Great adventure-the H+I team (Euan, Catherine, John, Chris and Jono) are top notch and completely focused on making sure that we had a tremendous adventure. Arrangements were top notch, the flexibility in the trails and the focus on teaching and helping me through the tougher spots made this one of the best adventure trips that I have gone on. The whisky helped as well.
This was my third holiday with Euan and, as usual, it was amazing. To be specific, it was well organized, flexibly arranged, and great fun. I'll continue to use H+I Adventures and will recommend them to anyone who will listen. Great company, excellent trip, and worth every drop of sweat!
A brilliant holiday! The trips out were amazing with beautiful scenery and challenging routes. Being in a small group was ideal as we all got a chance to get to know each other. I would definately recommend this holiday... for the cycling, the beautiful Cairngorms and the holiday itself which felt personal and very relaxed.
classic Highland landscapes
Mountain biking + whisky in the Cairngorms Scotland
The Cairngorms in Scotland boast everything you could want from an adventure vacation. Rolling, heather-clad hills; ancient glens; secluded lochs; abundant wildlife; great local food and drink; and fantastic mountain biking trails.
This is the UK’s largest National Park and hides a wealth of diverse ecosystems and landscapes, including Britain’s only Arctic environment, the cleanest rivers and lochs, huge native forests, moorland and farmland.
We’ll share all this with you during this week-long mountain biking + whisky adventure in one of the most unspoilt and naturally beautiful areas of the Scottish Highlands.
With on-the-trail skills coaching from our expert local guides, you’ll ride on beautiful forest trails, climb high mountain passes, take on rocky descents, cross rivers, and flow down pristine singletrack. All of this will ensure that you go home a more competent and confident mountain biker.
No visit to Speyside would be complete without a distillery tour and whisky tasting, and we’ll take you to a cooperage to learn about the cask process, followed by a tour of a small independent distillery.
In addition to fine Speyside whiskies, you’ll also enjoy many local craft ales from the Cairngorm and Black Isle Breweries – what more could you ask for?!
During your Cairngorms Adventure you will have your own home-from-home in a traditional Highland guest house or country lodge in Aviemore, the outdoor capital of the Highlands.
Our mountain biking + whisky adventure in the Cairngorms National Park is for intermediate mountain bikers with level 3 fitness.
Tour dates 2016
- 28 May – 4 June 2016
- 9 – 16 July 2016
- 3 – 10 September 2016
If these dates don’t work for you, why not gather some friends together and become a group organiser to open up new dates? Contact us to ask about a private group tour.
Cairngorms Scotland diary, by Kevin Henderson, mountain bike guide and poet
Our guide, and resident poet, Kevin shares his experiences with a super-fun group on a thoroughly successful mountain biking + whisky tasting adventure in the Cairngorms National Park, Scotland.
There is more than one undeniable truth ascribed to mountain biking, but I’d like you to think about this one: as soon as you begin to turn the pedals, you accelerate yourself into a world of surprise. What will the trails bring me this time? What unforgettable moments will I witness today? How will the light play on a lochan: like a mirror reflecting in dazzling detail the world back on itself at the dawn of summer, in the autumn the surface ruffled by a playful breeze …
The Cairngorms Adventure Tour, while “gentler” than other trips (I’ll come back to this), nonetheless lived up to such expectations with private and shared moments of surprise, epiphany, apercu —hard not to, when you’re riding the best singletrack in Highland Speyside and around Loch Ness. I said “gentler” than other trips, the Coast-to-Coast Scotland tour for example, but such an observation is relative: there is still plenty to challenge riders of varied ability on this trip, and all of the clients – most of whom were women – progressed their riding, and their experience of natural trails well beyond where they were at the start of the week.
However this tour is characterised by the inclusion and opportunity to undertake other activities as well. There is a day in open canoes on the Spey, and a day walking in the Rothiemurchus Estate, both with appropriately experienced guides. And underlying this is what I think is particularly special about this adventure: it enables the attentive mind to experience a mountainous Highland landscape at a varied and unique pace depending on the nature of the activity. The world appears different when you are riding a mountain bike, walking, or surprising the world from the middle of a river; there’s time for things up close, for being in the landscape in unexpected ways … The Cairngorm landscape – landscape period – is not just a physical space, it is a cultural one too, and each of us who visit, play in it, care for it, contemplate it … remake it anew each time we do so.
