The joy of cycling is that it can take you anywhere. Your back yard, holidays and races… the world is your oyster. With that in mind I thought it would be a good idea to share with you five of my favorite cycling spots. I’ve thrown in a few Strava files for good measure, if you’re ever in the area and need an idea of where to go. The Cotswolds, UK: Often our favourite routes are the ones we know best. Having grown up around this area I know a route for just about anything; hills, flat TT, scenic tour… and my favorite of course, the coffee and cake route. You can’t go far wrong if you aim for the block of routes around the North Cotswolds, between Oxford and Broadway. There are some great back roads that meander around the very pretty villages of Moreton-in-the-March, Chipping Campden and Stow-on-the-Wold. Beware though, there are some pretty savage hills, especially around Broadway including the locally infamous Snowshill. Resurfaced a couple of years ago before the Tour of Britain came through, it’s a great little climb. Just don’t expect to win any KOM’s there anymore. Route: This route pulls in Snowshill, and loops through Broadway Hill. Check out the Leaf & Bean in Broadway for that all important cake stop… Zurich, Switzerland: Now my current place of residence, Zurich is a great place to get up and into the mountains proper. Immaculate road surfaces, good cycle paths and a lake to jump in after (summer only of course), Zurich has it all. Simple routes such as a loop around the lake, offer endless options for coffee stops with amazing vistas, just don’t forget to bring your wallet (nothing is cheap!). If you want to head a little further out, aim South of Lake Zurich up and over the Canton of Schwyz, towards Lake Zug. Some great climbs, and quiet roads that will rewards your hard efforts. Just make sure you recover well (SiS REGO is great for this), so you can wake up and do it all again the next day! Route: A nice route as mentioned above, with some tasty climbs and easy recovery backroads. The simpler lake route, is an easy one to follow. Mallorca: Nowadays a default for many cyclists and triathletes, looking to combine some great cycling along with some family time in the sun. Generally speaking, I always avoid the Southern part of the island, favouring the more chilled vibe towards the North. Alcudia and Port de Pollenca are great places to base yourself, and then look to head West towards the NW coast. There are plenty of bike shops around that area, meaning you don’t have lug your bike over there if you don’t want to. Advise an early start though to avoid the crowds and midday sun, and make sure you take some SiS Hydro tabs with you. Route: This is the ironman 70.3 bike route. A nice climb followed by a long, fun and technical descent. The South Downs & The New Forest, UK: Essentially two massive National Parks, this part of the UK has some great cycling routes to offer. If it’s hills you are after, you can base yourself from Winchester and head East, or plonk yourself in the thick of it in Petersfield where you can basically ride off the train and let the leg thrashing begin. The New Forest offers some slightly flatter terrain, albeit no less challenging. Coastal winds can make for an interesting ride so make sure you go mentally prepared. A word to the wise – make sure you take some snacks (such as the SiS GO bars) spares with you, the roads can offer up some challenging terrain and that last thing you want to be doing is hitching a ride home. Route: This route of the New Forest offers pretty flat going, with some great scenery. The Canary Islands: A long-standing mecca for training camps and cycling holidays, islands like Tenerife and Lanzarote can offer up an opportunity for some high-quality winter miles away from the wind and rain. I’ve been on self-styled ‘training camps’ for three of four days, and can vouch for them 100%. The accessibility from the UK and other European hubs is great, and there is an endless list of companies that can take all the heavy lifting and help you work on your cyclist tan lines whilst improving on your fitness. Route: From a short while back, this route around Southern Tenerife takes in the famous El Teide National Park. Written By Jon Baguley Jon Baguley is an SiS Ambassador, and WAA Ultra athlete who has competed in a broad range of events from multi day desert ultra-marathons to GBR Age Group 70.3 Championships. You can follow more of his journey on Instagram here.