tell you, there’s something strangely uplifting about being on the road early. Mostly it’s a case of enjoying empty roads and morning light, but perhaps there’s a smidgeon of self-righteousness, too. Mamils have a lie in? Never. As we wheel our bikes out of the Olde Ship in the village … Read more

A week on the old smugglers’ trail in Spain and Portugal | Spain holidays

[ad_1] “This whole area is riddled with smugglers’ paths.” Pepe spread an arm out wide – some feat as we were cycling up a hill at the time – and indicated the expanse of undulating scrubland to our left. Peppered with cork oak trees, and with Spain’s sparsely populated Extremadura region immediately to the east, … Read more

10 of the best piers and promenades in the UK: readers’ travel tips | Beach holidays

[ad_1] Winning tip: Bangor, Gwynedd Bangor pier holds many memories for us. It’s the place where my husband lost his car keys 50 years ago. Luckily those were the days when you could hotwire a car (or in this case minivan) to start it. We return there often. The pier has breathtaking views of the … Read more

The Beach of Dreams trail left me dazzled by an Essex I never expected | Walking holidays

[ad_1] I stand aside to let a tractor go past down the lane and only then notice the field of sunflowers. There is a sign out front: Please help yourself. I wander up the side of the plot and stand among thousands of yellow flower heads, nodding gently in the breeze under an almost-blue sky. … Read more

Blyth spirit: a car-free break along the coast of Northumberland | Northumberland holidays

[ad_1] I’m swimming in the bracing sea near Blyth in Northumberland. A boat sails by, a tern flies overhead with a small silver fish in its beak, and I can feel more fish tickling my feet. Map of north-east England and Northumberland coast highlighting Blyth, Ashington and Warkworth The town’s South Beach has miles of … Read more

A cycle through Spanish history: retracing the 1941 Vuelta a España | Spain holidays

[ad_1] The temperature stood at 42C as I rode into Salamanca one dog-day afternoon a little over a year ago. After two and a half brutal days I had finally completed stage one of the 1941 Vuelta a España, a stage won in just under eight hours by the man who would go on to … Read more