Following the group’s arrival on Saturday, the settling into the accommodation that we would share for the rest of the week and a short, late afternoon ride around Loch Morlich, we enjoyed an excellent dinner in Aviemore at ‘International Starters’.
Sunday morning arrived with a big breakfast and excited anticipation of the first day-long ride, a route that would take us past the Green Lochan to Ryvoan, to Nethy Bridge, Loch Garten (and the Osprey Centre), before riding back into town on the Speyside Way. The next day, after a breakfast of scrambled eggs and smoked salmon, the group went paddling on the River Spey with a local guide, while I, with H&I Adventures’ owner and main guide Euan took the opportunity to explore and check out another potential route in the area.
World-class singletrack took over again in Feshiebridge on Tuesday, and while skills tuition is freely provided on the trails, this ride was followed, after a cup of tea, with a specific session at the accommodation which focused on front and rear wheel lifts, and the bunny hop … real lifelong learning!
On Thursday, on their ‘rest day’, the group said they all wanted to ride! and this for all of them really was the memorable riding moment of the week, partly because of where we were, in the Baden, but equally because by now they were truly dialled into the terrain, their enhanced skill set and their bikes… some tough climbs had the group digging deep, but their reward was flowy descents on the sweetest singletrack the Highlands has to offer: energy didn’t seem much of an issue and we couldn’t get enough of it on this day!
Friday, and the last day of the tour was spent in Inverness and on the banks of Loch Ness. A ride from Torbreck to Dores on the shores of the loch, through a coconut alley of gorse flowers (it is one of the most surprising and uncanny smells to encounter in Scotland) and, after some lunch, a ride back to the van on yet more lovely singletrack. Surprise then, from my perspective, at every turn throughout the week.
There is much that I have not mentioned, it necessarily must remain in memory, fleeting moments, things seen which in isolation would make little sense to anyone else, but what I have perhaps been trying to write about here is more idiosyncratic and personal than just the logistics, the timetable and description of an adventure holiday; it is as if the bloodstream of the narrative —the people (Dorothy, Sam, Sylvie, Claire, Gary), the trails, the conversation, the food and wine and laughter, the light and sharp breeze first thing in the morning, those fragmentary glimpses of deer, the moments of bliss, quietude and physical endurance, the smell of ozone and trees …as the world appears … joins the bloodstream of our life’s story, contributing to our becoming what we will become and will continue to become. Meet Kevin, your local mountain bike guide (and poet!) in Scotland
Itinerary Mountain Biking Cairngorms Scotland
The itinerary for your mountain biking adventure in the Cairngorms Scotland has been designed to enable you to improve your biking skills throughout the course of the week. Your guides will coach you through each new challenge so that you make the most of your Cairngorms experience and, in addition, go home a more technically skilled mountain biker.
Please note: itinerary is flexible and may change according to weather conditions and group riding ability
Your guide will meet you at Inverness train station at 12 noon and we’ll head to H+I Adventures HQ to build and tune bikes, and go through our welcome briefing over a light lunch, coffee and some cake. We’ll start as we mean to go on!
Once everyone is happy with their bikes we’ll make our way south to Grantown-on-Spey for our first ride of your Cairngorms Adventure. This village is home to a huge network of secret local trails to get your legs warmed up and used to the Scottish dirt.
Climbing above the village we pick up an old railway line and then up into the singletrack that twists and turns through the birch and pine forest. We will have a chance to look at some skills to set you up for the week ahead. The trail ends at our favourite local bike shop where you can pick up any supplies you might need before heading into the lively mountain village of Aviemore, our home for the next week.
You’ll be staying in a lovely, welcoming guest house in Aviemore, the adventure capital of the Highlands, close to local restaurants and pubs.
Distance cycled: 10km (app. 2 hours)
Setting off from our accommodation, we head into the Rothiemurchus forest. One of the largest surviving areas of ancient woodland in Europe and covering an area of over 30 square kilometres, the forest is steeped in history and folklore.
Weaving our way through 300-year-old Scots pine and passing the iconic Loch an Eilean, with its ruined castle marooned on an island, our ride starts to head off-the-beaten-track and into ancient and lesser-known singletrack that flows through the forest.
