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Holidays

Scotland Road Cycling Coast to Coast

Scotland
Available Departures: Jun, Aug

7 days from

US$3,400

without flights
Cycle
Guided Group
CHALLENGING CHALLENGING

One of the most challenging and spectacular rides in the UK, this Scottish Coast to Coast ride journeys 262 miles from Aberdeen to Applecross

Trip Code: WCMB
Holiday Grades

Our Holiday Grades Explained

To show the relative difficulty of our holidays, each trip is graded on a scale of 1 to 12, with 12 being the most challenging. Although we have tried to make our grading system as clear as possible, it cannot take into account your personal interests, abilities or experience. If you have any questions about the nature of a particular trip or its suitability for you, please read the 'Is this holiday for you?' section or contact us.

 1 - 3 LEISURELY
1 - 3 LEISURELY

Suitable for most people in good health, holidays at this grade include only limited amounts of activity.

View leisurely holidays
4 - 6 MODERATE
4 - 6 MODERATE

Suitable for reasonably fit individuals, such as weekend walkers and cyclists. There can be the occasional more difficult day.

View moderate holidays
7 - 9 CHALLENGING
7 - 9 CHALLENGING

Physically challenging holidays, where you need to be prepared before you go.

View challenging holidays
10 - 12 TOUGH
10 - 12 TOUGH

Our toughest holidays, involving many long days, often in isolated areas. A high level of fitness and previous wilderness and mountain experience is essential.

View Tough holidays

Scotland Road Cycling Coast to Coast

Highlights
  • A spectacular ride across Highland Scotland from the east coast to the west coast.
  • Quiet roads, challenging climbs and brilliant descents through the UK's finest landscapes.
  • Visit the beautiful Cairngorms National Park, mysterious Loch Ness and the majestic mountains of Torridon.
  • Full support throughout the day plus luggage transfers for a gear-free lightweight ride every day
  • Includes all meals, support vehicle, luggage transfers, guesthouse accommodation and expert guide

At a Glance
  • Group Size 2 to 8
  • 6 days cycling
  • 419 kilometres
  • 100% road
  • 100% vehicle supported
  • Join In Aberdeen

Accommodation & Meals
  • All meals included
  • 6 nights Guesthouse
Overview

Cycling across the one of the most beautiful swathes of Scotland, right across the Highlands, through the Cairngorms National Park, along atmospheric Loch Ness and through the majestic mountains of Torridon, this route covers 262 miles (419km) from East to West. It also includes, arguably, one of the UK’s highest and most challenging road climb. On the way you’ll enjoy top-notch local cuisine dining in great local inns, finishing in Scotland’s pub of the year in Applecross.

Throughout the day, our support vehicle will on hand to hand out drinks, snacks and provide a friendly ride should you need it. It also transfers your luggage every day so you can have a lightweight and care-free ride.

Is this holiday for you?

This holiday is suitable only for fit and experienced riders who love cycling and enjoy the challenge of longer days in the saddle, riding for consecutive days. Distances range from 40 - 70 miles each day, cycling at roughly 12ph. There will be a variety of terrain from rolling countryside to hilly and mountainous areas. Most days will be challenging and the trip will include some of the more test …

This holiday is suitable only for fit and experienced riders who love cycling and enjoy the challenge of longer days in the saddle, riding for consecutive days. Distances range from 40 - 70 miles each day, cycling at roughly 12ph. There will be a variety of terrain from rolling countryside to hilly and mountainous areas. Most days will be challenging and the trip will include some of the more testing climbs in Scotland including high mountain passes. These harder climbs are rewarded with fast and exciting descents. We will often be in the saddle for 7 hours each day plus the odd longer day. There is also time each day for breaks and lunches plus visits to some sites of interest. The weather in Scotland can be unpredictable and at times can make activities more challenging. Please do bear this in mind when thinking about what trip to join. If our guides feel that you are not able to complete a scheduled ride they may ask you not to join in that day.

Why KE?

On our Scottish holidays we pride ourselves on the quality of our meals, the excellence of our local expert guides, and our attention to organisational detail, meaning that you can have a world-class experience in some of the world’s most majestic scenery. This holiday is also 100% vehicle supported.

