Whether it’s bombing downhill, racking up serious mileage or simply soaking up spectacular scenery, there’s a mountain biking trip to get your summer off on a roll. Here’s new digital magazine Altitude’s pick of six of the best…
Clock up some mileage: France/Switzerland
Take your holiday at your own pace with Flowmtb’s (020 8123 5654) package to Morzine, France, staying in their cosy Chalet La Musardiere. You get access to the largest network of trails in the world, with routes to explore in neighbouring Switzerland too. There’s something for everyone, from beginners to hardcore pros, with hundreds of miles of cross-country stamina-testing routes, adrenalin-pumping downhills including a World Cup course, and the freeride park for those who just like to show off. A seven-night, chalet-board stay starts from Є445 and includes use of GPS and marked maps. Guiding can be arranged on request.
Circle Mont Blanc: France
Get a 360° view of the mighty mountain on this trip with MBMB (023 9223 3520) which starts in Chamonix and, over five days, takes you over three national borders into Switzerland, Italy and finally back into France. You ride over four mountain passes in excess of 2,000m so there’s lots of cycling above the tree line, and stunning views across the Alps to reward your hard work. The trip costs £575 and includes seven nights’ half-board accommodation, Geneva airport transfers, five days’ guiding and a support vehicle to carry all your luggage.
Pedal the Pyrenees: France
With 400km of marked trails and your hosts Angela and Ian’s expert knowledge of endless unmarked routes, Altitude Adventure (0871 550 4095) will turn the Cerdagne Valley – 15km from the Spanish border – into a giant playground for pedal pushers. Their Adventure Trails trip tends towards all-day adventures, with epic descents, big drops and ridgeline traverses. The trip starts from £450 and includes seven nights’ half-board accommodation, packed lunches, airport transfers and five to six days’ guiding.
Cross a country: Scotland
Set yourself the challenge of crossing from one side of Scotland to the other with Wilderness Scotland’s (0131 625 6635) Coast-to-Coast guided trip. You’ll spend the week immersed in the stunning scenery of the Scottish Highlands as you cover an exhilarating 400km and over 4,000m of ascent and descent from Aberdeen to Ardnamurchan Point. Coast-to-coast trips start from £945 and include seven nights’ B&B accommodation, packed lunches, guiding for the entire trip and a support vehicle to carry all your luggage.
Off the beaten track: Switzerland
It’s all about the personal touch with Bike Verbier (0041 277 7152 47). Hosts Lucy and Phil have been riding Verbier’s trails for years and have endless secret spots and hidden paths up their sleeves that they’ll show you during the five days you spend with them on the mountain. They also know that biking takes a lot of energy so they provide hearty meals and a pick-me-up afternoon tea at their comfy chalet in the small village of Etiez, which allows easy access to Verbier’s lifts. Seven nights’ chalet-board accommodation starts from CHF995 and includes airport transfers, five days’ guiding, a packed lunch on five days and use of their workshop facilities.
Get gnarly: Whistler, Canada
Mix up big mountain riding and sessions in the park on this holiday, suitable for all levels, which offers two days of guiding – one to introduce you to Whistler’s trails and another to show you the ropes in the resort’s bikepark. The trip with Ticket2Ride BC (0845 301 6825) starts from C$500 (C$425 for early bookers) and includes transfers from Vancouver airport, seven nights’ B&B accommodation, five evening meals, two days’ guiding, a one-day bikepark lift pass and mechanical assistance. You can also add on extra days of guiding, floatplane trips into the British Columbia wilderness and day heli trips.
About Altitude magazine
Altitude magazine is your digital guide to the mountains in summer. Published by VOS Media, organisers of the London Bike Show, The Outdoors Show and the Ski and Snowboard Show, the magazine contains juicy holiday ideas, the latest gear and fantastic competitions to enter.
You can find more mountain bike holidays through MuchBetterAdventures