We’ll pop out in the small hamlet of Glenmore for a late lunch in a café famed for red squirrels and apple strudel! Back in the saddle and after a short climb we will descend a great piece of singletrack built for the national cross country championships, since then it has been left to change over time into the natural fast and flowing trail it is today.
Heading up and over the Rocky Road we get a view looking out to the Eastern Cairngorms and, with one more flowing descent, we spin back to Aviemore, looking into the Northern Corries, passing Highland cattle and red deer and making it back in time for some of the finer tastes of this area!
Distance cycled: 35km (app. 5 hours)
One of the most beautiful, dramatic and lesser-travelled areas of the Cairngorms is Glen Feshie. This wide open glen could easily be mistaken for a set from Jurassic Park and this is where we start to get a real taste of wilderness.
Our ride starts with a short transfer to into lush forest, which is home to all sorts of endangered animals from capercaille to pine martin and slowly opens toward the River Feshie.
Skirting along the river on double track and singletrack we ride further into the glen itself and the adventure really starts! Be prepared for wet feet as we cross the river and head up above the old hunting lodges.
We arrive at a gorgeous piece of singletrack flowing through the high forest and into the moorland. Let off the brakes before the final sweeping corners below, and if you can manage to look up from the trail the view across the moors is often littered with herds of wild deer.
Still buzzing from the descent we start to work our way across to the hillside opposite, passing old crofts and abandoned black houses left from the Highland Clearances.
Once again on singletrack we climb a short but punchy trail to the top of the hillside for a short breath catcher. From here is the cherry on top of the icing of today’s ride! Below is a local favourite – super-fast and flowy it’s impossible not to have fun on the well earned last descent.
If there’s still time we will head back to Aviemore via one of the best hidden cake shops!
Distance cycled: 23km (app. 5 hours)
No visit to the Speyside area would be complete without a visit to a distillery and a whisky tasting. Speyside has the largest concentration of distilleries in Scotland, thanks to Cairngorm mountains and the abundance of fresh, clean water.
After a good breakfast we’ll head to Craigellachie cooperage to learn all about the importance of the casks to the final whisky product, where the casks come from, and how they’re put back together to house the liquid gold.
Following that, we’ll make our way to a small independent distillery, where we’ll have the opportunity to see the distilling process, and sample a couple of different whiskies, under the guidance of a whisky expert.
Having spent the morning learning about whisky, we’ll transfer to a fantastic local trail centre at Glenlivet, where we will first have lunch in the café to re-fuel for a tremendous afternoon of riding, which includes the longest descent in the Highlands!
When we’ve tired ourselves out on the Glenlivet trails, we’ll head back to our accommodation in Aviemore and freshen up for another delicious dinner in one of our favourite restaurants.
Distance cycled: 15km – 20km (app. 3 – 4 hours)
After the past few days riding in the shadow of Cairngorm Mountain it’s time to start getting high up on it.
Riding out from Aviemore up along the Alt Mor Burn ( a mountain stream) we slowly climb from dense Caledonia forest up onto the open mountain, a mix of beautiful mountain scape and dramatic weather, this is Britain’s only Arctic climate environment.
If we’re lucky we will pass the wild reindeer herd that lives on Cairngorm. Two bulls and five cows were brought to the Cairngorms by Mikel Utsi in 1952, and the unique sub Arctic climate provided an ideal environment for them so that the herd is now over 150 strong.
Next we squeeze through and over boulders, carrying our bike at times, in a tight mountain pass known as the Pass of the Cat. The pass opens up and eventually joins one of the best trails in the Cairngorms and a firm favourite of the guides, starting a little technical and ending up with a fast flowy finish. This 3km trail on the edge of a mountain ravine will certainly be a memory that stays with you.
This day will also introduce you to some of the techniques essential for big mountain riding.
Distance cycled: 33km (app. 6 hours)
After yesterday’s mini mountain adventure you should be perfectly set up for an epic day in the saddle.
As we head towards Cairngorm, this time to the western side, the ride has a feeling of increasing remoteness and beauty. As we head further into the mountains and ride alongside mountain streams we find ourselves at a remote mountain loch, Loch Avon, where we can stop for a snack.
