I have a goal for the summer whilst we're at home to get at least one of the kids cycling without their stabilisers and also looking at getting myself a bicycle - why because in the future I would like some of our family time to be spent out exploring and exploring the countryside on the bike as I know from my own teens is by getting on your bike and heading off.
As family time is limited James Villas has put together some great blog posts this last month that I have been watching with eagle eyes on cycling whilst in their most popular destinations - I'm watching out for the Mallorca one most after our fabulous family holiday's there the last two summers and seeing the cyclist out every morning and evening exploring the countryside.
With 15 different routes to 5 of their most popular destinations in Europe even our little ones on their stabilisers can find a route that is good for them. The five destinations covered are Algarve, Cyprus, Mallorca, Menorca and Lanzarote and for each destination there are 3 different routes - a beginner, intermediate and advanced.
What James Villas has to say about the 3 different routes is
beginners, covering the more casual / less competent cyclist pursuing shorter more manageable routes. The intermediate routes are for the slightly more adventurous and confident cyclists, who are seeking a challenge. The advanced routes are for the keen / pro-cyclists aiming to take it to the max!
I'm all in favour of the beginners routes as even if as a family you only do a part of the route it's still a great excuse to see some of the country from a different perspective, spend time together and get active.
Algave Beginners Route
The beginners cycle route in the Algave is 23 km long however you don't have to go the whole distance, covering towns, beaches and by vineyards it covers some fabulous areas of the coastline as you see a different part of the country.
The Cyprus cycle route is 25 km long journeying through the beautiful countryside, seeing sites of historic significance as well as the local wine and ending up on the coast. 25 km may seem daunting for little legs to cope with but within the towns you can rent bicycles with tandem seats or with child seats on the back so you can cycle as a family.
The Mallorca cycle route of 24k from Porto Cristo to Cala Millor take a scenic path along the coastal roads, finishing or starting near some of the most famous caves on the island the Drach Caves. There are even ample opportunities to stop on the way for a lovely cooling swim.
One of the longer route Menorca's beginning cycle route is 30 km but takes you through some fantastic areas of the island from Es Mercadal to Mahon there are new food to try, rocks to climb or watch others climbing them as well as visiting the capital of the island.
The other long beginners cycle route is on Lanzarote and from experience it is a wonderful different world compared to the islands of Mallroca or Menorca, or Cyprus and the Algave. Going 30 km from Playa Blanca through to El Golfo you go through countryside that could very well have come straight out of a star wars movie as well as see some of the volcanic activity on the island.
Cycling on holiday
Nicole Cooke an Olympic Gold Medallist is sharing points about cycling on holiday and general advice for cycling together over on the James Villa's Blog.
Now all I've got to do is get the stabilisers and start planning our next holiday so that we can get out together as a family and get cycling.