How we did it

Cyclist - - United States -

TRAVEL

We flew with Amer­i­can Air­lines from Heathrow to Tuc­son via Los An­ge­les, which cost around £1,100. As­sess­ing prices now, it could have been nearly half that had we booked fur­ther in ad­vance. What was set in stone was Amer­i­can Air­lines’ $150 e/w charge for a bi­cy­cle, al­though if your flights are ful­filled by Bri­tish Air­ways (as our out­ward jour­ney was) a bike bag is in­cluded in your lug­gage al­lowance.

AC­COM­MO­DA­TION

We stayed in two quite mar­vel­lous ho­tels. If grand lux­ury is your thing, the JW Mar­riott Starr Pass Re­sort and Spa (jw­mar­riottstar­rpass.com) on the edge of the Saguaro Na­tional Park is hard to beat, with spec­tac­u­lar views, a golf course and a steady stream of tal­ented mu­si­cians at var­i­ous cru­cial drink­ing hours of the day. But if laid­back chill­ing is more your vibe, the Loews Ven­tana Canyon Re­sort (loewsven­tanacanyon.com) is a classy ex­am­ple, with spa­cious rooms and a quite ex­cep­tional restau­rant. Rooms from £160 and £120 re­spec­tively.

THANKS

The warm­est thanks to Mary Rittmann, di­rec­tor of travel at the Visit Tuc­son tourist board, who ex­pertly planned ev­ery de­tail of our trip, right down to where we had our cof­fees (try the su­perb Exo Roast Co, ex­o­cof­fee.com). Huge thanks also to Mary’s col­league, Dan Car­ra­her, Ben Leit­ner from Sky Is­land Cy­cles (sky­is­land­cy­cles. com), who took time off from his cy­cle-tour busi­ness to drive our pho­tog­ra­pher around, and Miguel Folch, a top rider, top guide and all-round top bloke.

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