Continuing along the banks of the loch and passing pristine beaches we will find ourselves at the Shelter Stone, a huge fallen boulder with just enough space to get underneath. This has been a haven for many mountaineers caught in bad weather over the years.
Now we start to climb and, after a short hike-a-bike, we are rewarded with the spectacular views from the Cairngorm plateau, which you could easily mistake for the Arctic Tundra found throughout Scandinavia. Now the hard work is over and we have a thrilling mountain trail all the way back down to the valley floor.
It’s been a long, but rewarding day, and after a hot shower we’ll re-group at our favourite local bar for post-ride drinks and dinner.
Distance cycled: 56km (app. 8 hours)
After the the previous day’s epic ride, today we start making our way north with a visit to another small village, Carrbridge, where the emphasis of the day is pure fun!
The trails around Carrbridge shoot off in all directions and we’ll pick our trails depending on how the group is feeling. Whichever way to go, we’ll find flowy, rooty singletrack, darting between birch and pine trees, with a few technical tricks to keep you on your toes!
It’s the perfect way to wrap up our Cairngorms Adventure before heading back to Inverness and sadly packing bikes away.
We’ll have our final celebratory meal in a restaurant on the banks of the River Ness, and toast an incredible week of mountain biking in the Highlands of Scotland.
Distance cycled: 20km – 30km (app. 3 – 5 hours)
Your guide will transport you back to Inverness train station at around 10am where we will say our farewells after an unforgettable adventure in the Cairngorms of Scotland.
Mountain Biking Vacation Cairngorms Scotland Price
£1,065 / $1,811 USD per person (ex. flights, based on two people sharing a room)
We welcome solo travellers on our adventures and if you are happy to share a room with another solo rider of the same sex you do not need to add the single supplement. If, however, you wish to have a room by yourself, a single supplement of £220 / $374 USD will be payable.
H+I Adventures is bonded by the Association of Bonded Travel Organisers Trust Limited (ABTOT), so you can be sure that when you book with us your money will be safe. Price includes:
- All breakfasts
- Seven nights’ accommodation in a beautiful Highland country house
- The services of a fully qualified and experienced mountain bike guide for the duration of your trip
- Entry to the distillery and cooperage
- All group safety equipment
- Transportation around the Highlands
- Global Rescue medical and emergency evacuation services
- Transport to and from Inverness
- Bike hire – we have a limited number of Yeti 575s to rent on a first-come, first-served basis at a cost of £275/$468 each
- Lunches and evening meals
- Travel and activity insurance
- Personal safety and cycling equipment
- Alcoholic/ non-alcoholic beverages
- Any other items not mentioned as included
- Why not add an H+I Adventures riding shirt (shown below) to your booking?! £45/$76.50 each, available in small, medium and large
Arrival and departure details
Your Cairngorms Adventure mountain bike tour will start and end in Inverness. Your guide and/or driver will meet you in the main concourse at Inverness train station at 12 noon.
He/she will be holding an H+I Adventures sign and should be easy to see since the train station is not particularly large or crowded.
If you are flying to Scotland we recommend that you arrive the day before and book an overnight stay in Inverness, in order to allow for any delays in flights and/or luggage.
On your departure day we will return you to Inverness train station at 10am, at the latest. If you have an earlier connection please let us know and we can discuss it with you.
Travelling to Inverness
Inverness is well connected to the rest of the UK by good rail, air, and coach links. For more information on how to get to Inverness view our handy travel guide.
You must book your bike on to your flight in advance, otherwise you could face a heavy charge at the airport. Here are some handy hints and tips on travelling by air with your bike.
Preparing yourself and your bike for the Cairngorms Adventure tour
Please read the full kit list before you start packing for your Cairngorms Adventure tour, so that you have everything you need!
Our mountain biking holiday in the Cairngorms, Scotland is for intermediate mountain bikers with level 3 fitness, and to find out what this means read the explanation of our skill and fitness levels.
The ideal bike for the Cairngorm trails is a good quality full suspension bike with around 120mm of travel. We can arrange bike hire for you at a cost of £275/$468 per person for the duration of the trip.
