Coast And Castles Day 1

The Coast and Castles South route is a great introduction to long-distance cycling. It’s one of the UK’s easier, but no less epic, long-distance routes. Along the way, you’ll pass several Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty, the Holy Island of Lindisfarne, and Bamburgh Castle.

Sustrans

Set off early this morning with fresh legs and plenty of miles to tick off, the sun had yet to make an appearance as I crossed over the Wearmouth Bridge.

Wearmouth Bridge at blue hour.

The trails were lovely and peaceful this time in the morning time seemed to fly as I cruised along Seaburn and then Souter Lighthouse.

Souter Lighthouse

Arrived at the Shields ferry crossing with no issues and it wasn’t long to wait at the jetty.

Negotiated the ferry (only passenger) with no problems… then a quick photo stop at Tynemouth Priory before beginning the route officially.

Tynemouth Castle And Priory

Decided to take the road instead of negotiating walkers on the cycle paths through Tynemouth & Whitley Bay and before long arrived at my next Point of Interest… St Mary’s Lighthouse.

Carried onwards and upwards to my next milestone… Blyth, didn’t really hang around seemed like a busy industrial place, but had some nice areas.

With my mind set on a coffee stop in Cresswell I got my head down and plodded on, the cycle track is really good between Ashington & Lynemouth not much to see, but did pass a landmark of sorts.

After Lymemouth the route hits the roads again (not busy, but some traffic to contend with) finally got to Cresswell quick photo of the Pele Tower then coffee.

(Pele towers were built between 1350 and 1600 and were basically miniature castles built as a defensible retreat against attacks from the Border Reivers, raiders and robbers from either side of the Scottish border.)

Wikipedia

After a coffee & coconut slice at the Drift Cafe managed to give the gadgets a quick charge then set off again along the coast on nice quiet trails passing Amble, Warkworth & Almouth skirted past Craster.

Along the River Coquet with Warkworth Castle in the distance.

From here the route mostly stuck to quiet roads with the occasional bridleway tracks, but the weather and scenery were ideal.

Started to feel it a bit at this point the average speed had dropped and my bum was telling me enough was enough finally I caught a glimpse of Bamburgh Castle in the distance.

(Bamburgh Castle has stood guard above the spectacular Northumberland coastline for over 1,400 years. Spanning nine acres of land on its rocky plateau, Bamburgh Castle is one of the largest inhabited castles in the country.)

Wikipedia

Decided to stop at Bamburgh for a drink and a scotch egg, got talking to a friendly guy about biking and long distance tours told me he was interested in the Sandstone Way so we talked a little bit about that until his wife dragged him away 😂

The final hurdle into Bedford was slow going… someone decided to add a few hills into the mix right at the end of the day 🙄 but finally found the B&B and got myself checked-in.

The Farmhouse Guest House in Bedford

Got the bike stored in the shed and then settled down for the evening with a long hot shower and coffee. Phoned home then took a dodge out for a cheeky couple of pints at the Black Swan then fish ‘n’ chips before heading to bed…

End of day 1.

For details check out the ride on komoot.

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