Quick enough to see the sights, and leisurely enough to not miss anything, there’s nothing quite like exploring a new place on two wheels. Whatever your cycling ability, there’s a fantastic destination just waiting to welcome you. Try casually coasting down city streets, getting your heart thumping on off-road routes or even packing up and taking a long tour right across the continent. So grab your bicycle and get ready for an adventure you won’t forget – here are some top cycling destinations in Europe.
What springs to mind when you think of a German getaway? Pulsating youth culture in Berlin? Steins of perfectly-frothed beer in Munich? Or maybe the fairytale backdrop of Bavaria? All these German jewels deserve the hype they’ve earned amongst wanderlusters, but if you’re a regular reader you’ll know that here at P&O, we’re on a mission to #rediscovertravel. Today we’ll be exploring the allures of Dusseldorf, a true hidden gem that has more than enough charm to rival the more famous German cities.
When it comes to romance, it’s hard to beat a quick European getaway. Throughout the continent, candlelit cuisine and bewitching scenery await any couple seeking an enchanting break for two. The twinkling lights of Paris or wistful waterways of Venice are standard settings for a starry-eyed rendezvous, but they aren’t the only locations for lovers. There are scores of secret spots across Europe for an unforgettable romantic escape.
You may think of Bruges as your second home, walk like a local down Amsterdam’s winding back streets and have a cafe in Paris where the baristas know you by name. But have you ever felt your travels were starting to lack a little… je ne sais quoi? If you’re starting to find your favourite destination a little too familiar, maybe it’s time to shake up your holiday ritual. These fairytale European cities are sure to steal your heart – and don’t worry, we won’t tell.
While the Tour de France may be the household name, many of cycling’s true greats are made on the stony streets of northern Europe. Belgium and France’s cobbled classics are some of the oldest events in professional road cycling, and among the most revered races of the season. The arduous routes see the world’s finest athletes on two wheels straining to break away from the pack in a breathless, thigh-burning struggle to glorious victory.
Starting with the Omloop, the series of one-day events progresses into two of the most highly-regarded events in cycling – the Tour of Flanders (or De Ronde) and the iconic Paris-Roubaix. Here’s how to catch the best of the classics in person this year.
The city of love, art and long lunches, Paris has captured the hearts of cinephiles, foodies and ardent fans of architecture alike, so a visit to the French capital is always a good idea.
Indeed, in a place where a million surprises are just waiting to be unearthed, half the fun of touring this great city is stumbling across something totally new, which can often be achieved just by venturing a stone’s throw from the typical tourism draws. As part of our #rediscovertravel campaign, we’re encouraging visitors to France to try the road less-travelled. So be adventurous, and tour through secret passageways, underground routes and un-tread trails with our guide to the hidden gems of Paris.
Anyone who’s lucky enough to have visited Dublin will tell you its distinct character is what brings them back time and time again. While Paris is remarkably romantic, Bruges is chocolate-box charming and Berlin enviably cool, Ireland’s beloved capital is something else entirely.
However, it’s difficult to distill Dublin’s atmosphere down to a single word. What makes this city so addictive is the unique charisma of the people. You’ll never be short of interesting conversation surrounded by Dubliners. They are famously frank, witty, lively and expressive, with many stories to tell.
To experience this fine city in its truest form, it’s worth exploring the corners that natives take for granted.