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Known as The Garden of England, this corner of Kent is a pretty and rural area dotted with orchards and small farms. But on this tour you will discover it offers so much more. From the chalk downs to the coast, medieval towns to trendy seaside spots, vineyards to art galleries and castles to gardens your route leads you through all the wonderful variety of this unhurried region and includes a stay in stunning Leeds Castle.

Cycling along valleys, beside the sea, atop the downs and across ancient marshland, there's bundles to explore with characterful overnight stops brimming with local colour. We are great fans of this locale and so we can't recommend it enough!



Holiday details

Price

Classic

from £1,360 per person
Monday start

Luxury

from £2,450 per person
Thursday start

Based on two people sharing a room

What’s included?

Entrance to Leeds Castle and grounds on days 7 and 8. Luxury tour includes 1 dinner.   See what’s included as standard

Duration

8 nights

Start & Finish

Classic starts Monday, luxury starts Thursdays and is circular from Canterbury. Other start days maybe available.

Hotels

Classic

Three small hotels, an inn and a stay within Leeds Castle grounds

Luxury

Two 4 star hotels, a very special boutique hotel, a restaurant with rooms and a stay within Leeds Castle grounds

Holiday type

Self-guided

This tour is priced without a guide and you are free to explore on your own.  If you would like a guide for part or all of your trip, we are happy to provide a knowledgeable, local guide

Activity level

Not so gentle cycling. More info...

Electric bikes

Available

Mileage

7 days of cycling 20 - 42 miles (32 - 67 km) per day

Terrain

A few hills on most days

Traffic-free

Very little traffic

Options

  • Additional nights enroute
  • Cycle on to London




Itinerary day-by-day


Classic

  1. 1. Day one

    Canterbury

    Arrive in Canterbury and check into your hotel in the heart of the city. There's so much to explore in this astounding heritage city with its magnificent cathedral, and many museums. Your bicycles will be waiting for you at the hotel so if you wish, you can enjoy the main sights by taking our city centre bike tour.

  2. 2. Day two

    Canterbury to Sandwich

    Your host will meet you after breakfast and run through your tour itinerary. Then you are off to cycle east to the coast. Ride through orchards and a rolling landscape of villages to reach the characterful old ports of Deal and Sandwich. Cycle adjacent to the shore, take in the castles, and explore the fascinating history of these Cinque port towns. Your stay for the next two nights is in a riverside hotel in the heart of medieval Sandwich.

    32 miles (51 km)

  3. 3. Day three

    Circular Ride from Sandwich Around the Coast

    Today's ride is a fantastic breeze around the coast cycling adjacent to the sea for most of the day. Although you pedal inland to begin with, breakwaters, beaches, cliffs and stunning views are the order of the day. Take in the new Turner gallery at Margate, delightful Broadstairs and the regency charm of Ramsgate before returning to Sandwich.

    Optional 32 miles (52 km)

  4. 4. Day four

    Sandwich to Chartham Hatch

    Heading towards Canterbury, there's flat riding above the Stour marshes and dotted villages to enjoy. Visit a vineyard to taste the local product and swan around the gardens of Goodestone Park. As you approach the Kent Downs and some hills, the scene changes, ever rural and charming. Then cross the River Stour and reach your hotel where you will stay for the next two nights.

    34 miles (54 km)

  5. 5. Day five

    Circular Ride from Chartham Hatch

    Riding through woodland bridleways and valleys within the South Downs you will experience another unique landscape. The rolling and often steep chalk downs house pretty villages and hamlets in their cosy valleys with Wye a lovely destination. Turn around here if you are not a serious cyclist who loves steep hills or do not have an E bike! Beyond Wye there's a long and steep climb, glorious hidden valleys dotted with hamlets and a remote church, sheltered by woods. Enjoy great views too and stop in attractive Elham for a well earned refreshment before climbing up the Minnis and heading home through woodland downs.

    Optional 18 or 31 miles (29 or 49 km)

  6. 6. Day six

    Chartham Hatch to Faversham

    Today is full of variety as you cycle along the willow filled meadows of the River Stour and skirt Canterbury. Then pedal along the old Crab and Winkle railway line which leads you to Whitstable where you can savour their catch of oysters and enjoy a craft shop or two. There's wonderful seaside cycling from there for a while before you pick up the old Saxon Shoreline to arrive in Faversham. With 500 listed buildings, a brewery and a fascinating creek at its heart, this is a historic town with much to explore.

    20 or 36 miles (32 or 57 km)

  7. 7. Day seven

    Faversham to Leeds Castle

    This day is another different scene with a very gradual and beautiful ride into the Downs along forgotten back lanes. Villages are well spaced amongst the orchards but there are some cracking pubs with The Ringlestone Inn a triumph. Tear yourself from lunch for a refreshing freewheel down to Leeds Castle where you spend a magnificent night in the stable courtyard. Today's shorter distance gives you time to explore the castle and after the crowds have left, enjoy the grounds and a knight's dinner.

