I’ve always loved cycling and when I moved to Leeds I worried I wouldn’t be able to get out much. I’m not a super keen road cyclist that goes out for 100miles at a time, I just enjoy getting out and seeing new places while getting a few miles under my belt.
I bought my girlfriend a bike for Christmas last year, only for both bikes to be stolen from my flat car park just 2 months later (that’s another story). We did replace these however and planned a ride in early June, it just so happened that around this time the Commute Cycle Cafe in Ilkley was opening up.
We planned to visit the cafe on its opening weekend and so set off early one Saturday morning. My only guidance was the maps on my phone and a hastily cobbled together paper map. Despite having to navigate some pretty serious hills and losing the route a number of times we eventually made it to Ilkley and found the cafe.
It was really busy with a number of cycle groups already in. The owners were really helpful, moving chairs and ensuring that our bikes were safe and secure. The decor was really minimalist with bare walls and hanging lights, but it really worked and suited the laid back atmosphere.
We ordered a tea and coffee to begin with and sat and watched people come and go. It was incredibly busy but it was great to see the young owner taking time to speak to all the customers.
We sat for so long that I then got tempted by the food. I tried one of the pasties that they had on offer (I regret to say I’ve waited so long to write this blog that I’ve completely forgotten the flavour). I can assure you that I’ve not forgotten quite how tasty it was.
After travelling over a number of unexpected hills on the way there we were considering going back on the train. We spoke with the owners and a couple of the customers who were only too happy to advise on a easier route. My girlfriend was also in need of a new helmet at the time and the guys were only too happy to help as they also sell a variety of bikes and biking accessories.
Definitely worth a visit if you’re in Ilkley, cyclist or not!
Any places within cycling distance of Leeds that anyone can recommend would be much appreciated!