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Itinerary

We meet at Aberdeen Train Station this morning and begin our journey across Scotland. A short van transfer takes us to our start point, on the shores of the North Sea. After a group welcome, bike fitting session and a briefing for the day, we set off - leaving the city of Aberdeen behind us as we roll along the quiet South Deeside roads. A riverside lunch awaits us in the picturesque village of Banchory. After refuelling, we continue along the River Dee, leading us to the village of Ballater and the end of our first day’s ride.

Accommodation

Guesthouse

Meals

L D

Ascent

720 M

Distance

72 KM

Today we ride through the UK’s largest and highest National Park. There are a few hills to contend with today with challenging ascents but the exciting descents and superb views more than reward the effort required on the climbs. After a stiff climb over the Lecht pass we’ll stop in the village of Tomintoul - the highest in the Highlands. It’s also home to one of Scotland’s best whisky shops which is well worth a visit. Most of the hard work is done for the day as we make our way to the village of Grantown on Spey, where we will stay tonight.

Accommodation

Guesthouse

Meals

B L D

Ascent

1130 M

Distance

72 KM

Today’s ride takes us right off the beaten track. The day starts easily with a pleasant ride through the villages of Dulnain Bridge and Carrbridge before we strike west up the Findhorn Valley. Following a fantastic country road, we climb over the challenging Garbole where the views of the Highlands open up. The route then descends to the village of Farr and then follows quiet backroads alongside the shores of Loch Ness. A fantastic 5 mile descent awaits as the finish to the day, dropping us down to the shores of Loch Ness Followed by a short transfer to our accommodation in the village of Drumnadrochit.

Accommodation

Guesthouse

Meals

B L D

Ascent

1430 M

Distance

106 KM

We enjoy a relaxed morning in the village of Drumnadrochit. Mid-morning, we enjoy a treat as we board a zodiac for a high speed trip on Loch Ness, passing beautiful Urquhart Castle, its ruins perched right on the edge of the loch. Back on land, we bypass a short but busy section of road and start riding again from near the castle - we’re now back on two wheels for the remainder of the day. Our route from Drumnadrochit heads west, passing the Balmacaan Forest, and follows a lovely road alongside the River Glass towards the village of Beauly. The last few miles wind through the attractive countryside to our accommodation secluded in the hills above Contin.

Accommodation

Guesthouse

Meals

B L D

Ascent

760 M

Distance

66 KM

After setting out this morning we pass through Garve and then on to Achnasheen, with the landscape becomes more mountainous around us. After some wild miles, we climb away from the shores of Loch a’Chroisg, rewarded with one of the finest views you will find anywhere - right down the length of the spectacular Loch Maree. The descent is an absolute blast on a perfect road surface and before long we will find ourselves at Kinlochewe. The final section of the day passes through the dramatic Glen Torridon. The scenery here is hard to beat with the majestic mountains of Liathach and Beinn Eighe thrusting skywards. As we gently climb across the watershed, we get our first glimpse of the west coast. We end the day with an overnight stay in the village of Shieldaig.

Accommodation

Guesthouse

Meals

B L D

Ascent

596 M

Distance

69 KM

Today we will start with a warm up on the fantastic coastal road from Torridon to Shieldaig. We then ride south through the hills on a winding single track road before reaching the start of our final, challenging climb - The Bealach na Ba. Famous and spectacular, the road is alpine in nature, crossing the rugged peak of Beinn Bhàn. Starting from sea level and rising through a series of ramps, hairpins and switchbacks to the summit at 626m (2,054ft) over a 6 mile climb, the road reaches gradients of up to 20% in places! Once at the top though, it’s an incredible view of the sea ahead of us and downhill all the way to the coast and journey’s end. Having cycled from Coast to Coast, a celebratory lunch awaits us at the fantastic Applecross Inn. Looking across the sea to the Isle of Skye, it’s the perfect place to take a moment to appreciate a fantastic trip. You shouldn’t be ready for it to end just yet though we still have the lumpy ride around the peninsula back to Sheildaig to enjoy.

