Discover Why Cyclists Can’t Stop Talking About Cycle Retreats


Written by Brooke Stirling

Social media executive

If you love cycling, it is very possible you’ve heard about Cycle Retreats, the company-turned-community taking the cycling world by storm. If you haven’t? You’re missing out on some seriously epic cycling routes used by the pros, plenty of fun and life-long friendships.

Since Cycle Retreats first came on our radar as one of the best holiday experiences for cycling lovers, we’ve come to truly understand why. Partners in crime Mark and Zoe Lancaster put their heart and soul into offering the best experiences for their guests, being avid lovers of cycling and having a natural understanding for what their like-minded guests are looking for in a cycling holiday.

Each guest is made to feel special at this luxury all-inclusive cycle retreat nestled in the stunning Costa Blanca coastline of Spain, with a package tailored to the individual’s wants and needs. Looking to be challenged both physically and mentally? Done. Prefer to take it easy and focus on more relaxed, scenic routes? Easy!

But this family-run “business” offers much more that cycling. To find out more, we sat down with Mark Lancaster who founded Cycle Retreats together with wife Zoe Lancaster.

Who is Cycle Retreats? 

Cycle Retreats has been a pipe dream for many years for me and my wife Zoe and we planned this for several years.

Between us, we run the retreat and this season we have made 2 more additions to the Cycle Retreat Family, Andy and Tracey who assist us making your stay with us just perfect. Andy is our inhouse baker providing beautiful homemade deserts and cakes which await you after a days riding.

How did the idea of Cycle Retreats come about?

In our down time both Zoe and I (particularly Zoe who is much more accomplished than I am) love to Snow board and we love to go on very nice luxury Ski chalet type holidays where everything is taken care of and you have a guide to take you around the mountain… we love it! In the summer, we used to go on Cycling holidays which were usually training camp style holidays, or we would do them on our own bunking up in cheap accommodation, washing our kit in the sink…. Yes, I’m sure we all have done it at some point, and of course having the difficulty of navigating around the mountains. 

We often thought, why is there nothing available like a ski chalet for bikes? After that thought, we began to organise cycling holidays for friends and for our local cycling and triathlon clubs. Pretty soon we were organising 3-5 a year and found it so rewarding. We decided to take the plunge and do this full time, creating a luxury cycling experience which is relaxed and everything is taken care of so all you need to think about is your cycling.

What kind of retreats/packages do you guys offer? How do these packages work?

We offer 2 types of holiday: Chilling and Challenging rider weeks for both 4 night and 7-night trips. We aim to take care of everything; from breakfast made how you like it whether its porridge or smoked salmon and poached eggs, to the latest carbon fibre bike hire and 3-course evening meals washed down with unlimited wine beer, tea, coffee or soft drinks. We even wash your kit at the end of the day! Before guests arrive, they find it helpful to see what a day at Cycle Retreats looks like, or a specific list of what is included.

Through Cycle Retreats, you get to meet so many cyclists from various levels of experience and parts of the world. What is your favourite part of the job?

My favourite part of Cycle Retreats is meeting so many like-minded people. We say and truly believe that guests arrive and friends leave. We are in touch with all our riders and you really do become part of the Cycle Retreats Family. 

Another part I love is seeing riders push themselves further than they believed they could and climb hills they would not even consider at the start of the holiday. To see riders grow in confidence and improve while they are with us is just so rewarding.

What tends to be your guest’s key highlights from their Retreat?

I would like to say the cycling, but the food often gets raised as a highlight… particularly the cake. In all seriousness, riders often comment they can’t believe how much cycling they have done and how strong they feel. To ride the mountains where the pro cyclists train is something that never gets old and we climb several of the mountains that feature on the Vuelta Espana, which people just love to tick off their bucket list. 

To learn more about what Cycle Retreats can offer you, visit the website here or phone Mark/Zoe on 01925 906307