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3CT1602 - Celtic Tour

Wednesday, June 15, 2016 | Laurens Corijn / Michael Kreuzmeir | Europe

Day 8 - Chagford to Lynton

Today we had a nice loop scheduled across Devon and Cornwall, with our lunchstop at the supposed location of King Arthur's castle. These days it's not called Camelot, but Tintagel. There is a "Camelot Castle" hotel and restaurant where we had lunch, our ladies even got a tour by the resident Master Artist of the castle.

The roads through Dartmoor National Park. Always a highlight to ride through these wide open spaces, with majestic views and sheep and even horses in this case, grazing by the road.
The weather wasn't really on our side, so we made sure to take lengthy coffee- and lunch stops. Here's Roberto and Jose enjoying lunch at the Camelot Castle hotel, a very interesting quirky place..
And now we're at the wonderful Heddon's Gate hotel, where Pat and Mark are taking great care of us!

Day 7 - Abergavenny to Chagford

This day was all about the mystical Stonehenge! We only took some backcountry roads to find our way to the parking spot of Stonehenge actually 2 km away from the stone circle. A big and nice tourist center just gives you all the things you need if the weather isn't as perfect as it should be. Shuttle buses took us the long way down to the big rocks. Finally - walking up to the Stonehenge circle is just spectacular! Nobody could imagine the size of the rocks. And how did the people get the horizontal stones on top of the vertical ones 5000 years ago? Just incredible!

We stopped in Lacock for a picture of this tiny but lovely street with all those amazing stone houses. Right around the corner of a Harry Potter filming location.
Finally! Stonehenge! What an experience! It's just amazing when you walk up to it and realize the sheer size of this stone circle.
And this is only half of it. The other half of this cultural and mystic place is still buried in the ground.
Tonight we are staying in the lovely little town of Chagford with a beatiful church right across our hotel.
Of course the dinner was amazing as well. Don't you agree?

Day 6 - Llechryd to Abergavenny

We set off again on our bikes from the lovely hotel in Llechryd, with our destination set to Abergavenny. We had a few stops at Fishguard, Pembroke and Llandovery. Riding through the twisties in Brecon Beacons park was especially fun!

Overlooking the bay in Fishguard
Proper English (well, Welsh actually...) tea and cake in Pembroke.
Dom and Louise just love castles, Dom just can't get enough of them!

Day 5 - Betws-Y-Coed to Llechryd

Today was all about the Snowdonia National Park. Little backcountry roads, lots of cattle grids and gates, no traffic, some fog, beautiful lakes, narrow single tracks and a good set of sweepers in the end.

Again we had pretty small single lane but two way roads but therefore no traffic at all.
No traffic means you can just stop on the raid an take wunderful pictures like this.
The Triumph Tiger 800 and 1200 Explorer are just perfect for the mix of little backcountry roads and long sweepers.
In the afternoon we tried to look at a very scenic lake but unfortunately we nearly missed it because of a thick layer of fog.
We enjoyed really good ice cream right at the coastline of Aberystwyth.
Crossing the bridge to the hotel at Llechryd.

Day 4 - Isle of Man to Betws-Y-Coed

Day 4 had us heading south as soon as we got off the ferry from Man in Heysham. We rode straight into North Wales and started getting our first taste of the great little roads down there. Our target for the day was the hotel in Betws-Y-Coed, which means "Sanctuary in the Woods", a very fitting name. On the way there we entered into the magnificent Snowdonia national park, where the scenery seemed straight from a movie.

The roads here in the UK can be unbelievably small, but we didn't head down this one, luckily!
Caernarfon Castle was an impressive sight for a coffee stop!
Bruce and Dom are studying the map for the day's route.
We ended the day with these fantastic views of Snowdonia!

Day 3 - Isle of Man Tourist Trophy Senior Race 2016

Today is the day! The highlight of the whole Tourist Trophy - the Senior Race! Meaning this is the fastest race of all around the Sneafell Mountain course! Just last weekend Michael Dunlop set a new lap time record with 16 Minutes 58 Seconds being the first one to ever finish a lap in under 17 Minutes! And today when we were watching he just set up a new record in 16 Minutes 53 Seconds and 133,962 miles per hour as the average speed! Just imagine that!

The front row of houses in Douglas right at the promenade. Very pretty and lots of motorcycles are parked all along the street.
We visited the big Grandstand right at the pit stop lane right before the races were about to start.
The first race on the last day the of the whole Tourist Trophy was the sidecar race.
They almost go around the track as the superbikes but there are two people on the bike. Well, most of the time the second rider is on. In the turns he or she is hanging off the side to keep the bike from flipping over. Here we see the winners coming into the finish area.
Then finally the big Senior Race started. We could watch them coming down the start / finish straight in full speed. And that's right in the town center of Douglas.
Most of the guys pulled pretty long wheelies because of their speed and torque coming down the long straight.
Right behind the Grandstands we watched them disappear into a turn in full speed.
Even though the race is about the lap time only there were several overtakings especially on the straight and fast parts of the track.
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Short clip of the side of the road right behind the Grandstand.

Day 2 - Keswick to the Isle of Man

Our second day started with a little sightseeing right outside of Keswick at the Castlerigg Stone Circle. 4500 years old they were standing there on a hill with no one but us visiting. Afterwards we started riding in the Lake District. The area comprising the Lake District was formed during several ice ages. The created a couple of valleys, most of them with lakes inside, surrounded by mountains up to 3.120 ft high. The Lake District National Park is considered to be the most beautiful park in merry old England. After a little ferry ride across the Windermere Lake we had a nice lunch and then made our way to board the ferry to the Isle of Man.

The Castlerigg Stone Circle right outside of Keswick.
Dominic and Daniel didn't trust me to take this picture. So here is the proof.
View from the Hardknott Pass.
Everybody was happy at the top enjoying the good weather and the view.
Yes, this is a two way road with an ascent of up to 30%!
The ferry was already waiting for us to board last. Actually it was just German time management.
After another stretch of roads we arrived to Liverpool boarding the ferry to the Isle of Man.
Finally arriving to the famous island with the most spectacular road races in the world!

Day 1 - Hinckley to Keswick

We really had a great first day, riding from Hinckley to Keswick. Even the (little bit of) rain didn't bother us!

The Tigers are ready for another tour through the UK!
Jacqueline seems pretty happy with her special Tiger with low seat.
We started off with a special guided tour through the Triumph factory in Hinckley. No pictures allowed inside though!
Enjoying our first lunch while riding at a historic pub in Ripley.
Highlight of the day was cruising through the Yorkshire Dales National Park. The rain and fog created such a great atmosphere!
Bruce and Susan admire the scenery from the bike.
And now we are in Keswick, in the lovely Lake District, truly one of the most beautiful places in the UK!
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