Accommodation

Guesthouse

Meals

B L D

Ascent

1430 M

Distance

72 KM

This morning we will have a leisurely breakfast before transferring back to Inverness. The journey takes us around 1.5 hours, arriving into the city around 12 noon, allowing you plenty of time to connect with onward transport. On the way home you’ll have a chance to reflect on what will surely be a most memorable adventure.

Meals

B
Download Trip Notes
The Route
Point Point

Essential Information

We've compiled some of our Frequently Asked Questions to help you learn more about this amazing trip.

  • A professional English-speaking guide plus assistant guide/support driver
  • All transfers involved in the itinerary
  • All accommodation as described
  • All meals

  • Travel Insurance
  • Visa fees (if applicable)
  • Airport transfers
  • Drinks
  • Miscellaneous personal expenses

This holiday is operated in association with Wilderness Scotland, and they sell their own customers directly on to this trip also. KE acts as an agent for Wilderness Scotland and by booking this holiday you are entering into an agreement directly with Wilderness Scotland under the terms of their booking conditions.

On Day 1 of the itinerary your guide will meet you at the centre of Aberdeen Railway Station at 11.00am.

On Day 7 of the itinerary you will be transferred to Inverness Railway Station for 12:00pm.

All meals from Lunch on Day 1 to Breakfast on Day 7 are included.

Water is drinkable from the taps on this holiday. Please fill your personal bottles for your day in the morning. We do not encourage the purchasing of single use plastic bottles.

Lunch each day will be either a wilderness picnic or taken at a local cafe/ restaurant. Drinks and snacks are provided throughout the day as you require. Evening meals are included on the first and final evenings, and on this itinerary and we have the flexibility to take evening meals in local restaurants or pubs. Based upon our knowledge and experience, we will visit the best places to eat along the route.

On this trip we generally eat dinner as a group however if you would like to make alternative arrangements you are free to do so. Your guide will have an evening off during this trip where they do not eat with the group. They will recommend options for dinner that evening and will help you make any necessary reservations.

Whilst we can cater for vegetarians, albeit sometimes with a more limited choice, we cannot always provide special diets.  Due to the nature of some of the trips that we operate and the countries in which we operate them, it can be very hard (and sometimes impossible) to cater for a wide range of dietary choices and you may have to supplement your diet with food/snacks from home.  If you have specific dietary requirements please do speak to our sales team and they will be able to advise you whether or not we will be able to offer your specific choice.  Please note that we are unable to provide separate menus and cannot accept liability for any problems arising from special dietary requirements or intolerances.

This trip features some of the best hotel and guest house accommodation and food along the route we travel. We use a variety of accommodations such as country inns, guesthouses and small hotels, all hand-picked by us. Accommodation is in a choice of double or twin rooms with ensuite facilities.

The group will be led by an experienced and qualified leader.

A road bike or standard cycle-touring bike is recommended for this trip, fitted with a triple or compact chainset and 23/25mm touring tyres. Please call us if you are unsure about the suitability of your bike. We cannot stress enough the importance of ensuring that your bike is in perfect working condition before you start this trip. You are depending on your bike to transport you throughout your holiday. It is VITAL to ensure it is THOROUGHLY SERVICED to guarantee it is in good mechanical order before departure. If you are not mechanically minded, get your local bicycle dealer to service it for you. For home mechanics, points to note particularly are: 

a) Check rims and if they are worn, cracked or dented replace with a new rim or wheel to avoid wheel failure. It is especially important to check that your bike’s rims are not worn concave by the brake blocks - replace them if they are! b) Check wheels are true and spoke tension is correct. 

c) Check and, if required, adjust, grease or replace ALL bearings and quick release skewers. 

d) Check and, if required, replace brake and gear cables. 

e) Check and tighten, if required, all bolts (esp. crank, bottom brackets, aheadset, stem/handlebars). 

f) Check chain, cassette and chain rings for wear - replace as necessary. 

g) Take the right tyres, inner tubes and BIKE SPECIFIC SPARES. 

Whilst not essential, it is a good idea that you familiarise yourself with how to carry out at least some basic repairs to your bike e.g. changing an inner tube and fixing a puncture. Naturally, the bike guide will always be happy to assist with any repairs, however, due to the often remote nature of our trips being able to carry out a simple repair can save time and inconvenience waiting for assistance.