To get the most out of your mountain bike holiday in Scotland you should plan some training in advance of your tour, and it is essential that, if you’re bringing your own bike, you ensure that it has been properly serviced before the trip.
Accommodation and food
One of the things that set our tours apart from other mountain bike tours in Scotland is the excellent accommodation we use.
We understand that when you’ve had a big day in the saddle on the Highlands trails, you want a warm welcome, hot shower and a comfortable place to relax and unwind – because that’s exactly what we’re looking for too. This is why we only work with accommodation providers across the Highlands and Islands of Scotland whose standards of service match our own high expectations.
We have researched and selected the best local restaurants, cafes and pubs, so that during your mountain biking adventure in Scotland you’ll enjoy some of the most delicious, home-cooked meals, made from fresh, locally-sourced produce. Meal costs
- The average daily lunch and dinner costs are £25-£35 per person, not including drinks
- Tipping is not compulsory, but if you were to tip, 10% of the cost of your meal would be acceptable
Our mountain bike guides in Scotland
Our mountain bike guides are qualified to the very highest level in the UK, through the Scottish Mountain Bike Leader Award. They are qualified in first-aid and for this type of trip they also hold an expedition leader award, which means that they have the knowledge and experience to lead a group safely in these very remote, wild and unpredictable parts of Scotland.
In addition to formal qualifications, our guides have years of experience in the saddle on the Highland trails and will be able to enhance your holiday with facts and fables on local history, flora and fauna.
The team is made up of local riders who are experts in their fields, superb local guides and genuinely nice people. Their passion for mountain biking and for the Highlands and Islands is truly infectious and they’re completely committed to responsible tourism and making sure that our business is run as sustainably as possible. Meet your mountain bike guides in Scotland…
Health and safety in Scotland
- No vaccinations are required for visiting Scotland
- You can drink the water from the rivers on our tours, following the instructions of your guide
- Purification tablets will be available should you require them
- Your guides are fully trained first aiders
Currency and foreign exchange
- The currency in Scotland is GBP (£), and this is the only currency that will be accepted, without exception
- Where we will be travelling there are few banks, so you will need to have enough cash to see you through three to four days of travelling. Your guide will advise you of how much cash you should have with you
It is not compulsory to tip your guides or drivers in Scotland, but if you feel that you have had a good service or experience, you can tip at your discretion.
Visitors from certain countries require a visa to holiday in the UK. Please check www.ukvisas.gov.uk before booking to see if you will need a visa for your mountain bike holiday in Scotland.
You are required as a condition of booking to be insured against medical and personal accident risks. In this policy you must include cover for mountain biking and we recommend that you take out a policy which covers cancellation and baggage.
We work closely with WorldNomads whose policies are specially designed for mountain bike holidays. You can arrange your insurance cover directly with them and we ask that you send us your policy details.
Please note: if you have arranged your own holiday insurance, you must bring a copy of your policy with you on your mountain bike holiday with us.
A great adventure!
Using a bicycle to explore these new, and beautiful, places with our excellent guide made for the experience of a lifetime. Not only did we get expose to great trail, places, and sights, but we got such a real feel for the area. We left with new friends, improved skills, enhanced knowledge, and memories of an adventure that will last forever. We would strongly recommend this to others! Thank you so much to the H&I team for showing us such a great time!
Cairngorms and Whiskey
Our entire mountain biking adventure was amazing! From the very beginning all the way through the last night in Inverness! Our entire group arrived as good friends who mountain bike together, but all with different abilities and expectations. Our hosts and guides were knowledgeable, caring and fun, showing us all the amazing landscape the Cairgorms has to offer. Our guides were not just guides: they quickly became our coaches, therapists, friends and cheerleaders, giving us all confidence and skills to push through and believe in ourselves and our technical abilities! We will do another trip soon and add additional friends to join us! We have all become family through this great experience!
Great adventure--the H&I team (Euan, Catherine, John, Chris and Jono) are top notch and completely focused on making sure that we had a tremendous adventure. Arrangements were top notch, the flexibility in the trails and the focus on teaching and helping me through the tougher spots made this one of the best adventure trips that I have gone on. The whisky helped as well.
