- UK’s favourite long distance cycle route
- Dramatic English landscapes
- Cycle friendly route
- Stress-free cycling complimented with an abundance of pubs and cafes en route
- Bike friendly B&Bs offering mouthwatering breakfasts
- Flexibility to choose your own start date or one of our great value scheduled departure dates
- Suitable for adults and older children
The approach and clarity is what makes Saddle Skedaddle an excellent organisation. For my wife and I, this coast to coast was our first organised ride. The whole experience was outstanding, with such attention to detail.
Getting to Newcastle or Penrith is easy. If you are planning to arrive by air, there is an airport at Newcastle with direct services to Newcastle Central train station. For those arriving by car, you will be able to leave your vehicle at your accommodation, or if the train is your preferred transport mode, you can either take a taxi from the station to your accommodation or it is just a short 10-15 minute walk away.
Please make sure that you let us know whether you prefer to arrive into Newcastle or Penrith at the time of booking.
- Meals: Breakfast
- Ascent: 1,100m
After an early breakfast, you will be met by our Skedaddle representative at your accommodation in either Newcastle or Penrith who will provide you with your hire bikes (if hiring), an Information Pack including route notes, maps and additional information for your trip. They will then transfer you to Whitehaven to begin your journey.
Whitehaven Harbour marks the start of your ride and it’s only a few pedals before you leave the somewhat industrial Cumbrian coast and reach some of the prettiest countryside in the UK. Initially following the Cumbrian Cycle Network, you will follow the route of a disused mineral railway to Kirkland. From here you follow quiet country lanes along an undulating route via Loweswater and Low Lorton to Whinlatter Pass. From here an excellent descent takes you through Braithwaite and Portinscale on the banks of the River Derwent to Keswick. Leaving Keswick you follow another railway line, this time alongside the River Greta. You will quickly pass near the sacred Castlerigg Stone Circle; a Bronze Age meeting place, followed by Threlkeld and your accommodation for the evening.
- Meals: Breakfast
- Ascent: 1,300m
Leaving Threlkeld the route is now one of quiet traffic free country lanes through hillsides dotted with small farms. Next place of interest is Greystoke Castle, former home of Lord Greystoke, on which the legend of Tarzan is based. If you‘re feeling a little peckish, or just fancy a rest and a cup of tea, then Greystoke Cafe is a must. Also known as the “cyclists barn” – you will find hot and cold drinks, cakes and other yummy treats, as well as towels, blankets, oil, bike pumps, maps and free juice for your bottles / Camelbaks.
Penrith follows, before you continue on to Edenhall and Langwathby. From here the route gets a little harder as you reach Hartside Pass (580 metres). If you know anyone who has done the C2C, this is ‘THE’ climb! Take a moment to stop and admire the spectacular views before we set off to our night’s rest in Alston.
- Meals: Breakfast
- Ascent: 1005m
Today you will encounter the hilliest and highest points of our trip. From Alston it’s a short, but tough climb up and over into the old lead mining village of Nenthead. Climbing again you will reach the highest point on the route, Black Hill (609 metres). After crossing Killhope top, you reach Allenheads. Not only boasting it’s the highest village in England, it’s also home to one of the quirkiest pubs – The Allenheads Inn. Containing rooms full of bric-a-brac and nic-naks it’s a challenge to negotiate your way to the bar…never mind from it! Just a few more miles before we get to Rookhope.
From Rookhope we skirt the contours of Stanhope Common on quiet lanes and continue along to Stanhope and then onto the last big climb of the trip, Crawleyside before arriving at your accommodation for the evening at Parkhead Station.
- Meals: Breakfast
- Ascent: 425m
This morning you will join the Waskerley Way which is a traffic free trail that takes in the rugged, expansive scenery of the North Pennines, and contours thankfully, pre-dominantly downhill towards the once thriving steel town of Consett.
With the hardest cycling behind, you head towards your goal of Tynemouth. The route then follows a pleasant green route leading over numerous bridges and old railway viaducts and affording great views of the countryside. On reaching Gateshead and the impressive Baltic Arts Centre you cross the Blinking Eye Millennium Bridge over the River Tyne into Newcastle. The Cycle Hub is situated on your right just after this and the perfect place for a well earned cuppa and a slice of delicious homemade cake. It’s dedicated to the cyclist and also the home of Saddle Skedaddle so why not come and say hello? Waving goodbye, you complete your final few miles of the coast to coast alongside the River Tyne to Tynemouth.
Congratulations – you’ve just Skedaddled the Coast to Coast!
We’ll meet you in Tynemouth and load your bikes up for the return trip to either Newcastle or Penrith.
This holiday uses part of the National Cycle Network operated by Sustrans, a charity devoted to promoting the use of sustainable transport. The route follows quiet country lanes, cycleways and paths including sections on old railway lines with gravel or cinder surface.
