About Our Holidays
Byways Breaks cycling and walking holidays are chosen to explore the best scenery and nicest places. You go at your own pace, take detours and stop when and where you want. There are plenty of places for 'refreshment' and a comfortable place to stay each night. Detailed maps are provided with routes highlighting things to see and do along the way. We move your luggage each day so you travel light, and we are always just a phone call away if you need our help.
Our cycling and walking holidays start on any day. Routes are graded (gentle, moderate or strenuous) and flexible so there's something to suit all ages and abilities. Choose from touring breaks where you stay somewhere different most nights, or one centre breaks, for those who may not want to cycle or walk every day.
UK Cycling Holidays - Cycling holidays are one centre or touring breaks with routes which we have carefully planned.
UK Walking Holidays - Our walking holidays are either one centre breaks or they follow a trail like Offas Dyke path, Pembrokeshire Coast Path, Llangollen Canal, We offer these either as a full walking holiday package or a walkers accommodation booking and luggage service - where we help you plan your route, book accommodation and move your luggage.
At the end of the day welcoming accommodation, good food and a comfortable bed are essential. Over the years we have found many special places to stay. Whether you are looking for a quiet farmhouse, country pub or hotel with good food, or the luxury of a country house hotel we have found the best places to stay along our routes. We inspect all accommodation we use regularly, and insist on high standards. We also pay a great deal of attention to customer feedback which helps us ensure that accommodation standards continue to be high.
All holidays include bed and breakfast and some walking holidays also a packed lunch. Evening meals are not generally included as we find people prefer to make their own arrangements. Most accommodation is in towns or villages where there is a choice of places to eat in the evening and we provide advice and tips about the best options in the route notes. Farmhouse B & Bs can be a distance from a village but all accommodation (except for some trail walking holidays, where evening meals are provided) is close to at least a good pub and somewhere to eat in the evening.
Our accommodation options are flexible. If you would like to stay in a selection, sampling the best, (perhaps a night in a quiet, quality farmhouse, another in a country house hotel) give us a call and we can suggest the best options for you on the holiday you select.
Cycling holidays - Cycle routes follow quiet lanes, bridleways and towpaths. They are chosen for you to see the best scenery, take in the attractions and best teashops and pubs. Each group receives a holiday information pack with the cycle route marked on an Ordnance Survey Landranger map, written directions and plenty of background information about the area, places of interest, pubs, teashops and shops. If you don't want to stick to our routes, you have enough information to discover your own detours!
Cycling routes cover different distances and terrain. They are flexible and there is something for everyone regardless of age and fitness. Generally routes cover 15-25 miles a day through gentle countryside and can be managed by most people, though we do have longer more demanding routes. We grade routes from gentle, moderate to strenuous. In gentle countryside, 20 miles will probably take someone who doesn't cycle regularly 2 -3 hours, so there's plenty of time for a leisurely lunch and exploration.
Walking holidays - Walking routes are either along well marked, signed trails like Offa's Dyke and the Shropshire Way or follow towpaths, footpaths and bridleways. Each group receives a holiday information pack with the route marked on an Ordnance Survey Landranger or Explorer map, written directions and information about places of interest on the route and nearby pubs, teashops and shops. For people using the Walkers Accommodation Booking and Luggage Service directions are provided to each nights’ accommodation but, maps and guide books for the trail are not included. We do sell these separately - see Books and Maps.
Fitness - You do not need to be super-fit to enjoy one of our holidays, they are pleasurable, not an endurance test! You have all day, and if you do not regularly cycle or walk one of the gentle options is easily manageable for most people. Routes are graded (gentle, moderate or strenuous) and flexible so there's something to suit all ages and abilities. If you do not cycle or walk regularly it is a good idea to do some preparation before you come on the holiday
We have a range of good quality hybrid bikes which are equally at home on bridleways, towpaths and country lanes. A safety helmet, lock, handle bar bag and lights (in Autumn) are provided with each bike. All our bikes have 'puncture resistant' tyres, with a 'slime' sealant in the inner tube which seals small holes. There is a tool kit with a pump and inner tubes for each party. We have children's trailer bikes and buggies, and can arrange hire of tandems and cycles for disabled people.
You're welcome to bring your own bike if you prefer. We deduct £8 a day on a short break and £10 on a longer holiday. Please make sure it is roadworthy and don't forget to bring spare inner tubes with you. Should you break down we will do all we can to help, but we cannot be called out to repair your bike or be held responsible for any breakdown.
Cycling or walking is an ideal family holiday provided the right distances are chosen for the younger ones in the party. Many routes are manageable by older children and gentle cycling distances of 10 – 15 miles are suitable for younger children. One centre breaks are good for families – they are flexible and you don’t have to cycle or walk every day.
We have a range of children's bikes but it's often a good idea to bring their own as they tend to be more comfortable using their own bike. We have reduced price for children on all breaks. Please ask us for advice on which cycling or walking holiday might suit your family best.
On cycling and walking holidays (except the walkers accommodation booking service) we meet you when you arrive, to answer any questions you may have about the routes and arrangements. On cycling holidays, bikes are delivered to your first nights accommodation as you arrive and we will adjust your bike to make sure you are comfortable.
Each day your luggage is transferred to your next destination - you only take what you need for the day. If you buy anything, call and we'll move it with your bags! If you break down or need help we're only a phone call away. You will have a mobile number to contact us on throughout the day.
While we offer a wide range of cycling and walking holidays many people do not find exactly what they are looking for. We arrange many individually tailored holidays and can cater for larger groups at several of the one centre bases wherer we can offer very competitive dinner, bed and breakfast breaks.
Cheshire, Shropshire and the Welsh borders has good road and rail links. Most holidays are accessible easily by train and there are stations in Chester, Shrewsbury and Whitchurch as well as other local stations. London, Leeds and Sheffield are only 2 hours from Chester by train. If booking in advance there are many cheap ticket offers. See the Trainline for booking information.
Manchester airport is only 45 minutes from Chester and Liverpool is less than 40 minutes. Airport transfers can be arranged.
On walking and cycling holidays come by car and we will arrange parking for you; come by train and we will collect you from the nearest local station. Detailed instructions on how to get to the start of your holiday will be sent to you in your holiday information pack.
For walkers using the Accommodation Booking and Luggage service, there are easily accessible stations, on most of the trail walks. We can help with car parking arrangements and taxis to collect you from stations - please e mail or give us a call.
Prices for holidays are based on 2 people sharing. Most hotels, farms etc charge extra for singles and in these cases we do have to charge a supplement. We try to keep this as low as possible.
- Children sharing rooms with adults: Under 2s - free; under 4s- 80% reduction (no bikes included); under 12 - 50% reduction; 12 and over - 25 % reduction
- Groups of 4 or more adults - 10% discount
- Bring your own bike - reduction of £8 a day on short breaks and £10 on longer breaks.
The holiday price includes
- Overnight accommodation with full breakfast (except self-catering holidays)
- Bike and equipment hire on cycling holidays (except children under 4)
- Detailed routes and Ordnance Survey maps
- Transfer of your luggage each day
- Emergency back-up service
- Transfer to and from local station