The Road to APEX Picture 1
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Best Time of Year: April - October
The Road to APEX
The Road to APEX, a ride from Royal Tunbridge Wells to Amsterdam is a real challenge for regular active riders; you'll be clocking up 450km and riding in no less than four different countries - all in only four days! Think coastal routes, French patisseries, Belgian chocolates and cobbled streets in Bruges, canals and cycle routes galore in Holland and that city that makes it all so worthwhile - Amsterdam.
For this ride, participants will be fundraising for The Lighthouse Club charity. For more information, visit http://www.lighthouseclub.org/
From our English Prologue riding through the Garden of England, AKA Kent, we’ll catch the Dover to Calais Ferry and cross onto the continent for the rest of our four day ride to Amsterdam. Wave the white cliffs goodbye and we’ll roll into Calais off the ferry for our well-earned first night of rest.
In our second day we’ll take in France and Belgium – phew! It'll be a big day at 120km, still with plenty of time to explore the tree-lined canalside cycle routes of Belgium and Holland with a night in the delightful city of Bruges.
The final leg of this trip crosses to the North of Holland, with an overnight stay in Brielle, before following the river Amstel and delivering us into central Amsterdam ready to celebrate this massive achievement – it’s really not a challenge to be sniffed at!
Day 1 - The English Prologue, 100km. Meet near Royal Tunbridge Wells for intial briefing at 0830, bike checks, and collection of baggage for transfer by support vehicle. Leaving at 0930, we will take in our English Prologue across the tranquil Kent countryside, winding through small villages and spanning open farmland. Heading for Folkestone, we pick up the coastline, where you'll see those famous white cliffs ahead. It's a short climb up onto the top of the cliffs followed by a descent into Dover, passing the impressive Dover Castle before hopping on the first ferry of our trip.
Wave goodbye to those white cliffs as we sail into the Channel. After the short crossing, we'll remount just to roll into Calais for our first night's stay.
Day 2 - France and Belguim, 120km. It's a bright start from Calais, making our way up this famous piece of coastline. After only 55km in France, we cross the border into Belgium and heading inland passing through picturesque Belgian towns and villages. We’ll then aim for the pretty capital of the Flanders region, Bruges.
Day 3 - Holland's coastal landscape, 128km
Heading out of the medieval city and cobbled streets of Bruges, we take a beautiful tree-lined cycle route alongside the canal to head to the border of Holland. 22km on to Breskens, we then take a short ferry and from here it's pan flat riding across the famous coastal plains of the Zeeland province (translated as Sea-land). In Brielle we get the chance to rest up for the night and enjoy an authentic Belgian beer or two!
Day 4 – The Grand Finale, 100km. For our final day in Holland, we pass by Rotterdam and The Hague, heading North to join the river Amstel which guides us all the way into our final destination. We’ll reach the spectacular Rijksmuseum for that victory shot before celebrating our achievements in this fantastic city. Participants have their own rooms booked in Amsterdam for APEX (not by Adventure Cafe).
Day 5 - Return to UK or APEX Show.
We'll be using simple but clean hotels en-route sharing twin rooms - good enough to give you somewhere to get clean, and get a good nights sleep with planned eating stops along the way. Nothing palatial - but not too bad either! Single supplements are available - please inform us at the time of booking if you would like a single room at an additional cost of £100.
What is a Level 3.0 Cycling Challenge Like?
These rides are typically multi day rides, with medium distances and undulating terrain. Level 3 rides suit riders who ride regularly, and are looking for something challenging but manageable. In the case of single day events, you can expect up to 8 hours of cycling with breaks. In the case of a multi day ride, you can expect a slightly lower daily duration - but of course - the effort is sustained over a longer period. You should be a competent rider, with regular training outings - both at the weekend and ideally with another session during the week. A 10 week training programme is available for our 3 star rides.
How Fit Do I need to be to join a Level 3.0 ‘Bike Ride’?
You need to have good endurance for these events. You must be used to doing long bike rides in the countryside of 5 hours + and distances of between 45 - 55 miles . You should be doing regular exercise - with some serious cycle training (at least twice per week in the run up to the event). Your typical comfortable cycling speed will be around 21-23 km/hr on flat and gently undulating terrain, and you should be able to cycle at higher speed for up to 1 hour or 25 km (on a road bike). You may also blend in other types of exercise - but for longer periods of time (ie sessions in excess of 1.5 hrs.) - however cycling is the best preparation (obviously!)
