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Blog #7: Three of our Favourite Local Cycle Routes

August 2014

- Romsey to Southampton - 14 Miles
 
This is a great shorter route for people who...shall we say...might need to give the bike a dust over before hitting the road. This route starts you off at the small market town of Romsey and takes you south-east along the A27. Theres a great mix of quiet roads and off road paths so you can trundle along at your own pace and take in some of the great countryside views. If you’re a keen photographer, you might even want to bring your camera along and take some snaps.  
 
Heading towards Eastleigh, the route sees you pass through Lakeside Country Park where you can enjoy over 60 acres of woodland. There’s plenty of places to stop for a pitstop (and to catch your breathe!). The next leg of the journey sees you enjoy a stretch along the River Itchen right through to the much loved Itchen Park. 
 
The route comes to an end as you head past St Mary’s stadium, and continue on to the finishing point of Town Quay. From here, you’re perfectly located to ditch the bikes and enjoy a stroll down bustling Oxford Street! 
Romsey to Southampton
 
- Southampton to Portsmouth - 22 miles
 
This is a great all round ride that will get your blood pumping while you enjoy a whistle stop tour of the south coast. You’ll begin the route at the Itchen Bridge in Southampton, following the Solent Way down to Netley. This will bring you past Royal Victoria Park where you can stop and enjoy the breathtaking views across Netley Abbey and Southampton Water (resisting the urge for an afternoon paddle!) 
 
From here, you continue on to Hamble-le-Rice - a great half way point to stop and explore 
before you catch the ferry over the River Hamble to Warsash to finish the rest of the route. 
 
Once you have arrived in Warsash, the route then continues along the coast, passing Titchfield Haven Nature Reserve. If you’re lucky, you might be able to spot some of the nature and wildlife including  deer, foxes and wetland plants. To finish the route, you simply join the Gosport Ferry, which will take you to the end point of the route, Portsmouth Harbour. 
 
Southampton to Portsmouth
 
- Farnham to Winchester - 33 miles
 
This is a slightly more challenging ride, great for more frequent cyclists or beginners who want something a little more testing. This route sees you set off from the town of Farnham and head along a series of quiet roads designed perfectly for cyclists! As you head towards Alton, you enjoy a pleasant stretch through the royal Alice Holt Forest. 
 
As you continue on towards Winchester  there are some great views of the Avington Park and Arlebury Park country houses. Feel free to spend some time daydreaming and pretending you live there.  The final leg of the route guides you through New Alresford as you pass the River Alre and River Itchen ending up at Winchester Bus Station. From here, you’re ideally located to set off and enjoy everything the historic city of Winchester has to offer!
Farnham to Winchester
 
Cycling is now Britain’s third most popular sport, with people all over the country hitting two wheels and exploring their local area and beyond. From the fully fledged lyrica wearing enthusiasts, right through to the occasional tour de france watching beginners - there’s something for everyone! 
 
If cycling is your thing, or you just want to see some crazy people riding a bike into a lake, then you might be interested in popping along to the Big Bike Bash - a charity festival now in it’s fifth year. This is happening on the 22-25th August at Avon Tyrrell Outdoor Activity Centre in the New Forest and features 3 days of bike related activities with races and challenges for all ages and abilities. There are some amazing prizes to win, along with music and refreshments along with lots of activities for non-cyclists too! http://www.bigbikebash.co.uk/site-activities/
 

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