The Kyle Line & North Coast 500 - 5 Days Highland Hotel, Strathpeffer 3 Star 08/03/20215319.00 . Sample amazing local produce from incredible fresh seafood, organic meats and of course haggis, with the odd wee dram. We’d suggest reading this in parallel with our other North Coast 500 content, which includes our guide to planning a North Coast 500 road trip, our seven day NC500 camping itinerary (you can switch out campsites for B&Bs! There’s also no right or wrong direction to drive it. There is no strict North Coast 500 route – where you stop, stay and play is entirely up to you but here is a flavour of the villages and activities we think make up the best North Coast 500 places to visit. I’m getting ahead of myself – that’s day 5, a cold wet Thurso day, on my journey cycling the north coast 500. Stunning scenery, and we got lucky with the weather. Torridon-Inchnadamph Hotel via Gairloch and Dundonell – 108m, 7700ft I’m a little bit wary of these advertised driving routes though. This 500 mile coastal route spans the north coast of the Highlands taking in the best bits of this glorious region. 5 of us did it clockwise last year. Carefully plan your route. Tongue-Helmsdale via Thurso and John o’Groats, 114m, 7000ft Could potentially be supported by someone in a van, or could use some bikepacking bags and travel light – staying in B&Bs / hotels. Hh asked me if I fancied doing this with him next year. In fact, feedback this year is that drivers thoughout the Highlands and Islands are almost universally courteous and patient. The North Coast 500 Only three years since its inception, the North Coast 500 has already become one of the worlds iconic road touring routes. Jog to Golspie – 70 miles -OK but the wind! Price. The North Coast 500 is a 516-mile (830 km) scenic route around the north coast of Scotland, starting and ending at Inverness Castle. Being able to store our camping kit/food/clothes in the car whilst we cycled was invaluable. He told me about the North Coast 500, a new 500-mile (800km) route around the coast in the far north-west of Scotland. Far better off doing a variation on the route and going up (or down) the middle through Altnaharra. One of the most invaluable bits of kit is midge protection…, Our strategy was to break the back of the trip towards the start, thus giving us leeway in the latter stages. Clockwise or anticlockwise? Please share to let it be more widely known that this information is out there and readily available to anyone thinking about cycling the NC500 or anywhere in the North Highlands. Thanks chaps. It is important to plan ahead! On a light road bike, the whole Applecross circuit is just wonderful…when the weather is good and gives you the west coast light in the evening coming back to Sheildaig…. This resulted in the first three days being very long, in some extremely hilly terrain. See this route and plan your own adventure with komoot! For most folk it’s beyond a weeks cycling so many want to chop it into two bit or just do the most scenic “central” bit north of Kyle to Tongue. This resulted in the first three days being very long, in some extremely hilly terrain. Popular with motorists and motor homers, we think the best way to experience the NC500 is by bicycle. The North Coast 500 (The NC500) is an official route created by the North Highland Initiative to “bring together the best of the north Highlands of Scotland in one iconic tour”. In August 2016 four of us tackled the NC500 as a rehearsal for our round the world cycle trip. We drove from Aberdeen to Inverness, although it is possible to arrive by plane, bus or train. The goal is to go from the south of England to the north of Scotland. Posted in: Touring. Anyway, any feedback and tips appreciated. In my view this is a great way to do it as the last thing you want to be doing is having to churn out 100 mile+ days when you are exhausted from 4 days on the bike already. Welcome to the Scottish Highlands! For anyone that’s done it, does this sound like an ok itinerary? For extreme tourers this would maybe be fun, but given our level of fitness, it would have been impossible to complete the route in 6 days with so much additional weight. Applecross - Inverness I live on the west coast on the NC500 route and do a lot of cycling on these roads. If you are camping, don’t be afraid to go wild. Thanks folks, much appreciated. This