Please note, it is extremely important for this physical challenge that you are in good health. If you have any pre-existing medical conditions, please consider carefully whether you should be joining the challenge. Please ensure you fill in the booking form accurately and honestly, this is important. In the case of serious conditions (epilepsy, diabetes, heart conditions, recent illness or operations), please discuss the challenge with your GP. Please also ensure you notify us of any allergies or similar.
It requires stamina and good aerobic fitness - but good willpower will also come in handy! Failure to disclose medical conditions is a serious omission - that could have serious repercussions on any of our challenges.
Visas / Redtape
When travelling abroad you may require a Visa. Please check the Travcour website (www.travcour.com) for up to date Visa information. Here they can advise you on the best action to take. If you require further information please don't hesitate to contact the Café.
Included In Trip
Experienced Cycle Leader.
Full Vehicle Support and Driver/Mechanic.
Qualified First Aider.
Ferry Crossing to Calais.
Bed and Breakfast accommodation en route.
Full buffet breakfasts every day.
Excluded From Trip
Your evening meals and lunches. Depending on group size we will either be stopping in local cafes or providing picnic style lunches. With a larger group we provide picnic Lunches for £5 per person per day.
Pre Event accommodation on the night before our departure from the UK, travel to and from start and finish.
Breskens Ferry (5 euro approx) and Rozenburg Ferry (couple of euros).
Road Bike / Hybrid Bike (with puncture resistant tyres) - please call us for guidance on type of bike on a trip by trip basis
2 X Water Bottles (bladder system/cycle water bottles)
Cycling Gloves, Bike Lock, Neck Scarf, Inner Tubes*, Multi-Tool (with allen keys)*
Day Bag for support vehicle, Small Holdall (for overnight gear)
Bike Lights (front and rear, head torch can be worn)
Saddle Bag (recommended - can be used to carry asterisk* items)
Puncture Repair Kit*, Spare parts for your bike (specialist parts and spokes), Pump (suitable for your valve type)
Personal Medikit Suncream, Plasters, Vaseline, Painkillers, Sunbloc, Insect Repellant
Warm Clothing Medium Weight Softshell, Long sleeve Jersey / insulating layer Lightweight Gloves.
Cycle / Overnight Clothing
Lycra Cycling Shorts, Cotton Shorts, Long Cycling Trousers (Tights/Tracksuit Bottoms)
Cotton T-Shirts for evening
Short Sleeve Cycling T-Shirts (wicking type material) or Cycle Top with rear pockets
Cycling Shoes (approach shoes suitable), Sandals / Spare Shoes for after ride
Casual Evening Wear
1 Outer Fully Waterproof Jacket (gore-tex, e-vent) - comfortable to cycle in
Travel Documents, EHIC (European Health Insurance Card) Credit Cards, Cash, Local Currency, Mobile Phone, Sunglasses
Snacks for Cycling Days (dried fruits, nuts, flapjacks, cereal bars etc)
Travel insurance (not included), Passport
Make sure you do not ‘over pack’ - bring only what is essential for the trip
A final kit list will be provided in your ‘Final Joining Instructions’ pre-departure
You must stay in contact with your leader at each stage of the ride. Briefings will be made each morning. You must always wear your helmet. Your leader is First Aid Qualified - and will carry a full expedition first aid kit. There will also be a support vehicle available in case of emergency - but this is only useful if you are in contact with the vehicle / leader. You should make sure you have programmed your leader's phone number in your own phone. If you are stuck at the roadside - please make yourself safe. Also it is essential that you check your bicycle is in good working order before joining this event, please ensure it has been recently serviced.
Weather conditions very similar to the South East of England - dependent upon time of year could be cold, hot or rainy. Prepare for all conditions. The support vehicle will be close at all times and will be able to carry your waterproofs / extra layers should the weather be changeable on the day.
Notes on Cycling Events
This is our standard range of Cycling Challenges in the UK, Europe and further afield. However, we offer completely tailormade itineraries to your specification. Call us to discuss!
Adventure Cafe Booking Terms and Conditions
By booking an event with Adventure Cafe, you agree to these standard terms of booking. Please ensure that you read the appropriate document for your type of event carefully.
Adventure Cafe Terms & Conditions
- For all types of event