Moderate
Difficulty level
Cycling
Activity (Bike)
7 Night, 8 Day
Duration

Wales: Cardiff to Holyhead Bike

Seven nights; seven days of moderate to challenging bike touring on paved roads and car-free bicycle paths.

“The route was spectacularly beautiful.” – Ann P. & Jim C.



WHY THIS TRIP?

  • Celtic mystery.
  • Enchanting countryside with ideally challenging cycling.
  • Steam trains, mining caverns, ancient castles.
  • Breathtaking moorlands and ocean views.
  • Sincere Welsh hospitality.

 

ROUTE EXPECTATIONS:

Requiring moderate fitness levels, these cover terrain with hills and valleys, and tend to include distances of 50-80km (30-50mi.)/day cycling, or 3-6 hours of walking per day. Most Freewheeling Adventures fall into this category, and are suitable for most ability levels.


Moderate to challenging cycling on mostly paved roads and bike paths.


Daily Distance:

  • DAY 1: Introductions, ~60 km
  • DAY 2: ~53 km
  • DAY 3: ~64 km
  • DAY 4: ~80 km
  • DAY 5: ~55 km
  • DAY 6: ~60 km
  • DAY 7: ~76 km
  • DAY 8: Farewells

Wales: Cardiff to Holyhead Bike – Elevation Profile

(Click image to enlarge)

 

Not sure about difficulties, and support level? Check out our What to Expect page!

 

Start: The Angel Hotel, Cardiff, 09:00, day one. Cardiff can be reached easily by train from Manchester, Birmingham or London.

Finish: Llandudno, 09:00; day eight. From Llandudno there are frequent trains to Liverpool, Manchester, Birmingham or London.

Please contact us to arrange alternate plans, if necessary.

1

Into the Brecon Beacons, ~60km

Begin just north of Cardiff in Pontypridd, following the riverside Taff Trail to Merthyr Tydfil. Visit the Cyfarthfa Castle, built in 1824, and explore the collection of fine art and social history items housed in its museum. After lunch, cycle through spectacular valleys and along the banks of the Pontsticill and Talybont Reservoirs as you cross Brecon Beacons. LD (Meal inclusions provided for guided trips. Self-guided trips include breakfast only)

The Castle of Brecon Hotel, Brecon

2

Brecon, Talgarth and Builth Wells, ~53km

The morning’s hilly 16 km ride to the small market town of Talgarth – a perfect place to break for a snack or early lunch – is well rewarded throughout the day with panoramic views over the Brecon Beacons. In the afternoon, cycle north following the beautiful River Wye all the way to Builth Wells, your resting place for the night. BD

Caer Beris Manor, Builth Wells

3

Builth Wells, Elan Valley & Devil’s Bridge, ~64km

Relish an unforgettable journey through the Elan Valley along the shores of the Caban-coch, Garreg-ddu, Penygarreg, and Cronfa Ddwr Craig Goch Reservoirs. Further ascents provide a majestic tableau of the Elan and the Afon Ystwyth Valleys below. Your destination is Devil’s Bridge, a village best known for its unique namesake. Comprised of three coexistent, separate bridges, the structure overlooks the striking waterfalls which inspired Wordsworth’s “Torrent at the Devil’s Bridge”. BLD

The Hafod, Devil’s Bridge

4

Devil’s Bridge to Corris, ~80km

A wonderful, rolling bike ride today leads through pastures and woodlands away from traffic. Visit Machynlleth, the self-proclaimed first capital of Wales, where Owain Glyndwr held a parliament in 1404 after being crowned Prince. Take the funicular to the Centre for Alternative Technology (CAT) for views of Snowdonia National Park. BLD

The Old Vicarage, Corris; or, Gwesty Minfford Hotel, Tal-y-llyn

5

Corris to Harlech, ~55km

Return to Corris, then bike north following the Afon Dulas River. At Dolgellau the route veers westward and parallels the Afon Mawddach to the ocean, following the route of the Cambrian Rail line on a dedicated bike trail. Cross the river on the Barmouth Viaduct and travel along the coast toward Harlech Castle. Stop for a swim in the idyllic waters of Barmouth Beach or explore the dunes of Harlech Beach before retiring to your inn. B

Castle Cottage, Harlech

6

Harlech to Dinas, ~60km

Today’s route begins with some hilly sections in Snowdonia National Park before descending to the coastal villages of Portmeirion and Porthmadog. Visit Criccieth Castle or relax on the sandy beach below. The afternoon ride includes a long stretch of the Lôn Eifion Trail, which boasts views of Llyn Peninsula to the southwest, Caernarfon Bay and Anglesey to the west and north, and the impressive mountains of Snowdonia to the east. Discover the UNESCO Worlds Heritage Site of Caernarfon Castle and the adjacent castle square, Y Maes. BD

Plas Dinas, Dinas; or, Ty Castell, Caernarfon

7

Caernarfon Castle, Menai Bridge, Anglesey & Holyhead, ~76km, 45-minute transfer to Llandudno

Head to the Isle of Anglesey using the historic Pont Y Borth at Menai Bridge. Explore the many sandy beaches on southern coast of Anglesey, and pay a visit to the South Stack Lighthouse, before skirting Holyhead Mountain and concluding your ride at the Holyhead Maritime Museum. After seeing the sights at the museum, you will be transferred to Llandudno, a lively seaside town where you can celebrate your feat. BLD

St George’s Hotel, Llandudno

8

Farewells

Your tour concludes following breakfast. B

All details and pricing are subject to change without notice.


Guided: C 4965 (per person, double occupancy)

Includes 8 days, 7 nights, 7 breakfasts, 4 lunches, 6 dinners, luggage handling, van and guide support, maps and route instructions, taxes


Self-Guided: C 3885 (per person, double occupancy)

Includes 8 days, 7 nights, 6 breakfasts, luggage transfers, necessary ground transportation, on-call emergency support, maps, route instructions, taxes


Single Occupancy: 995


Bike Rentals:

Hybrid-Fitness: 265

Aluminum Racing: 355

Carbon Racing: 455

Electric-Assist: 455


All details and pricing are subject to change without notice.


2022 Guided dates:

  • Jun 5-12
  • Sep 11-18

2023 Guided dates:

  • May 28-Jun 4
  • Sep 10-17

Self-Guided available any dates, except for those listed above. New dates are also welcomed for guided or private departures.

Interested in custom or private departures?


Please see above for accurate pricing and inclusions, unless we have proposed a customized trip for you and those details are provided in your custom proposal.

1. Choose an advertised date to join a small group, or see our Join a Group page to see where groups are already forming.

2. Pick your own dates. We will confirm quickly, and are happy to talk with you as you make your choice. If you would like a private guided date, price remains the same as advertised if you have at least six. If you prefer self-guided, we usually only require two participants to initiate a new date at the advertised price, and can sometimes reduce prices for you if you have four or more.

 
PLEASE NOTE: Trip Cancellation Insurance is highly recommended. If this is not provided by your credit card or elsewhere, please let us know and we can provide recommendations.

More Reading:


Shrouded in Celtic mystery, the countryside of Wales is both enchanting and perfect for cycling. There are steam trains, mining caverns, and ancient castles to see, and the breathtaking moorlands combine with ocean views to make it difficult to describe without using superlatives. These roads will take you to utterly gorgeous places. The Welsh people are refreshingly sincere with their hospitality, and the feeling here is of palpable comfort. We are excited to be able to offer you this adventure, and know you will be impressed by the combination of rewarding cycling, luxury, magic, history, and fun.