Cairngorms in April
I have alot of road biking experience but relatively little mountain
biking experience, so I was definitely concerned about what trails we
would be doing. We certainly got lucky that the trails were relatively
dry, and our guide took us on trails that were challenging but at my level;
I was actually surprised at the things I was able to do by the end of
Euan did a great job making the trip fun for everyone and assessing
riding levels. He also threw in an extra day of riding which was
Another amazing adventure!
This was my third holiday with Euan and, as usual, it was amazing. To be specific, it was well organized, flexibly arranged, and great fun. Euan knows the area like the back of his hand and could come up with riding, touring, eating and drinking options on the fly to suit the capabilities and interests of the people in the group. He even fixed my bike and pushed me up a hill when I took a wee tumble! Now that's service. I'll continue to use H&I Adventures and will recommend them to anyone who will listen. Great company, excellent trip, and worth every drop of sweat!
A wonderful adventure
This is a long overdue note to say what a wonderful time we had with Euan in the Cairngorms National Park. Not only was the scenery spectacular, but it was such a special way to see the countryside. The planning and support throughout the trip were fantastic and we couldn't reccomend it more highly!
Thank you for an amazing holiday!
A brilliant holiday! The trips out were amazing with beautiful scenery and challenging routes. Being in a small group was ideal as we all got a chance to get to know each other. Also meant that the holiday could be tweaked so it suited everyone. I would definately recommend this holiday... for the cycling, the beautiful Cairngorms and the holiday itself which felt personal and very relaxed. Thank you Euan and Catherine, I had an amazing time... and to Kev who arrived day one when the real work had been sorted but more than made up for it with his cooking!! I hope to get the chance to join you again...
The Cairngorms Adventure was the perfect blend of breath-taking scenery, amazing singletrack, delicious meals, and new friendships. It\'s ideal if you\'re looking for exciting mountain biking, but also want to explore a bit of Scotland too.
Cairngorms June 2012
We wanted a trip which wasn\'t going to be too difficult for one of us, but challenging enough for the other. Euan was great in answering questions about this trip and assuring us this trip would \"fit the bill\". The trails were great, giving us a varied experience through out the week. Along with the great rides, we thoroughly enjoyed the evenings, spending time with the other riders and guides. H&I Adventures is definitely a first class operation!
Frequently asked questions (FAQs) for our mountain biking + whisky adventure in Scotland
Q. How many people will be in the group?
A. We only run small group adventures to ensure that everyone has the best experience possible, and there will generally be between six and eight people in each group. The minimum number of people we require to run our Cairngorms Adventure mountain biking holiday in Scotland is four.
Q. What’s the age range of people who come on this holiday?
A. The Cairngorms Adventure caters for a wide age range; typically between 30- and 60-years-old, but age is simply a state of mind, as they say, and we welcome anyone over the age of 18!
Q. What style of mountain biking vacation is it?
A.The Cairngorms Adventure tour is a guided mountain bike vacation, ideal for intermediate mountain bikers, which includes other activities, such as a day of canoeing, wildlife watching, and a distillery tour. There’s a huge variety of beautiful, natural trails around the Cairngorms National Park, and we can tailor each day’s riding to the group’s needs.
Q. How far will we be mountain biking each day?
A. The distances we cover on each riding day will depend largely on the fitness and enthusiasm of the group, but will usually be between 15km and 30km per day. This can be easily increased or decreased as the group wishes. The terrain consists of double track, natural singletrack, and some minor roads, through forests and over low-level hill passes. Each evening your guide will chat with you about the following day’s mountain biking and give you an idea of the sorts of trails you can look forward to. If there’s anything you feel anxious about, your guide will be happy to discuss it with you.
Q. What if I come across a section of trail that I can’t ride?
A. Your guide will be very happy to give you some bike skills training during your trip to help improve your confidence and your enjoyment of your Cairngorms adventure tour! It’s not a race or a competition, everyone is there to have a great time, take photos, and revel in the spectacular landscapes of the Cairngorms National Park.
Q. Who will be guiding us?
A. Your mountain bike guides are all local, qualified, experienced professionals who have a real passion for their particular specialism and for the fabulous outdoor playground that is the Highlands of Scotland. Your safety is their number one priority, closely followed by your enjoyment of the tour. They will always be on-hand to answer any questions or requests you may have throughout your trip. Meet your guides in Scotland…
Q. What sort of accommodation will we be staying in?
A. On this Cairngorms Adventure tour you will be staying in a traditional country lodge in the Aviemore area, in the heart of the Cairngorms National Park. There are comfortable bedrooms and guest lounges so that the group can relax together in the evening and chat over their day’s adventures.