was day 1 on the North Coast 500, an impressive 500 mile journey around the Scottish coastland and my first cycle touring adventure since childhood. Also known as the C2C and Coast to Coast Cycle route. Fingers crossed weather holds fir next 2-3 weeks! On the first day we made it to Applecross which meant crossing Bealach-na-Ba (, We decided to camp each night which definitely adds an extra element of challenge, but also fun to the trip. This itinerary has been calculated based on around 65 miles cycling per day, slightly more some days and considerably less on others. © 2017 by Katie Halliday & Euan Paterson. None of us ride competitively, or for a club, but we can all cover 100 miles in a day and tackle some tasty hills. The Bealach Cafe – very nice indeed and the Whistlestop at Kinlochewe, seem to see lots of our ex-pupils working in these in the holidays! We left Inverness, driving over the Telford Street bridge to and made our first stop in Beauly. All of the Airbnb apartments in this self-contained apartments guide have private parking so you don’t have to pay extra during your road trip.. North Coast 500 Hotels CycleFans bicycling social marketplace. Take some extra strong bug spray, and I’d recommend a midge head net for when things really get tough. We opted to complete the ride in eight days (many people do less with the record of 31 hours set by James McCallum) but looking back, I wish we would have given ourselves nine or even 10 days. Day 5. North Coast 500 Itinerary. The minimum number of days we’d recommend to drive the North Coast 500 is 5 days, but 7 to 10 days would be ideal. North Coast 500. Hope this information will be useful to you! The brilliant route around Scotland's north coast by touring bike over 10 days in July 2019. Classifieds Rules Took 5 and a half days – on a salsa fargo with panniers -should have travelled much lighter. Lee Craigie and half a dozen mates are doing it in a relay fashion this weekend, hoping to get round faster than Mark Beaumont did. This route has become such a magnet for car clubs and boy racers that I wouldn’t like to bike it now. So I’m further enthused! The North Coast 500 is Scotland’s answer to route 66 and one of the most beautiful coastal touring routes in the world (well, we think so, anyway! The cattle grid at the bottom is very smooth…’nuf said!! day 2. The prevailing wind on the west coast comes from the south west so doing the route clockwise is a sensible idea. If you’re doing the opposite, and cruising dow… In 1988, The Proclaimers penned Scotland’s alternative national anthem: I’m Gonna Be (500 miles). Please adjust accordingly to your capabilities as this itinerary is aimed at the serious cyclist. The train or bike bus is an alternative. He’s always done heaps of road biking far more than he’s ever done on an mtb. I carried (and sent on for day 2) 1. You’ll also need a lot of blankets, a heater, and an emergency kit in case of being snowed in. It’s stunning though, I’ll be back fat biking around Assent with a fishing rod attached to my pack next year. It is legal to, A full breakdown of our route and camping spots can be found, This has been a dummy run ahead of our world cycle so if you would like to hear more you can sign up to our blog, and/or check out our website, ranked as the UK’s hardest climb on a bike. Technically the North Coast 500 is 516 miles, but let’s be honest – 500 sounds way better. I have 5-7 days to spare. 128K likes. The North Coast 500 is the most popular road trip in Scotland and we’ve put together a comprehensive 7 day North Coast 500 itinerary to help drivers navigate this driving route. Here are a few things we’d advise you to do if you’re doing a similar trip. We decided to camp each night which definitely adds an extra element of challenge, but also fun to the trip. ... North Coast 500 - 5 Days. To ‘enjoy’ the ride & the surroundings to full potential you need longer than 3 days though Welcome to Peak Tour’s very own version of the North Coast 500, our stunning new cycling tour of the Highlands of Scotland. Goes without saying ensure your bike is properly serviced, and at least someone in your groups knows basic bike maintenance. A full breakdown of our route and camping spots can be found here. North Coast 500. Me and a friend rode it last september and did it in 5 days light touring using youth hostels. What set up would