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Coast and Castles – cycle in the footsteps of legends and kings

neilalderney123 (CC BY-NC 2.0)

Coast and Castles – cycle in the footsteps of legends and kings

Bike Touring Collection by Amy

4-7

days

3-5 h

/ day

223 mi

7,875 ft

7,625 ft

Stunning coastal landscapes, castles towering on the horizon, parklands brimming with diverse wildlife and highland cows, pristine stretches of creamy sandy beaches and layers upon layers of emerald hills – cycling the Coast and Castles route, you quickly understand why it has become one of the most popular cycle routes in the UK.

Starting in Newcastle-upon-Tyne in the North of England, this Collection leads 223 miles (359 km) to Scotland’s capital, Edinburgh, over seven varied stages. As the name of the cycle route suggests, you visit many incredible castles dotted along the coast which tell many tales of the fates of former kings, kingdoms, and legends.

This Collection is suitable for all cyclists as there are no big climbs and most of the route follows quiet lanes, tracks, and cycleways. As most of the section along the coast follows grassy tracks, we recommend riding a mountain or hybrid bike. You can easily rent a suitable bike in Newcastle and leave your city bike at home.

Each stage ends in a town or village with various accommodation options to make your ride even more comfortable. You also find plenty of pub and ice cream stops as well as local delicacies such as smoked kippers.

The start of the route Newcastle is easy to reach by train from across the UK. However, as most of the trains are run by East Coast and CrossCountry, you should definitely make sure you reserve a space for your bike well in advance. Although the journey can take quite some time from London and the South of England, the train journey passes through quaint countryside along the way.

The Coast and Castles cycle ride offers something for everyone – culture, history, local delicacies, hills, rivers, the sea, and beaches. And, what better way to explore one of the UK’s most beautiful corners than by bike?

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Coast and Castles

202 mi

7,300 ft

7,025 ft

Last updated: December 20, 2021

Plan your own version of this adventure in the multi-day planner based on the stages suggested in this Collection.

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Tours & Highlights

  • Map data © OpenStreetMap contributors

    Stage 1: Newcastle upon Tyne to Newbiggen by the Sea – Coast and Castles

    Intermediate
    03:04
    31.7 mi
    10.4 mph
    825 ft
    800 ft
    Intermediate bike ride. Good fitness required. Mostly paved surfaces. Suitable for all skill levels.

    Your first day cycling the Coast and Castles route impresses with the incredible history and nature along Northern England’s coastline.

    

    Starting from the bustling metropolis Newcastle-upon-Tyne, you pass by golden sandy beaches, the crumbling ruins of ancient castles and picturesque coastal towns. Today

    by Amy

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  • Intermediate
    03:07
    29.3 mi
    9.4 mph
    750 ft
    725 ft
    Intermediate bike ride. Good fitness required. Mostly paved surfaces. Suitable for all skill levels.

    Highland cows graze in wild nature reserves, sandy beaches stretch into the sea, and castles, that were once home to Shakespeare’s characters, tower over crashing waves – your second day cycling from Newcastle to Edinburgh is full of surprises.

    

    Setting off from Newbiggin by the Sea, you can enjoy the

    by Amy

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  • Intermediate
    04:05
    39.4 mi
    9.6 mph
    1,200 ft
    1,200 ft
    Intermediate bike ride. Good fitness required. Mostly paved surfaces. Suitable for all skill levels.

    Castles, castles and more castles! Stage 3 of the Coast and Castles route takes you to the UK’s oldest, largest, and best-preserved castles that tell the tales of centuries of fascinating history.

    

    From Craster, continue along the coastline cycling parallel to the beach. After just over 1.5 (2.7 km) the

    by Amy

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  • Intermediate
    02:55
    29.0 mi
    10.0 mph
    750 ft
    700 ft
    Intermediate bike ride. Good fitness required. Mostly paved surfaces. Suitable for all skill levels.

    Today, you bid farewell to the English coast as you cycle into Scotland’s stunning landscapes. Quiet country lanes and bike paths lead you past crashing waves and along gushing rivers as you enter one of the most beautiful areas of the UK.

    

    This stage is mostly flat with just a few small hills, such as

    by Amy

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  • Intermediate
    03:06
    31.3 mi
    10.1 mph
    1,225 ft
    925 ft
    Intermediate bike ride. Good fitness required. Mostly paved surfaces. Suitable for all skill levels.

    Scotland – the land of historic castles, friendly people, kilts and awe-dropping landscapes. It is no secret that Scotland has some of the UK's most spectacular scenery and what better way to explore it than by bike?

    

    Stage 5 of the Coast and Castles route leads you along picturesque rivers, through rolling

    by Amy

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  • Difficult
    03:50
    37.2 mi
    9.7 mph
    2,275 ft
    2,000 ft
    Expert bike ride. Very good fitness required. Mostly paved surfaces. Suitable for all skill levels.

    Spectacular panoramas of green leafy hilltops, moody landscapes and mystical abbeys await you on stage 6 of Coast and Castles. With 2,296 feet (700 m) of climbing, this is the toughest day of your journey, but you are rewarded with inspiring views of Scottish scenery.

    

    Leaving Newton st Boswell behind

    by Amy

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  • Intermediate
    02:30
    25.4 mi
    10.2 mph
    875 ft
    1,250 ft
    Intermediate bike ride. Good fitness required. Mostly paved surfaces. Suitable for all skill levels.

    Your final day of cycling the Coast and Castles route takes you through beautiful Scottish landscapes before arriving in the country’s capital – Edinburgh. As the route is mostly downhill and the shortest route of your journey so far, your legs can easily recover from the previous day’s climb.

    

    After a

    by Amy

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Collection Stats

  • Tours
    7
  • Distance
    223 mi
  • Duration
    22:36 h
  • Elevation
    7,875 ft7,625 ft

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