Q. Which meals are included in the tour?
A. All breakfasts are included in the price of the tour, and we will supply a range of delicious local ingredients for you to make breakfast at your group accommodation. Lunch and dinner are not included in the trip price. We will either shop in the morning for picnic supplies to take with us, or we will stop at a local cafe or pub for lunch. There are a number of restaurants in Aviemore for dinner. This means that everyone can choose exactly what they want for lunch and dinner and only pay for their own choices. You should allow around £25-£35 per day for lunches and dinners.
Q. What type of mountain bike is best for this trip?
A. A good quality full suspension mountain bike with 150mm travel front and rear will be ideal for this mountain bike tour. The terrain you will be riding is rough in places and you will feel more comfortable on a full suspension bike for the duration of the trip. We can arrange bike hire for you for the duration of your trip; please let us know if you would like to rent a bike in Scotland.
Q. What clothes and kit should I bring?
A. The weather in Scotland is changeable at any time of the year, so you must make sure that you have a waterproof jacket that you can ride/canoe in, and you should also bring plenty of layers of breathable clothing to ensure that you are always warm enough and can remove a layer if you get too hot. You should also bring cycling shorts/trousers, gloves, a warm jacket for the evenings, padded undershorts, and comfortable shoes for cycling and for walking. Read the full kit list to find out what you need to pack for your mountain biking + whisky adventure in Scotland.
Booking your mountain biking holiday in Scotland with us couldn’t be simpler:
- Click the ‘Book now’ button, then choose the currency in which you wish to pay
- Select your preferred dates
- Follow the simple steps to complete your online booking and pay a 25% non-refundable deposit
- The final balance for your mountain biking adventure is due 60 days in advance of the tour start date
Terms and conditions of booking a mountain bike holiday with H+I Adventures
Please take the time to read and understand the conditions of booking available in the link below prior to booking your mountain bike vacation with H+I Adventures. We strongly recommend that you also read all the details set out in the web page relating to your holiday prior to booking to ensure that you understand the itinerary and style of the mountain biking holiday you are undertaking. Read our terms and conditions of booking.
The Association of Bonded Travel Organisers Trust Limited (ABTOT) provides financial protection under the Package Travel, Package Holidays and Package Tours Regulations 1992 for H&I Adventures Ltd, and in the event of their insolvency, protection is provided for the following: 1. non-flight packages commencing in and returning to the UK; 2. non-flight packages commencing and returning to a country other than the UK; and 3. flight inclusive packages that commence outside of the UK, which are sold to customers outside of the UK. 1, 2 and 3 provides for a refund in the event you have not yet travelled. 1 and 3 provide for repatriation. Please note that bookings made outside the UK are only protected by ABTOT when purchased directly with H&I Adventures Ltd.
H+I Adventures has partnered with Global Rescue, who offer the finest medical advisory, and medical and security evacuation services, to protect all of our riders travelling around the world with us. Global Rescue delivers world-class emergency services, from detailed reports on more than 200 countries to help travellers prepare, to medical evacuations and security extractions when needed most. Global Rescue intelligence ensures that our guides around the world are in a position to anticipate and mitigate against any potential issues, and if the worst does happen, Global Rescue medical and evacuation services will get you to safety and the best medical provision available, as quickly as possible. Global Rescue benefits for our travellers include:
- Medical evacuations to nearest appropriate hospital, from anywhere in the world to the nearest appropriate hospital (excludes cost of any resulting medical treatment, which must be covered by your own insurance)
- Security extractions – If you experience threats to your safety that could result in grievous bodily harm or there is a government order to evacuate, Global Rescue will extract you and bring you to the nearest safe area
- Field rescue – Global Rescue will rescue you from the point of illness or injury, even if you’re far from civilization. Their personnel and partners deploy and bring you to safety
- Medical advisory services – Our guides around the world have 24/7 access to critical medical advice from the Global Rescue team of physicians, paramedics and Johns Hopkins Medicine, ranked #1 in the U.S. 22 times since 1990
- Destination reports – Our worldwide team has access to constantly-updated intelligence on more than 200 countries with critical information on medical, security and other important events that may impact upon your travel with us
When you book your mountain biking adventure with H+I Adventures, all of these services are included as standard. Please also be aware of the limitations and exclusions of our Global Rescue policy.
