Garden of England Tour

Join one of our grand loop tours of the southeast counties of England, Kent and Sussex, known as “The Garden of England”.  Experience white horses in hillsides, stunning chalk cliffs overlooking the English Channel, grand cathedrals, royal castles, historic battle sites, and unsurpassed scenic cycling along quiet country lanes. This off-the-beaten-track tour offers a fantastic variety of landscapes, flora, sites, history, village life, and architecture.

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7 day, 7 night Itinerary:

Day 0 Thursday afternoon August 5, completing day 7 Thursday afternoon, August 12, 2021 (subject to minimum participation of 7)

$1525/person base price, E-bike $150, Single Supplement $325

8 day, 8 night Itineraries:  for those who’d like to spend some more time in one of the great towns on our route, this itinerary is the same as 7 day itinerary, but with an extra rest day in Canterbury to relax in the same B&B and enjoy the city.  Depending on interest level, the August 13-21 tour may be converted to the 7 day itinerary.

Day 0 Friday afternoon August 13, completing day 8 Saturday afternoon August 21, 2021

Day 0 Sunday afternoon August 22, completing day 8 Monday afternoon August 30, 2021

$1675/person base price, E-bike $175, Single Supplement $375

Level of Difficulty – Moderate to Difficult.  Although the mileage is very reasonable, days 4 and 6 are extremely hilly, especially with hybrid bikes off-road.  If you are not comfortable with challenging hills, I highly recommend you use an electric-assist bike to enable you to fully enjoy your vacation.

For a great overview of the entire tour, here’s a link to a longer 9 minute video one of our participants made!

Day 0 (afternoon before cycle tour).  We meet at our hotel in Royal Tunbridge Wells, site of the historic “Pantiles” pedestrian section of restaurants and shops, and check out our bikes.

Day 1,  26 miles. After a traditional full English Breakfast, we ride to Leeds Castle, called the “loveliest castle in Europe,” where we stay in a B&B on the grounds.

Day 2, 26 miles. Riding along the Pilgrim’s Path to Canterbury (where the famous Canterbury Tales were composed, beginning with “Whan that Aprille with his shoures soote”,  click here for short audio of the entire Prologue), where we’ll see the glorious cathedral and enjoy the large downtown pedestrian zone of museums, the “crooked bookstore”, and restaurants.

8-Day Itinerary, Day 3, rest day or optional ride.  Enjoy another day and night in this great city and historic B&B.  A short bike ride will be offered in the morning, or just enjoy the museums, shops, historic sites, parks, and cultural events in Canterbury.

Day 3 (4), 41 miles. We follow official bike routes through magnificent countryside to the Medieval City of Rye, one of the Cinque Ports designated to guard King Henry’s kingdom against invasion.

Day 4 (5), 33 miles. We ride to the site of the Battle of Hastings, where William the Conqueror defeated King Harold in 1066,  and then to the English channel and on to the grand Victorian Seaside town of Eastbourne.  Take in a concert at the Bandstand, a play at the theatre, or jazz at a local club.

Day 5 (6). Enjoy a day of leisure; swimming, shopping, hiking to the the Seven Sisters Park, which was called “the most relaxing place in the world” by CNN travel.

Day 6 (7),  22 miles. We cycle along the White Cliffs of Beachy Head,  then continue the day into the pastoral Cuckmere valley, with the quaint village of Alfriston, and up onto the magnificent vistas of the South Downs.   After cycling with the hikers, equestrians, and sheep sharing the trail, we go on to the Tudor village of Lewes for the night.

Day 7 (8), 28 miles. Our last day takes us through more great cycling countryside. We’ll then hop on the Bluebell Railway, an authentic 19th century steam-driven train, to cover the middle portion of the route, and finish our ride on the glorious Forest Way trail back to our starting point in Royal Tunbridge Wells.

What’s Included:

  • High quality hybrid or Electric bikes (extra fee) for comfortable riding on crushed-gravel cycle paths as well as roads.
  • Bicycle Helmets.
  • Lodging in beautiful B&B’s or small hotels, including one night at Leeds castle.
  • Luggage transport & emergency van support.
  • Full-time, on-road guide (Andy Brown).
  • Detailed electronic routes and cue sheets with descriptions.
  • Tour information booklet.
  • Advice with travel arrangements.
  • Full English breakfast every day.
  • Admission to Leeds Castle, Canterbury Cathedral, Hastings Battlefield & Museum, Rye Bell Tower, and Bluebell Railway steam train ticket.

What’s Not Included:

  • Transportation to and from the start of the tour.
  • Lodging before and after the tour.
  • Lunches, Dinners, or Drinks.
  • Additional arrangements necessary if you bring your own bike.

Location and Route of Tour

Kent and East Sussex are the Southeastern-most counties of England, which is one of the four semi-autonomous countries in the United Kingdom (the others are Wales, Scotland, and Northern Ireland).  They are the among the most temperate and wealthiest sections of the country, and are the closest to the European Continent.  Much of the southern coast consist of a chalky bedrock which forms the famous “White Cliffs of Dover” and the beautiful Beachy Head and 7 Sisters Cliffs that we will see on our tour.

We see our route below.   Once a booking is made, a detailed tour information booklet describes the route and tour in detail.

Contact for more details and to sign up!  Or get on our mailing list for updates.