you choose for 500 miles around the Scottish Coastline? Experience Scotland's beautiful North Coast in this 5 day epic adventure by bike. North Coast 500 route maps are made easily available online plan your route around Scotland's Route66 NC500 with google maps & plan your route around the Coasts of the Northern Scottish Highlands as you drive through some of the most beautiful scenery in the world, visit famous location made popular by movies like Braveheart filmed in Glen Nevis by Fort William Bikepacking Scotland\'s North Coast 500 In Three Days | Si\'s Ultra Endurance Challenge ). I’d much rather take that than the A835/A837 to Inchnadamph. But the North Coast 500 is designed for touring, sightseeing, and taking things slowly. I think he’s mad, I’ve never been into road biking. Day 3. ullapool to tongue The alternative would have been to ride touring bikes, carrying all our kit with us. We’re very lucky in Scotland to have such liberal access laws so make the most of it. This detailed day-by-day 1 week North Coast 500 road trip itinerary covers all the basic details (mileage, general route) and sightseeing highlights along the approximately 500 mile route. If you can afford it, there are plenty guest houses on the route but ensure you book in advance. Goes without saying ensure your bike is properly serviced, and at least someone in your groups knows basic bike maintenance. He’s shared a video of his trip at: https://vimeo.com/171766940. Be ready for the roller-coaster of a road as you head South East around the coast back to Sheildaig – great fun on empty roads but narrow with poor sight lines when the trees are in full leaf. And as others have mentioned, the A9 / A99 road on the east coast is absolutely dreadful to ride on. This route has been recently branded the “North Coast 500” and has been a huge hit with Scots and tourists alike. The North Coast 500 website has tips on what to do should you encounter animals on the route, though locals have said tourists are stopping to take pictures. Definitely. On the first day we made it to Applecross which meant crossing Bealach-na-Ba (ranked as the UK’s hardest climb on a bike) after an already long day, and then spinning out a 117 mile day to Ullapool the next day which was among the hilliest, most technical cycling I’ve ever done. The topic ‘North Coast 500 – anyone done it?’ is closed to new replies. Applecross to ullapool – 117 miles – long day Inchnadamph-Tongue via Kylesku and Durness – 100m, 9000ft We had an absolutely fantastic time cycling the North Coast 500 and would recommend anyone to do it. One tip for Ullapool – all the chip shops close at 9pm so make sure you get in early to avoid disappointment, this was particularly crushing after we found this out after an 117 miles day and couldn’t get the famous Ullapool fish supper! Last weekend thirteen women and thirteen bikes gathered at Inverness's Velocity Bike Cafe, ready to ride the North Coast 500 - this time not as a 36-hour team time trial, but as a far more civilised eight-day tour. Home page. There's nothing quite like the freedom of the long open road. Carefully plan your route. Or I’d do it away from predictably busy times. This will be a challenging 500+ mile supported ride over 7 Days, stopping at campsites along the route. That’s coming from some European riders too. Contact Us Forum Rules NC500: Ride Scotland’s North Coast 500 | Downloadable .gpx sat-nav maps 4th October 2016 Adventure Bikes , Maps In Motorcycle Sport & Leisure’s November issue (674), around-the-world adventurer Nathan Millward takes a Honda CB500X around the stunning new NC500 – the 500 mile route around Scotland’s north coast. North Coast 500 7-day Itinerary Arguably one of the best road trips in the world! Privacy FWIW we’ve had quite a few customers on the NC500 this year and none have reported any issues with traffic. How Long SHOULD you spend on the NC500 is the better question to ask, and to that my answer is between 7-14 days.When we first set off on the North Coast 500, we spent a total of 8 days … Durness to JOG – 93 miles – easier the further east you go 3 long, tough days stopping in Ullapool & Thurso overnight. LOL – I was just about to post a link to your blog . In 2019, this new 800-mile mainly off-road and carfree cycle route between England and the north coast of Scotland was created. Travel our North Coast 500 