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Barnstaple to Heilbronn (Germany)

37monkey37monkey Posts: 141
edited November 2010 in Tour & expedition
Hey all,
I'm going to cycle to my friends house in Germany and I'd like to get some advice on the best way to plan my route. I'll be using a Garmin 705. I'm hoping to get to Dover in 2 days, I'm thinking about stopping overnight with family in Portsmouth - is that a good idea or is there a better route to Dover? Once on the mainland I plan to ride pretty much down the France Belgium border as that's an almost direct route, what's the best way of finding cycle paths and bike friendly roads? Also should I book B&B's beforehand or turn up on the day? I should be able to do the distance in 7 days, I'll be travelling light as I'll post my luggage to my mate house before I leave. It looks like ryanair will be my way back is there anything I should know about them.
Thanks

Posts

  • prb007prb007 Posts: 703
    Sorry to hijack your post, but saw Barnstaple in your title and was drawn to the post......
    reason being - I'm in the middle of planning JOGLE for next May and was planning using Barnstaple for a stopover (leaving from Newport Velodrome that morning, Barnstaple overnight, then St.Agnes the next day)
    Anyhoo........ any recommendations for ten tired and hungry cyclists?
    Hotels/B&B's?
    Pub?
    Food.....pizza/pasta/curry houses - whatever?

    cheers.......in advance

    ps - I'd book hotels, myself, nothing worse than being turned away when you've
    had a long day in the saddle, thinking you've done your bit, then having to ride
    further to get digs!
    If Wales was flattened out, it'd be bigger than England!
    Planet X Ti Sportive for Sportives & tours
    Orange Alpine 160 for Afan,Alps & dodging trees
    Singlespeed Planet X Kaffenback for dodging potholes
    An On-One Inbred for hard-tail shenanigans...
  • Tim FarrTim Farr Posts: 665
    As someone who did virtually the reverse of your Barnstaple to Dover, mine was Dover to South Molton I am drawn to respond. I think this was this was 1963 and the roads were somewhat quieter than they are today. We would always use the main roads - you'd be crazy to do that nowadays. This is before the 'link road' Tiverton to Barnstaple and there was still the railway line Taunton - South Molton - Barnstaple!! Indeed for the last leg we took the train Taunton to South Molton (we'd had enough after a European trip which included Switzerland, Furka, Great and Little St Bernard.

    Certainly plan your route on mainly minor roads.e.g. perhaps for Barnstaple to South Molton take the 'old' road Landkey and Swimbridge to South Molton then Witheridge to Tiverton OR if you want the flattest route take the A377 (quiet for an A road) to Eggesford, then left up the hill to Nomansleigh and Tiverton. I did Eggesford to Tiverton on my LEJOG in 2003.

    I know little of the capabilities of your Garmin. Can it be used as a tool to plan your route? A good road atlas - price always heavily discounted - can be very useful. Just mark your route and tear out. Also MemoryMap produce 1:50000 OS maps which you could download.
    Why two days - make it three and relax. Sorry computer is playing up Good luck





















    W
    T Farr
  • 37monkey37monkey Posts: 141
    I think you're right Tim, having looked at various routes two days is a bit too ambitious, so I'll do three instead. As for planning I've since found Bike Route Toaster and the osm planning seems to avoid main roads, and I've got a bit of time to get used to the garmin.

    Prb007, sorry not to have replied sooner, it's a bit odd being asked about hotels in your home town, as I live in a house I don't use them :lol: but I do know the Inn on the square gets noisy at night as it's in-between two nightclubs, any of the Brend group hotels would be okay (Imperial, Barnstaple Hotel, Royal & Fortiscue or the Park hotel. and as for food I would always recommend the Owl cafe on Maiden street, great food friendly staff - only downside - it's vegan but don't let that put you off as the all day breakfast is great value. hope that helps.

    Edit. Gurkha restaurant in market street is by far the best curry house, and imho opinion the Reform on Pilton street is the best beer (they brew on the premises Barum Brewery).
  • jc4labjc4lab Posts: 1,055
    The route I once took to Germany was a direct one ..Not planned but still enjoyed it was.Hull Zeebruuge ferry for Ostende..Maybe easy by Dover also.-Ostende Brugges Gent Brussels Ardennes Mosel area of Germany,Trier etc which brought me to Strasboug and Black Forest. Bivvybag camping and hostels.en route,,.Belgium is pretty good..Just turned up at hostels in pre internet times but Hostelworld or Hostelbookers websites makes bedfinding and Booking just one day before so easy nowadays...
    jc
  • prb007prb007 Posts: 703
    [quote="

    any of the Brend group hotels would be okay (Imperial, Barnstaple Hotel, Royal & Fortiscue or the Park hotel. and as for food I would always recommend the Owl cafe on Maiden street, great food friendly staff - only downside - it's vegan but don't let that put you off as the all day breakfast is great value. hope that helps.

    Edit. Gurkha restaurant in market street is by far the best curry house, and imho opinion the Reform on Pilton street is the best beer (they brew on the premises Barum Brewery).[/quote]

    Cheers for the info - have e-mailed the Brend hotel group and look forward to the curry and real ale (only one day to go after Barnstaple!)
    If Wales was flattened out, it'd be bigger than England!
    Planet X Ti Sportive for Sportives & tours
    Orange Alpine 160 for Afan,Alps & dodging trees
    Singlespeed Planet X Kaffenback for dodging potholes
    An On-One Inbred for hard-tail shenanigans...
  • mmukmmuk Posts: 398
    I've toured a fair bit through France/Holland/Belgium and Germany and only once turned up in a town where there was no accommodation available - just had to go a bit further!

    It does depend on your budget, of course!

    I've not used a garmin, always taken maps, and worked out the next day's route the night before - over a nice cold beer or two!



    Mike
  • Have you tried http://ridewithgps.com/routes ? Seems to be pretty good for mapping routes and shows gradients :)
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