2014 Travel Awards: Best Bike Destination

The Scottish Highlands.     Photo: Rob Henderson/Getty Images

Winner: Scotland

Scottish mountain-biking addict Euan Wilson and his fat-tire friends spent two years getting lost on sheep trails and other singletrack ribbons to map an epic new route. The 155-mile-long journey from Bonar Bridge to Apple­cross—home of the Applecross Inn, Scotland’s 2012 pub of the year—traverses some of the country’s most rugged areas. (The only way to access the starting point for day two is by speedboat.) Wilson’s H&I Adventures will take you on a seven-day blast along the trail, popping into villages each evening for pints (from $1,777; mountainbikeworldwide.com).

Runner-Up: Blue Ridge Mountains

The swath of 6,000-foot peaks in the Carolinas have winding roads, great food, and incredible views. In other words, it rivals anything overseas. Piece together your own trip by staying in Travelers Rest, South Carolina, at George Hincapie’s Hotel Domestique (from $295; hoteldomestique.com)—a European-style hotel with on-site bike service and GPS units programmed with Hincapie’s favorite area rides—and pedal north through the mountains to Asheville, North Carolina, with a pit stop at the Thirsty Monk, or south to Greenville gastropub the Owl. Or join an outfitted trip with Backroads Tours and let them handle the logistics, from hotels to the shuttle vehicle (from $2,798; backroads.com).

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