Tour of England’s South West with Rob Bennett 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿

This week Rob Bennett takes us on a tour of the South West of England as we explore Cornwall, Devon and Somerset.

Rob recorded these routes to try and give a flavour of the region which is dominated by the sea, moors, and lots of pretty towns and villages.

This collection will give you a mix of routes that are both fun as well as challenging.

Enjoy!

CORNISH FISHING PORTS TWO

Ride around and out of the harbour area of Porthleven, where a hugely popular long running German TV series Rosamunde Pilcher is filmed. Then onto the ancient town of Marazion where at low tide the causeway links with the island of St Michael's Mount with its famous castle. The ride then takes the SW Coast path next to the shoreline to the large fishing port of Penzance.

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20.26km
DISTANCE
0:43:54
DURATION
197m
ELEVATION

NEWQUAY AND CORNWALL'S SURFING BEACHES

Newquay is the centre of Cornwall’s surfing culture and hosts the annual Boardmasters Festival, a major surfing event attracting the biggest bands in the world for live music. This ride leaves nearby Perranporth Beach and takes in some Cornish countryside before passing through the centre of Newquay, with views of the numerous beaches and surf.

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22.62km
DISTANCE
0:55:39
DURATION
373m
ELEVATION

DOC MARTIN COUNTRY

Starting from Rock (Cornwall’s popular celebrity haunt - Gordon Ramsey, Hugh Grant, Prince Harry), the ride soon passes the vast surfing beach of Polzeath and through rolling Cornwall countryside before reaching Port Isaac. This fishing village is used for the filming of Doc Martin, the TV series with a worldwide audience popularised in part due to the dramatic scenery. You will pass his home/surgery (up the last narrow hill with the link chain fence), as well as the village shop and Golden Lion pub on the quayside frequented by Doc Martin!

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23.86km
DISTANCE
1:00:32
DURATION
419m
ELEVATION

ENGLAND'S STEEPEST A-ROAD - PORLOCK HILL (OC-4)

Cyclists are welcome to try, but trucks and caravans are banned from driving up Porlock Hill due to the steepness! Official Climbs #4. Enjoy the challenge of cycling up this spectacular hill with 25% gradients on the two hairpins and 10% overall for the full 3.8Km (2.4 mile) climb.

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5.3km
DISTANCE
0:26:12
DURATION
391m
ELEVATION

DUNKERY BEACON (OC-5)

The ride starts with coast and moorland views before dropping sharply into and through Porlock. Official Climbs #5. A short steep climb along the narrow Chisland Drive warms you up for the main climb up to the Beacon. Initially through wooded slopes, the ride climbs steeply before opening out with typical southerly Exmoor views. Then the gradient eases somewhat for the final push to the top.

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13.89km
DISTANCE
0:46:01
DURATION
470m
ELEVATION

RURAL DEVON

A longish ride along the rolling Devon hills of the Exe Valley taking in many small villages and towns such as Tiverton, Cullompton and Bampton. The roads are generally quiet, quite narrow in places and frequented by many cyclists. This area of Devon is in the middle/eastern part of the county and is the flatter part, but only relatively so!

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62.21km
DISTANCE
2:21:09
DURATION
618m
ELEVATION

THE ENGLISH RIVIERA

This area in Devon is known as the English Riviera due to the sandy beaches, mild climate and tourist attractions. The ride starts on the sea wall in Teignmouth, crosses the River Teign and heads onto the 3 Riviera towns of Torquay (the more upmarket resort with its Victorian villas and marina), Paignton (family beaches) and Brixham (fishing port). It’s a lumpy coastal ride but with lots of flat promenade cycling!

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33.49km
DISTANCE
1:24:42
DURATION
521m
ELEVATION

DEVON IN THE SPRING

The daffodils are out as are the newly-born lambs!This ride takes in views of the breath-taking coast and beaches, green rolling hills and deep blue sea. The ride starts at Dartmouth Castle, strategically situated above the River Dart then drops down through the historic naval and tourist town before making its way past several picturesque villages and finishing on the beach at Slapton Sands.

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29.07km
DISTANCE
1:07:09
DURATION
433m
ELEVATION

WEMBURY BEACH AND NEWTON CREEK

Enjoy a crisp and frosty start to the morning on a ride in South Devon. After a quick visit to the beautiful National Trust beach at Wembury we ride the rolling countryside through local villages with views of ancient churches, thatched cottages, farmland, coast and moorland on route. The ride finishes next to the stunning River Yealm in the picturesque village of Newton Ferrers.

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28.43km
DISTANCE
1:07:47
DURATION
416m
ELEVATION

DARTMOOR - AS FLAT AS POSSIBLE

Dartmoor can be an inhospitable place but on a windswept, clear day can be ruggedly beautiful with the colours of the bracken and moorland enhanced. This route attempts to avoid as much climbing as possible but it’s never going to be flat!

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24.37km
DISTANCE
1:01:33
DURATION
406m
ELEVATION

CORNISH FISHING PORTS THREE

This is Poldark country! The ride starts from the historic 18th century port of Charlestown, used extensively for the filming of the BBC series, Poldark. It continues through Pentewan, no longer used as a port due to years of silting up, then descends to the harbourside at Mevagissey.

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10.18km
DISTANCE
0:29:57
DURATION
220m
ELEVATION

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