Suffolk and Constable Country Self-Guided Cycling Holiday
Self-Guided | 5 days | 4 nights | From £429 per person
Cycle through timeless landscapes captured on canvass by one of England’s most renowned landscape painters, John Constable. The delightful rural county of Suffolk and the beautiful valleys on the border with Essex have to be one of England’s best kept secrets.
Discover villages lined with pink, thatched cottages, dotted with oakbeamed pubs and impressive flint churches that are miracles of medieval architecture. Cycling is mostly on very quiet country lanes, linked by short stretches of busier road. The terrain ranges from flat to rolling countryside (with some steep, but short, hills).
Day 1: A Gentle Introduction to Suffolk
Travel to Needham Market
Explore Needham’s marvelous medieval High Street, a short riverside walk from our base at Alder Carr Farm, or enjoy a leisurely lunch or afternoon tea at the Barn Café. A pleasant ride along quiet country lanes takes you to your first accommodation.
Cycling: 14 miles
Accommodation: Ensuite rooms at country inn, near Stoke Ash
Day 2: Through Debenham to Hadleigh
Head through the lanes to Debenham, an historic village with its overhanging, half-timbered houses, antique shops and huge church. Continue south through pretty Coddenham, perhaps dropping in to see the 13c round towered church at Aldham before arriving in the fine ‘Wool Town’ of Hadleigh.
Here a Tudor red brick Deanery Tower sits alongside the most impressive medieval church and the main street is lined with jettied houses with bright, decorative plasterwork (pargetting)
Cycling: 30 miles
Accommodation: Ensuite rooms in historic 5 star guest accommodation in Hadleigh
Day 3: In The Footsteps of John Constable
Head east, passing TV’s ‘Jimmy’s Farm’ on the way, for lunch at on old smuggler’s inn on the River Orwell. Continue through rolling countryside towards the timeless English beauty of the Stour Valley and Dedham Vale, often referred to as “Constable Country”.
Here the water meadows of the River Stour and Flatford Mill are the still recognisable subjects of the renowned 18th century landscape artist, John Constable. Like the painter’s birthplace at East Bergholt, the villages here, both great and small, have impressive churches and some wonderful half-timbered houses and rambling inns, testimony to the medieval wealth of the local wool trade. Your destination, Stoke by Nayland, is no exception.
Cycling: 27-40 miles (longer distance features the riverside pub)
Accommodation: ensuite rooms in 17c village inn, Stoke by Nayland
Day 4: Wool Towns & The Prettiest Villages
Head first to the pretty village of Boxford and then on to historic Kersey, which thrills with a downhill from church to watersplash. Together with nearby Chelsworth, it counts amongst the prettiest villages in England.
More historic farmsteads and villages line the undulating route to the East Anglia’s most renowned wool town gem, Lavenham.
Here the magnificent halftimbered Guildhall of Corpus Christi sits on the picturesque market square, surrounded by a labyrinth of tiny medieval streets with the mighty church of St Peter and St Paul looking down over the village.
On then to the antique shops and stately homes of Long Melford before you find your accommodation adjacent to the picture-book village green of Cavendish.
Cycling: 29 miles
Accommodation: ensuite rooms at 16c village inn, Cavendish
Day 5: Pedal, Pub Lunch & Home
More quiet lanes, rolling countryside, pretty villages and country pubs on your way back to Needham Market. An option for those not in a rush is to drop in at the eccentric, oval stately home of Ickworth House a few miles outside the ancient market town of Bury St Edmunds
Cycling: 33-40 miles (longer distance features detour to Ickworth House)
Return your bike at our workshop at Alder Carr Farm, perhaps enjoying tea and cake in the Barn Café before starting your journey home.
Cycling is mostly on very quiet country lanes, linked by stretches of busier roads.The terrain ranges from flat to rolling countryside (with some steep, short hills).
Where is the starting point of the holiday?
Tour Route Map
This tour starts in Needham Market. This map is to be used as a guide to the area only.
The Suffolk and Constable Country tour stays in local guesthouses carefully chosen for their location, hospitality and proximity to your tour route.
Your stay includes the daily transfer of luggage to the next hotel and permanent assistance in case of problems.
• En-suite accommodation (based upon two people sharing a room)
• Baggage transportation from hotel to hotel
• Route planning: – We will supply clients with one map book per room (officially licensed prints of OS 1:50,000 maps) with recommended and alternative routes marked
• emergency breakdown service
• Hire of 21 speed hybrid touring bicycle with basic tools, lock pump and pannier/bag when required
Suffolk and Constable Country, 5 days, 4 nights
All prices are per person and include bike hire.
Category A: 3*** and 4**** Hotels
A: Price per person: £429 per person, based on 2 persons sharing including bike hire departing on Monday, Tuesday, Saturday and Sunday.
B: Price per person: £459 per person, based on 2 persons sharing including bike hire departing on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday.
Single supplement A dates:
£139 per tour (A)
Single supplement B dates:
£139 per tour (B)
Availability:1st April to 26th October 2017
Duration: 5 days
Bike Hire: Included
Price excludes: flights/train fares, entrance fees, not mentioned meals, drinks with meals and entrances to local attractions.
Holiday Price: £429
Single Supplement: £129