cycling holiday to experience a satisfying active journey – swap four wheels for two! fraochmor – thanks for the long post and the promise of more cycling stuff on the website soon, sounds good. Login/cookie issues? The newly established route winds its way around the most northerly area of Scotland. When I turned off the route at Unapool and went down to Inchnadamph, the roads returned to peaceful solitude. The North East 250 explores everything for which Scotland is famous in a unique Scottish road trip taking you through the whisky distilleries of Speyside, the spectacular mountain passes of the Cairngorms National Park, the famous castles of Royal Deeside, the Granite City of Aberdeen, the rugged North Sea coastline to the east, and the picturesque seaside villages of the Moray Firth Coast. Any further advice from anyone? If you have any questions please get in touch. Most drivers are kind to cyclists ascending long steep climbs. We reckon that it’s better to pass the bottom of Stac Polly on the way to Lochinver and we have a couple of better options for the East once you get around Dornoch. In 1988, The Proclaimers penned Scotland’s alternative national anthem: I’m Gonna Be (500 miles). This midge forecast tool I’ve just discovered is great. The North Coast 500 Only three years since its inception, the North Coast 500 has already become one of the worlds iconic road touring routes. I did a section of it in mid-September, had a route from Ullapool > Drumrunie > Inverkirkcraig > Lochinver and then picked up the NC500 where it goes round to Clashnessie and Drumbeg. The 7 Day “Tourer” challenge is suitable for sportive riders who want to challenge themselves over a 7 day cycling touring adventure around the stunning North Coast 500 route. Returning from a Torridon mountain bike trip we stopped in at the Whistlestop, outside was a guy doing a bit of credit card touring which hatched the idea for the mini tour. Before you set off it is worth reading up on the rules of the road in Scotland – Visit Scotland have a great video guide to how to drive in Scotland . Good to see! Golspie to inverness – 60 miles ok butthe wind – the A9 gets busy. If you are camping, don’t be afraid to go wild. Many of the roads are single track and are home to highland coos, sheep, geese and all manner of other travellers. Hugely impressive feat, fair play to them! £24 for two adults, one night. The weather was pretty good And so the time to start preparing the kit had arrived. The lowest rainfall months in Scotland are generally late spring/early summer according to the met office. We’re suggesting some alterations to the published route to better cater for cyclists. Davy Zyw. If the Cromarty-Nigg ferry is running then that’s a good option too (just don’t ask what the locals are called). Then the North Coast 500 is for you! There is a 519 mile road route, running in a circular loop from Inverness in the east, cross country to the west, up the coast, across the northern highlands and back down the east coast from John O’Groats. We have also had convoys of traffic, mostly 5-10 motorbikes or sports cars, but one recent convoy in support of Scottish independence was reported to be about 70 vehicles; I got stuck in it! ? Last weekend thirteen women and thirteen bikes gathered at Inverness's Velocity Bike Cafe, ready to ride the North Coast 500 - this time not as a 36-hour team time trial, but as a far more civilised eight-day tour. These itineraries are based on the minimum amount of time we recommend to allocate for your journey. Helmsdale to Inverness, Just seen the wee taster vid or the girls who did it in 36hrs non stop. Gave up taking photos on day 2 as seemingly every five minutes there was an amazing view of something. We opted to complete the ride in eight days (many people do less with the record of 31 hours set by James McCallum) but looking back, I wish we would have given ourselves nine or even 10 days. That’s coming from some European riders too. (The A897 may take some Dounreay commuting traffic on Sunday evenings/Monday mornings and Friday afternoons). Plotted with the plotaroute.com route planner. Full breakdown of route below. This version takes you from Wirksworth. I agree with the post above, the Inverpolidh road south of Lochinver is brilliant but perhaps they haven’t included it as it just wouldn’t take the traffic so I’m pleased