Day 2 – Faversham to Calais

Today the cycling was very tough, I only just made Dover, and got on the 3:30pm ferry to Calais. Getting off, a coach tour guide asked where I was going, and I said around the world. When the coach passed me, all the passengers were waving frantically!
I couldn’t bare cycling past calais, so stopped at the campsite there. As I was finishing up cooking, the sky went black, and a huge thunderstorm came in. Really loud thunder, and loads of flashes of lightning. Turns out my tent has a slight leak – but it was in the direction of the wind, with torrential rain for 3 hours, so I’m not too worried about it.

Click here to view the map and stats.

Day 1 – London to Faversham

Well, I guess since I finally found an internet cafe I should start blogging then. French keyboards are weird, so ignore any typos!
Today started well enough, I had a lovely leisurely cycle from Walthamstow down to Trafalgar Square, then everyone gave me three cheers and sent me on my way. The ride was enjoyable, if tough, and very tiring, and eventually I was down to 10mph on the flat. I didn’t quite make Canterbury, and stopped at an earlier campsite in Faversham, where I met a family cycle touring around Kent for their holiday.

Today I also had an accident, I came down a hill too fast, and it turns out you can’t corner so fast on a bike with a trailer. Nothing major, the bike was fixed in 15 minutes, and I only had a small graze on my chin and a slightly sprained right wrist!

Click here to view the map and stats.

Plan for England

It’s all well and good dreaming of cycling over the harbour bridge in Sydney, but where will I start and how will I get there?

London, Sunday 27th July 2008, 8am, Trafalgar Square. I chose this date, time and place for a number of reasons. The first is that it’s a Sunday a year in the future. Sunday mornings are good for cycling in big cities because there are fewer cars on the road. The second is that Trafalgar Square, specifically the south east corner, is the point where any road sign in the UK that gives a distance to London is measured from. So from those I can leave on a nice quiet morning from “London”. From there I’ll cycle down Whitehall and go over Westminster Bridge, continuing to Elephant, then New Kent Road followed by Old Kent Road and through New Cross. Then I’ll follow the old Roman road out of London, along Shooters Hill and the length of Watling Street via Dartford, Rochester, Gillingham, Sittingbourne and Faversham, taking side roads where necessary to avoid the new dual carriage-way parts of the old Roman road, reaching Canterbury by the first night.

The next day I’ll either continue along the route of the Roman road to Dover trying to avoid the dual carriageway sections in the process, or take the national cycle route through the countryside near to the old road. From Dover I’ll catch an afternoon ferry to Calais before cycling as far inland into France as possible before the second night.

Plan for France to follow…