You are required as a condition of booking to be insured against medical and personal accident risks. In this policy you must include cover for mountain biking and we recommend that you take out a policy which covers cancellation and baggage. Our partnership with Global Rescue will cover costs associated with medical evacuation and field rescue to the nearest appropriate hospital, and security extraction to a safe area, so you do not need to include this in your own travel insurance policy. We work closely with WorldNomads.com whose policies are specially designed for mountain bike tours. You can arrange your insurance cover directly with them by visiting worldnomads.com and then we ask that you send us your policy details. Please note: WorldNomads don’t cover for domestic travel, so for example, if you live in the UK and have booked on a holiday in Scotland, or you live in Canada and have booked our Yukon adventure, you cannot arrange an insurance policy with them. You must bring a copy of your insurance policy with you on your holiday with us.
The following code of conduct is a guide to how we expect our customers to behave on our mountain biking holidays around the world. By observing them you will have a more enjoyable vacation and will gain the respect of the local people. We ask you to travel respectfully and pay attention to local rules and values. Why do we have these guidelines? During our mountain biking vacations we will be travelling through communities, homes and sensitive areas, and as a responsible tour operator we want our type of tourism to be sustainable and of reciprocal benefit to you and all of these communities. Over the years our guides and customers have made friends whilst travelling in these remote areas, and we don’t want any of these relationships to be compromised. Respecting cultural differences In the areas that we visit during our mountain bike holidays things may be done differently from where you live and work, which is why we love them, and why you are there. So when dealing with local people please accept their differences and respect their way of life. A traveller who is happy and converses with locals will have a much better experience and will leave a better impression than one who seeks fault. Etiquette There are a few general behaviour rules that apply throughout the world:
- Shouting at a member of waiting staff is frowned upon, a gentle hand signal is all that is required
- No smoking in any enclosed public places
- It is impolite to enter a store or restaurant and not say hello in the local language
- In most countries it is inappropriate to express anger in a raised voice. Becoming angry is embarrassing to the local people with whom you are dealing – they will not be embarrassed for themselves, but for you making a fool of yourself
Environmental responsibility The world is beginning to realise the impact that our waste management is having on our environment. We have identified the recycling points situated along the routes that we take during our mountain bike holidays, so we ask you to keep any rubbish that you may have, so we can dispose of it into the correct bins when we return to civilisation. There are bins for plastic bottles, paper, glass, aluminium cans and general rubbish. When our guides are on the hill they will be picking up any litter that they come across, but more importantly, they will encourage you to do the same. Packed lunches: some of the day rides during our adventures take place in very remote areas, where there are no food stops or support vehicle stops, so we need to carry our lunches with us. We ask the providers of these lunches not to use layers of packaging and when they need to, they use recycled paper bags or reusable containers. Drinking water: before our holidays commence we supply you with a kit list, asking you to bring your own water carrying device, like a bladder or bottle that you can fill up at a designated place each day. We actively discourage the use of throw-away bottles. In some countries water can be taken from the taps and rivers that we will pass on our daily mountain bike rides, and the guides will be on hand to advise you and dispense purification tablets should they be needed. Food and accommodation Food is an integral part of any country’s identity. During our mountain biking holidays we will take you to a selection of hand-picked local restaurants and cafés that offer traditional dishes, created from locally-sourced produce. In using a selection of one-man-band cafés to top quality expensive seafood restaurants, we believe that we are distributing the tourism wealth fairly around the areas we visit. In order for you to get the full ‘experience’ we use small family-run guesthouses, or bed and breakfasts that employ local workers, as far as is possible. If we have to use larger hotels, we opt for non-chain, locally-owned establishments. Being a responsible traveller doesn’t finish at the end of your holiday… We hope that during your travels with us through some of the wildest and remotest parts of the world you will have learned something from our guides and your experience, that you can take back home with you to your daily life.