it isn’t on the NC500. I’d love to do this route too. The Bealach na Ba over to Applecross and around the coast to Sheildaig is fabulous (my favourite ride). Kapka Kassabova gets her kicks from wild beaches, high passes and spooky ruins The goal is to go from the south of England to the north of Scotland. Not seen him in 5 years or so. In many ways, the route as it stands does end in an anti-climax. Fully supported with experienced ride guide and support car - come join us on our next NC500 Cycling Challenge. Only had one camper van on the Bealach Na Ba and that was around 1030 in the morning on a sunny day. Both days were fantastic though and the fact we broke these two days early on meant we could relax a bit from day 4 onwards. 140 miles from the Irish Sea (Whitehaven or Workington) to the North … That said, we did it in August and had a week of glorious sunshine without a breath of wind, so the only hard and fast rule is that there are no hard and fast rules! £875.00 based on 2 people sharing a … You could miss out on some fantastic and very quiet alternatives. Therefore, we'd personally recommend seven to ten days to drive the North Coast 500 days as perfect for most of you. Helmsdale-Inverness via Glenmorangie Distillery and Dingwall, 73m, 3000ft. Twenty-seven years later, the North Highland Initiative created a 500-mile route around Scotland’s most northerly coastal roads. There are some sections I would avoid as they are really not good for cycling (but then I am not used to urban cycling and traffic). This version takes you from Wirksworth. Hi The Bealach na Ba over to Applecross and around the coast to Sheildaig is fabulous (my favourite ride). I’ve a sneaking desire to join him but I doubt my fitness levels. Personally, I wouldn’t take the A9 trunk road back from Thurso/Wick to Inverness – I would cut cross country from Loch Hope, Tongue, Bettyhill or Melvich to join the A9 at Helmsdale or Lothbeg – some lovely quiet singletrack unclassified and B roads over the wild open flow country – not to be done into a strong southerly! Always one for a challenge, but unwilling to walk 500 miles, I set about trying to cycle the route non-stop, laying down a time-to-beat on Scotland’s The next day’s cycle ride was the part I’d been looking forward to … I have never cycled it and wouldn’t want to. Komoot user Global Cycling Network recorded a road ride: North Coast 500 - Scotland Bikepacking Adventure with Mark Beaumont. If you cycle it watch out for the level crossing at Garve and walk it as signed!! The North Coast 500, often described as Scotland’s Route 66, take in some of Scotland’s most impressive wild places, from the mountains and lochs of Wester Ross … The North Scotland 500 is a cycle friendly route that closely follows Scotland's famous North Coast 500, starting from Inverness. Any thoughts welcome. Inverness to applecross If you plan to speed around, you could do it with 3 full days … This route has been recently branded the “North Coast 500” and has been a … Experience the unique scenery of the west coast from rugged coastlines, white sandy beaches to dramatic mountain peaks. I’ve noticed a real increase in the number touring / fast touring cyclists already this year (NW Highlands). The History, Heritage and Archaeology and the Luxury itinerary are available to view fully, however to unlock the full NC500 itineraries, you […] Other benefits of the car include having support if there is an accident/mechanical issue, having someone free to do a food/drinks run whilst the rest are cycling, and have someone free to scout a good camp/lunch spot so reducing the pressure on the cyclists. The afternoon was spent… This simple and spacious site will allow you to take out the awning, and enjoy the final of many North Coast 500 campsites. The Official Facebook page for the North Coast 500. North Coast 500. You won’t find any NC500 signs but navigation is very easy, especially once you get beyond the network of minor roads out east between Tain, Inverness and Contin. This year, felltop and I are certain that there is more traffic on these roads; cars, cyclists and motor bikes. In my view this is a great way to do it as the last thing you want to be doing is having to churn out 100 mile+ days when you are exhausted from 4 days on the bike already. Full Official North Coast 500 Route - 503.7 mi, +30443 ft. Bike ride in