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Take a guided bike ride around Portsmouth with Gordon, to rely on his decades of experience living and working in the city.
Gordon has cycled for many years, either commuting for work or pleasure rides. He loves finding new routes and discovering hidden gems in the city and its surrounding areas. Now, he's using this knowledge to share parts of the city that tourists often miss.
The bike rides are informed by Gordon's wealth of experience, first from living in the city as a child in the 60's, then later serving here in the Navy on visiting ships and at shore establishments in the 80's, and more recently living and working in Portsmouth.
Guests for the bike ride will first head to Gordon's home to pick up their bikes and get fitted with safety gear before setting off.
This involves safety procedures such as learning how to adjust bike saddle height and getting a correctly fitting helmet, mitts and Hi-Viz tabard. With Gordon's home being close to Goldsmith Avenue, guests can get there easily from Fratton Station, the no 1 bus or by car (weekday parking is currently unrestricted on the road).
With the safety precautions all done, Gordon will talk guests through the route, show them a map to illustrate where the journey will take them, and finally a little historical background as well. With all this done the group sets off at a pace to suit the guests.
Most guests will take on Route One. This is a counter-clockwise cycle tour around Portsea Island, taking in not only the usual tourist haunts but also areas frequented by locals. This aims to show unique aspects of nature, history and commerce, with detours to find those hidden places. The ride will be taken at a relaxed pace, with frequent stops for points of interest, such as the old canal lock, Swan Lake nature reserve, Hilsea Lines ancient defences, Charles Dickens' Birthplace Museum, Guildhall Square, the 'Mucky Duck', the Hard Interchange (to learn about the mudlarks), Spice Island and Southsea Castle, before enjoying an ice cream or drink at the pier. Guests then return to the start point via Eastney.
This route takes around 4 - 5 hours with stops. A shorter version is available taking in only the bottom half of the island (approximately 3 hours) - enquire for details.
Additionally there's Route Two taken less frequently. This sees guests take the ferry (ticket is included in the price) to Hayling Island for a seafront and rural cycle on roads and tracks. There's time to stop for a cuppa/cake at the Garden Centre or Donkey Sanctuary, before returning via the Langstone Harbour cycle track. This route takes around 3 -4 hours.
Route Three is a scenic road and track route to Chichester Market. Please note this contains some inclines and is around 30 miles there and back. The route involves up to 2 hours cycling each way plus time in the city.
£17 per person.