With a mix of tarmac and some hardpacked gravel surfaces, the ride can be completed on almost any type of bike. The first few miles leaving Whitehaven has some unavoidable hardpacked gravel sections along an old railway line. This section is suitable for road bikes when ridden with a little extra care. The majority of the route between Stanhope and Newcastle also has gravel surfaces, which can be ridden on a road bike with touring tyres fitted, however there is a tarmac alternative to the standard route if preferred. Most roadies tackling the route in 2 or 3 days prefer this option.
Leisure Cycling Grade
Distances generally between 20-45 miles / 32-72 kms per day
For the leisure cyclist with a good level of physical fitness
May include some steeper, cheeky climbs and possibly sections of varying terrain (eg. forest tracks, gravel paths etc)
Our grading guidelines have been carefully created based on our many years of cycling experience, as well as customer feedback from our trips. Of course, if you're still struggling to figure out where you fit on the scale, do feel free to give us a quick call and we'll be more than happy to help!
For more information about our grading system click here.
Is this suitable for you?
Although you may not cycle everyday, you do keep yourself relatively fit and maybe enjoy an afternoon out on your bike at the weekend. Your preference is perhaps for flatter terrain but you don’t mind tackling some hills, and the occasional steep climb if you can take it at your own pace. For those happy to tackle some ups and downs, and possibly some sections of varying terrain (eg. forest tracks, gravel paths etc) we’d recommend our grade 3 trips. We’d generally expect those on a Grade 3 holiday to have a decent level of physical fitness and be comfortable with some longer days in the saddle.
Super trip! We all really enjoyed it and thought the route was perfect with a great combination of quiet roads, cycle paths and forest trails.
Dates & Prices
Choose your own dates from £610 per person, just give us a call to check availability. Alternatively for a great value holiday select one of our scheduled weekend departures below:
Penrith Arrival only: 21 May, 09 Jul, 06 Aug and 10 Sep
Newcastle Arrival only: 11 Jun, 16 Jul, 20 Aug and 27 Aug
Penrith Arrival only: 20 May, 08 Jul, 05 Aug and 09 Sep
Newcastle Arrival only: 10 Jun, 15 Jul, 19 Aug and 26 Aug
A) Accommodation (shared twin rooms)
B) Meals as per the itinerary (B=Breakfast, L=Lunch, D=Dinner)
C) Skedaddle App to access holiday information and navigation
D) Detailed Skedaddle route notes and relevant maps
E) GPX files available upon request
F) Luggage transfer service
G) Skedaddle Local Representative
H) Emergency tool kit, pump etc. (if hiring your bike from Skedaddle)
What's not Included
A) Personal clothing and equipment
B) Travel insurance
C) Bar bills, telephone calls, souvenirs, etc.
D) Bike & helmet hire (available if required)
E) Travel or flight costs and charges for travelling with your bike (if applicable)
F) Single room option (may be available if required)
G) Entrance fees to cultural or historical sites and visitor centres
H) Other optional activities
Cycling Coast to Coast
Strap in as we take a closer look at this classic journey by bike! Here's everything you need to know...
Meet the team: Brian James
We take a moment to get to know our fellow Northerner with the help of a little Q&A...
Customer Story: C2C, a long way up!
Juliet attempts the ride from Whitehaven to Tynemouth - the classic C2C route
The Guardian (2020), 10 of the best fitness breaks in the UKAs seen in the press...
Depending on experience and fitness, Saddle Skedaddle’s self-guided 140-mile coast-to-coast cycling trip is offered as a three-, four- or five-day trip. Via country lanes, cycleways and paths, participants head from Whitehaven, in Cumbria, to Tynemouth near Newcastle – from the Irish to the North Sea – through the Lake District, and north Pennines, with plenty of viewpoints, pubs and cafes en route.
Our ‘holiday’ (we would prefer to call it a ‘challenge!‘) was superb! We had been unsure as to whether three days or four was appropriate and are glad we chose the four-day option.
Fiona, LondonThank-you for a really enjoyable holiday!
Every day was wonderful, there were high points on every day of the holiday and no low points. The information provided by the representative was invaluable. Without the information the holiday wouldn’t have gone as smoothly. He thought of things we needed to know but would never have thought to ask as well as answering the questions we did have. He was also pleasant and friendly and we feel went the extra mile to make our holiday special. Thank-you for a really enjoyable holiday!
Peter, PowysSaddle Skedaddle's service made this ride...
The approach and clarity is what makes Saddle Skedaddle an excellent organisation. For my wife and I, this coast to coast was our first organised ride. The whole experience was outstanding, such attention to detail. Being first timers I had several questions and all were dealt with by the appropriate expert with good humour. Nothing seemed too much trouble! A pity more organisations do not have the same approach. Can’t wait for the next holiday!
Lawrence, NottinghamshireOverall, a really good trip - as always with Skedaddle.
Super trip, we all really enjoyed it and thought the route was perfect with a great combination of quiet roads, cycle paths and forest trails. All the accommodation worked well with staff that were universally friendly and helpful. The GPX files worked well. Overall, a really good trip – as always with Skedaddle.