1. Fruitful seasons for riding the Algarve
The summer heat would make southern Portugal particularly challenging for cycling, but spring and autumn – with cooler temperatures and coastal breezes – are perfect for it. This new cycle holiday from Chapters Holidays is a week-long trip around the lesser-known eastern Algarve based in Monte Gordo and starting this autumn.
Cyclists will ride around 25km a day on coastal paths, finding secret beaches and small islands, while also snaking inland to cobbled hill towns. There’s also a day-long jaunt across the Guadiana river into Spain. Each day will end with a spread of local food and wine; expect fresh seafood and red wine from the vineyards of Tavira.
2. Balkan beauty: Dubrovnik circular
3. Andalucían meander: Granada to Seville
New for 2017 from cycle-travel specialist Skedaddle is this guided tour taking in three of Andalucía’s most exciting cities. The nine-day trip ties together Córdoba, the birthplace of flamenco; Granada, a city known for its fine architecture; and Seville, a buzzing destination with a rich culture and great tapas bars.
The tour is at a “leisurely” pace – expect to travel between 21km and 59km each day – on a route that “meanders through craggy sierras, passing castle-topped villages”. Departs 9 October, avoiding the intense summer heat.
4. Dally by the Danube: Passau to Belgrade
5. Breeze through Bavaria: Regensburg circular trip
This eight-night self guided trip in south-east Germany, against the backdrop of the Jura mountains, rivers and pine forests and hilltop castles, covering around 45km each day. The tour starts and finishes in Regensburg, a medieval town on the banks of the Danube.
Three other rivers will feature during the trip, the Altmuhl, the Sulz and the Schwarze Laber; there will also be the opportunity to cool off at a popular wild swimming spot. Accommodation will be a mix of three and four star hotels, as well as a converted brewery. Expect plenty of bratwurst, lederhosen and beer.