The stunning scenery of Scotland, with its rolling hills, rugged mountains and miles upon miles of unspoilt countryside is the perfect place to enjoy a cycling holiday. This land of legends offers endless opportunities for families – there’s mediaeval castles to discover, glistening lakes to picnic by, blissful beaches and rock pools to explore, plus some of the best cycling routes in the UK.
When it comes to making the most of your family holiday in this awe-inspiring country, you’ll want to ensure you have everything prepped for a peaceful and relaxing time. That’s why we’ve curated our best top tips to help you enjoy a stress-free cycling holiday with the children.
Plan your routes
Scotland’s breathtaking landscapes have inspired songwriters, artists and even some of the world’s most famous writers – from J.K. Rowling to Bram Stoker. As such there are plenty of panoramic views to soak in here; but whilst a care-free couple may look to ride wherever the wind takes them, you’ll need to plan your routes ahead of time with children in tow.
Little legs get tired more quickly when cycling, and the undulating terrain of the Scottish Highlands can be testing even for experienced riders. Make a fun family activity out of spreading a map on a table and picking some cycling routes to try each day. Be sure that your chosen paths follow quiet roads, or stick to the 700+ miles of traffic-free cycle paths in Scotland which lead you past canals, through forests and down rural footpaths.
Schedule frequent breaks
Anyone with children knows that they need to stop for refreshments frequently, so it’s a good idea to plan a route that regularly passes through villages or towns where you can take a break. Not only will this save you from carrying large amounts of picnic supplies on your back, but you’ll also get the chance to sample some authentic and mouth-watering Scottish cuisine.
It’s important to always carry plenty of water when cycling for extended periods of time, so it’s worth investing in water bottle holders that fit onto your bicycle frames. And it’s a good idea to have a pack of apples or some high-energy snacks to hand regardless of how often you plan to stop.
Have the right equipment
To ensure everyone has a comfortable cycling experience, they’ll need the right equipment. First and foremost, be sure your child hasn’t outgrown their bicycle, and have a few practice bike rides around your local area if it’s been a while since they last rode. Next, give each bike a thorough service and check the tyres and brakes are in good condition.
If you have very young children, ensure the bike seat is securely attached and comfortable. For those in the awkward in-between stage of being able to cycle independently and still needing a little assistance, you could consider a tandem bicycle so they can keep up without overexerting themselves.
There’s nothing better for children than exploring the great outdoors, so by choosing a cycling holiday in Scotland you’ll be positively impacting their development as well as making some lifelong memories as a family. With incredible scenery and plenty of things to keep everyone engaged, you’re sure to have a lot of fun on your next family cycling holiday.