You can either take your own bike or hire one locally.

Bike hire costs:

Road Bike – £175

Hybrid Bike – £175

E-Bike – £300*

*There are a maximum of 2 e-bikes available per trip and these are strictly on a first come, first served basis.

 

Details of hire bikes:

Road Bike – Checkpoint ALR 5

Hybrid Bike – FX Sport 4

Ebike – Verve+

 

Required information for bike hire:

  • Height
  • Inseam measurement
  • Type of peddle required (flat, SPD, own)

There is no weight limit for your luggage on this holiday, however you will need to be able to lift and move your own luggage easily.  There is also limited room in the transfer vehicles, and so apart from your bike, one bag to be transferred and one small day pack per person is ideal.

For each holiday there is a minimum number of participants required to enable it to go ahead. Once the minimum number is reached, the trip status will change from 'Available' to 'Guaranteed to run'. You can check the trip status for each departure in ‘Dates and Prices’ table. Other than in exceptional circumstances, we will not cancel a trip once it has achieved this guaranteed to run status and so you are free to proceed with your international flight booking and other travel arrangements.

The information that we provide is for UK passport holders. A passport with 6 months remaining validity at the end of your stay is generally required, and you should have at least 2 blank pages for each country that you visit.

It is your responsibility to ensure that you have the correct travel documents and visas for your holiday. Please ensure that you check for the latest advice before travel. For the most up to date information on entry requirements, please visit the UK Government website.

If you have a severe allergy please inform the KE office before you travel. We will do all we can to help, but we cannot guarantee an allergy free environment on KE trips. You will need to carry your own treatment for the allergy with you, as 'adrenaline auto-injectors' are not carried as standard by KE leaders and staff. You should inform your leader on arrival of your allergy, and let them know where you keep your adrenaline pen.

The unit of currency in the UK is Sterling.

As a reputable tour operator, KE supports the British Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office's ‘Travel Aware campaign to enable British citizens to prepare for their journeys overseas. The 'Travel Aware' website provides a single, authoritative source of advice for all kinds of travellers and we recommend that prior to travel, all KE clients visit the official UK Government website at travelaware.campaign.gov.uk and read the FCDO Travel Advice for their chosen destination. North Americans can also check out the U.S. Department of State website: www.travel.state.gov for essential travel advice and tips.

KE treat the safety and security of all clients as the most important aspect of any trip we organise. We would not run any trip that we did not consider reasonably safe.  Should the FCDO advise against travel for any reason, we will contact everyone booked to travel to discuss the situation.  We receive regular updates direct from the FCDO and are in constant touch with our contacts on the ground.  If you have any questions about government travel advice, please call our office.

KE do not encourage the use of single use plastic items. We are ensuring that our agents all over the world are working together to reduce the problem and educate those around them. We are leading by example in our KE office by reducing our plastic use.

It is an essential condition of joining a holiday with KE Adventure Travel that you have a valid travel insurance policy to cover the cost of medical treatment and to protect the value of your holiday in the event of cancellation.  When taking out insurance please ensure the policy you choose covers you for the activities and altitude included in your itinerary.

For appropriate insurance cover we recommend Campbell Irvine Direct.  Please go to our Travel Insurance page for further information and to get a quote.

For this holiday you will need your usual cycling clothing, including shoes, cycling gloves and helmet (which must be worn at all times when cycling).

Whether you are hiring a bike or taking your own, we recommend that you take the usual day-ride essentials of: mobile phone, multi-tool, mini-pump, tyre levers, spare tubes and puncture repair kit.

