Winter’s coming to an end, the frost is thawing around the UK’s countryside and many bikers are in the process of digging out their gear and uncovering their ride for another season.
As March quickens pace and the beginning of spring looks to be around the corner, now would be a good time to review the best tours to embark upon this year. From Scotland to Cornwall the UK’s roads are some of the best in Europe for variety and scenery, and these might be well worn routes but their popularity endures for a reason. Whether you are a new rider or an experienced veteran, check out these top 5 British motorcycling tours this spring.
The Antrim Coast Road – Northern Ireland
One of the joys of this road is that it isn’t really a major thoroughfare. On a small, lightly used and narrow road along the Antrim coast, the A2 provides some of the best looking 25 miles you’ll see in your lifetime. Highlights include the ‘Black Arch’ and the The Causeway Coast.
The A82 – Scotland
The ‘Great Western Road’ out of Glasgow, otherwise known as the A82, stretches through the Scottish Highlands, past Loch Lomond, Loch Linnhe and Fort William to Inverness. It covers some of the most stunning scenery the UK has to offer, and sweeps dramatically through mountainous terrain on smooth asphalt which is a dream to ride.
There are so many stunning routes around the Lake District it’s often hard to know which to take. Roads with elevation changes, lakeside views and classic pubs litter the landscape – and one of the most dramatic has to be the Hardknott Pass. Not for the faint-hearted, this is one of the steepest roads in Britain, and with a 1:3 gradient it’s a no go for beginner bikers.
One of the favourites, the B3306 connects St. Ives to St. Just along what is known as The West Cornwall Coast Road. With long sweeping bends interspersed with tight village roads and narrow hedge-lined tracks, the B3306 has some of the best views in the region as it hugs tightly to the sea. If touring this part of the South-West, a stop at the Tinners Arms in Zennor is a must.
Warminster to Poole
The A350 from Warminster to Poole cuts south on a primary route through some of the most interesting countryside in this part of the UK. Single-carriageway in its entirety, the route can often be busy but offers good overtaking opportunities through areas of outstanding natural beauty. Highlights include the Westbury White Horse and many small villages hosting rustic pubs, lovely walks and weekend retreats.
The 5 routes documented here offer a starting point for many amazing tours of the UK. On every stretch of road, any biker could easily find a number of welcoming B&B’s, pubs, country houses and hotels which offer a good night’s rest in preparation for more riding the next day. You’ll rarely get bored, and the element of diversity is consistently exciting and engaging.
In terms of motorcycle accessories, get a good map and some lightweight clothing for some of the warmer days spent riding. Infinity Motorcycles are a good bet for finding decent clothing at good rates, and they often have deals and packages available. Log on to www.infinitymotorcycles.com for more info.