    18 miles (28 km)

  8. 8. Day eight

    Leeds Castle to Canterbury

    Pedalling back to Canterbury takes you cross country through the downs and their leafy lanes and tiny villages to the stunning and historic village of Chilham, a good place to pause for lunch. The rolling landscape is often wooded and always beautiful with the final few miles along the Stour valley being flat and traffic free. You will return to the heart of Canterbury having experienced all the wonderful variety that Kent and its 'garden' have to offer.

    27 miles (43 km)

  9. 9. Day nine

    Depart Canterbury

    Depart at your leisure.

Luxury

  1. 1. Day one

    Canterbury

    Arrive in Canterbury and check into your hotel in the heart of the city. There's so much to explore in this astounding heritage city with its magnificent cathedral, and many museums. Your bicycles will be waiting for you at the hotel so if you wish, you can enjoy the main sights by taking our city centre bike tour.

  2. 2. Day two

    Canterbury to Sandwich

    Your host will meet you after breakfast and run through your tour itinerary. Then you are off to cycle east to the coast. Ride through orchards and a rolling landscape of villages to reach the characterful old ports of Deal and Sandwich. Cycle adjacent to the shore, take in the castles, and explore the fascinating history of these Cinque port towns. Your stay for the next two nights is at Lutyen's The Salutation set amidst its historic garden in the heart of medieval Sandwich.

    32 miles (51 km)

  3. 3. Day three

    Circular Ride from Sandwich Around the Coast

    Today's ride is a fantastic breeze around the coast cycling adjacent to the sea for most of the day. Although you pedal inland to begin with, breakwaters, beaches, cliffs and stunning views are the order of the day. Take in the new Turner gallery at Margate, delightful Broadstairs and the regency charm of Ramsgate before returning to Sandwich.

    Optional 32 miles (52 km)

  4. 4. Day four

    Sandwich to Bridge

    Heading towards Canterbury, there's flat riding above the Stour marshes and dotted villages to enjoy. Visit a vineyard to taste the local product and swan around the gardens of Goodestone Park. As you approach the Kent Downs and some hills, the scene changes, ever rural and charming until you arrive at your characterful manor house hotel where you will stay for the next two nights.

    26 miles (42 km)

  5. 5. Day five

    Circular ride from Bridge

    Riding along two valleys within the South Downs you will experience another unique landscape. The rolling and sometimes steep chalk downs house pretty villages and hamlets in their cosy valleys with Elham a lovely destination. Climb up the Minnis beyond and enjoy views from the top of the downs. Those who are not serious cyclists, enjoying steep hills or an E bike should pass on the detour to Wye and head home along peaceful country lanes and idyllic dry valleys. Those speeding down into Wye will enjoy this lovely destination before a long and steep climb back up the downs through woodlands and hamlets to rejoin the route home in Petham.

    Optional 22 or 32 miles (35 or 51 km)

  6. 6. Day six

    Bridge to Faversham

    Today is full of variety as you cycle along the willow filled meadows of the River Stour and skirt Canterbury. Then pedal along the old Crab and Winkle railway line which leads you to Whitstable where you can savour their catch of oysters and enjoy a craft shop or two. There's wonderful seaside cycling from there for a while before you pick up the old Saxon Shoreline to arrive in Faversham. With 500 listed buildings, a brewery and a fascinating creek at its heart, this is a historic town with much to explore.

    24 or 40 miles (38 or 64 km)

  7. 7. Day seven

    Faversham to Leeds Castle

    This day is another different scene with a very gradual and beautiful ride into the Downs along forgotten back lanes. Villages are well spaced amongst the orchards but there are some cracking pubs with The Ringlestone Inn a triumph. Tear yourself from lunch for a refreshing freewheel down to Leeds Castle where you spend a magnificent night in the stable courtyard. Today's shorter distance gives you time to explore the castle and after the crowds have left, enjoy the grounds and a knight's dinner.

    18 miles (28 km)

  8. 8. Day eight

    Leeds Castle to Canterbury

    Pedalling back to Canterbury takes you cross country through the downs and their leafy lanes and tiny villages to the stunning and historic village of Chilham, a good place to pause for lunch. The rolling landscape is often wooded and always beautiful with the final few miles along the Stour valley being flat and traffic free. You will return to the heart of Canterbury having experienced all the wonderful variety that Kent and its 'garden' have to offer.

    27 miles (43 km)

  9. 9. Day nine

    Depart Canterbury

    Depart at your leisure, your cycling equipment will be collected from your hotel.