Bike Wear

  • Cycling helmet
  • Cycling shoes
  • Daypack or mountain bike-specific hydration pack (e.g. Camelbak)
  • Water bladder - min. 2 litres water capacity (we encourage re-filling water bottles rather than single use plastic)
  • Water purification tablets
  • Padded (baggy) cycling shorts
  • Long leg cycling trousers or leg warmers
  • Base-layer – short sleeve cycling tops
  • Mid-layer - long sleeved cycling tops
  • Fleece jacket or jumper
  • Lightweight windproof top
  • Lightweight waterproof jacket
  • Regular biking gloves
  • Long-fingered biking gloved
  • Warm hat that fits under your helmet
  • Buff
  • Sunglasses
  • Sun cream (inc. total bloc for lips/nose)
  • Camera

Other Stuff

  • Travel and off-the-bike clothing
  • Approach shoes or lightweight boots for the several days of walking
  • Wash bag, towel, toiletries, including anti-bacterial handwash
  • Headtorch and spare batteries
  • Swimwear
  • Basic First Aid kit and personal medication
  • Chamois cream (e.g. Assos/Ozone)
  • Insect repellant
  • Reusable cloth bag for shopping (to avoid plastic bags)

Spares

If you are hiring a bike you do not need to bring any spares. The hire bikes are provided in good condition and a supply of spares is carried. You may be asked to pay directly for any spares used, especially in the case of crash damage or damage by mis-use. If you are taking your own bike, you should consider taking a minimum of spares, including a couple of spare spokes (for each wheel if they are different), spare brake blocks (or brake disc pads), chain links/chain connector, rear derailleur hanger and any non-standard parts specific to your bike.

Repairs

Whilst not essential, it is a good idea that you familiarise yourself with how to carry out at least some basic repairs to your bike e.g. changing an inner tube and fixing a puncture. Your bike guide will be happy to help with repairs and general maintenance, but being able to carry out a simple repair yourself could save the inconvenience of having to wait for assistance.

Hydration and Energy Snacks

You should take suitable water bottle(s) or a hydration pack and you should also consider taking a small supply of the gels, power bars or sports drink mix that you would normally use on a ride at home.

Please contact us if you have any questions about your equipment.

Cotswold Outdoor Red PantonMany of the Equipment items listed above are available from Cotswold Outdoor - our 'Official Recommended Outdoor Retailer'. When you book a holiday with KE you will receive 12.5% discount voucher from Cotswold Outdoor and other retailers.
>> Find out more

DATES & PRICES

Private Departure?

Gather a few friends, family or club and take over your own departure.

2024

Dates

Adults from

Deposit

Status

More Information

  • Scotland Road Cycling Coast to Coast
    Without Flights
  • Departure Reference: WCMB/01/24/
  • This trip begins on Sat 8 Jun and ends on Fri 14 Jun
  • This departure is available and departs within 49 days. Secure your place today with full payment
  • Single Supplement Price: US$840 - Includes all 6 nights. Book early as very limited.
  • Download Trip Notes

More Information

  • Scotland Road Cycling Coast to Coast
    Without Flights
  • Departure Reference: WCMB/02/24/
  • This trip begins on Sat 17 Aug and ends on Fri 23 Aug
  • This departure is guaranteed. Secure your place today with a deposit of US$625
  • Single Supplement Price: US$840 - Includes all 6 nights. Book early as very limited.
  • Download Trip Notes

Land Only Information

We sell this holiday on a Land Only basis, joining with the group at Aberdeen train station at 11:00am on day 1 of the itinerary.

Travel arrangements should not be booked until you have recieved your booking confirmation and the departure is showing 'Guaranteed to Run'.

ZEN_HOLIDAY_DATES_PRICES_LAND_ONLY_USD_NOTICE


Changes to flights

Please be aware that the flight industry is experiencing a high level of service fluctuation and changes to your flights may occur. This may also require amends to the transfers and joining arrangements. Thank you all for continuing your patience and understanding.

 


This holiday is operated in association with Wilderness Scotland. KE acts as an agent for Wilderness Scotland and by booking this holiday you are entering into an agreement directly with Wilderness Scotland under the terms of their booking conditions.

BOOK WITH KE CONFIDENCE - No surcharge guarantee

The price of our holidays can change depending on a variety of factors but unlike some other tour operators, KE have undertaken to guarantee the Land Only price of your holiday will not change after you have booked. The price when you book is the price you will pay, whether you are booking for this year or the next. Book early to avoid any tour price increases, get the best flight prices and take advantage of our 'No Surcharge Guarantee'.

KE Adventure is a fully bonded tour operator. We hold an ATOL license (No: 2808) and are bonded with ABTA (Membership No: W4341)


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