Christopher Rainbow Bike and Tandem Hire

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4 Abbeys & Other Cycleways


The Four Abbeys Cycle Route covers a total distance of 55 Miles (88Km) within the Scottish Borders. As the name says, the route links four abbeys, each founded about 900 years ago. They stand one each in the towns of Melrose, Kelso, Jedburgh, together with Dryburgh Abbey which is an altogether more rural setting.

The Four Abbeys Cycle Route is a good introduction to the Scottish Borders. It can be part of a holiday or a holiday in itself. It is a circular route which can be picked up at any point, what is more it can be travelled easily in either direction. It is well signposted. At 55 miles it is a challenge to complete in one day, if the Abbeys or local towns are to be included in the trip extra days should be allowed. The Abbeys are worth visiting, as are the towns on the way.

The cycle ride which links the Four Abbeys is by no means the only possible route to follow, however it is well thought out. The countryside is attractive and the farmland is varied in character.

For the cyclist there are hills with which to contend, but the views are rewarding and for every ascent there must be a descent!

The Scottish Borders Guide to the 4 Abbeys Cycle Route is comprehensive, Ordnance Survey maps 73 and 74 cover the route, but  they are not essential as there are clear signposts all the way round.

Cyclist unfamiliar with the area need not restrict themselves to the Four Abbeys, the scope for cycling in the Borders is unlimited. There are plenty of quiet roads for touring and racing cyclists. Way marked routes include the Tweed Cycleway, the Borderloop and Sustrans Coast and Castles Route. Comprehensive published maps and guides are available. (See My Links)

The Off Road rider is spoilt for choice. The area around Peebles and Innerleithen is arguably the best  mountain bike area playground in the United Kingdom. The massive Keilder forest is just over the Border in Northumberland. The Cheviot hills host endless possibilities for bike riders. The Forestry Commission have developed the '7Stanes' mountain bike resource. At each of seven forests across the South of Scotand top quality mountain bike challenge routes have been developed.

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