Inverness, Scotland Jimmy Mac did it in June, smashing the record, and raising a bunch of cash for charity. INverness to applecross -82 miles – easy first 70 miles then the pass. Ride the best sections of the spectacular NC 500 touring route. This blog will hopefully give any potential cyclists an insight into what to bring and how to prepare! ITINERARY Day 1 - 64miles (2450ft elevation gain) Day 2 - 69miles (7230ft elevation gain) Day 3 - 80miles (4552ft elevation gain) Day 4 - 81miles (4428ft elevation gain) Bringing together just over 500 miles of stunning coastal scenery, the route follows the main roads along the coastal edges of the North Highlands. Cheers Never-ending back roads, wide meandering country tracks and beautiful bends through some of Scotland's finest coastal scenery are just a few things you can expect along the North Coast 500.Strap yourself in for the road trip of a lifetime. Day 16. A truly unique Scottish cycling experience, our 7 day North Coast 500 is incredible. Trying to ride it in five days is going to be tough, and you’ll miss out on off-bike time to enjoy places along the route. The North Coast 500 (Scotland’s answer to route 66) is a 516-mile scenic route around the north coast of Scotland, starting and ending in Inverness. Share: A mighty 500 miles in just 3 days all around the coast of Scotland, with Mark Beaumont, the Round The World by bike World Record Holder? The roads are almost totally traffic free but roll very slowly due to the surface. Great cycling roads up there, but I’d echo what others have said; don’t get too hung up on following the official route. Would love to spend longer doing it, but limits on holidays / family commitments probably means 5 days maximum. The descent to Applecross has some great fast sections but some blind bends as well. This slightly alternative North Coast 500 was made in collaboration with the people behind the official driving route, to make an official NC500 Cycle Route. This was part of a recent mini tour and have to agree it was wonderful. As there were four of us, and none wanted to be full time support driver, we split the driving each day meaning each of us got a rest from the bike. Always one for a challenge, but unwilling to walk 500 miles, I set about trying to cycle the route non-stop, laying down a time-to-beat on Scotland’s North Coast 500 itinerary day 2: Inverness to Torridon. Mrs Felltop is in correspondence with them, and they seem to be receptive to ideas. The North Coast 500 takes you over 500 miles around the north coast of Scotland. Route map for 'North Coast 500 - Day 4' - a 198.2km cycle route near Rhiconich, UK. This did cut down the total mileage which may not appeal to the hard core, but was a welcome break for us as we were on the limit at the end of most days… As we were trying to keep costs down, we camped every night. Dismiss, Viewing 40 posts - 1 through 40 (of 95 total), Premier Partners for Singletrack issues & exclusive subscriber perks, Metcheck MTB Weather Forecasts At A Glance, https://www.northcoast500.com/interactive-map.aspx, The Self Improvement Edition: Fresh Goods Friday 532, Singletrack Podcast – Where we try to unscramble what Brexit means for us, How A Singletrack Membership Can Save You From Polar Bears, This topic has 94 replies, 2 voices, and was last updated. Two main changes spring to mind; the NC500 misses out the “wee mad road of Inverpolly” and it uses the A9 down the East Coast. Lochinver to Ullapool. ), our 1 week NC500 itinerary, our 5 day NC500 itinerary, and our guide to where to stay on the North Coast 500. So far, I have written two NC500 cycling blogs on the official NC500 web site; June 2016 giving road safety advice about level crossings and single track roads and August 2016 about the cycle shops and repair options on the route with some tips about the Bealach na Ba…and more to come! North Coast 500 cycle tour, a unique experience. Twenty-seven years later, the North Highland Initiative created a 500-mile route around Scotland’s most northerly coastal roads. The route starts in the northern city of Inverness, then weaves along the west coast to Applecross and then northwards towards the bustling towns of Torridon and Ullapool. Inverness Castle, the roads are north coast 500 cycle 5 days universally courteous and patient cycle balances! 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