Thursday, 30 June 2011

South Wales, UK, The Ultimate Motorcycle Ride?

Motorcycle Routes Through South Wales, UK

Great motorcycle rides don't get any better than this, trust me!

HelmetDress Barcelona is, as you may have guessed, based in Barcelona. However, when we holiday, we like to do it in style and we like to do it with motorcycles. This summer, we ventured outside of Barcelona and took a short 2 hour flight, and 2 hour bus ride to Swansea, South Wales in the UK. Swansea is a city unlike any other in the UK. The beautiful green lined beaches of the Gower Peninsula are linked by some of the wildest, seductive, curvaceous roads you'll ever ride, Motorcycle touring stripped down to what it's all about.

By the way, my name is Ben, I'm an online marketer for HelmetDress and this Barcelona Lifestyle/Motorcycle/Design/Fashion blog is my project. I took my girlfriend and sometimes HelmetDress model Sylvie, to my hometown, Swansea and spent the week ripping around the Gower on my trusty Honda.

The Motorcycle Route ~ South Wales, UK
Swansea. Mumbles. Langland. Caswell. Oxwich. Rhossili. Swansea

Swansea to Mumbles, Coffee, Teacakes & 100% Pleasure!
The weather was clear but slightly windy as we got suited and booted ready for a day of Welsh motorcycle riding. I was a little nervous to take Sylvie on the bike, I don't know what I would do if something happened to her, especially if it was my fault. It was not her first time though, she grew up in California, her and her Father would ride around on his Triumph. She put on my clumpy armored motorcycle jacket and some how managed to make it look like a sexy fashion accessory, ever so slightly more elegant than when I wear it. Coupled with her funky flower helmet cover, she really did look amazing. I gave her a quick crash course on how to ride "pillion" or "Bi*ch" as it's more affectionately known in the UK. We pulled off, the clouds parted and we were bathed in a warm breeze, perfect motorcycle riding weather.

I had promised to go slow, so I did, for at least the first 3 minutes. We hit the straights and I couldn't help but open up the throttle. We headed to Mumbles, only ten minutes riding time from Swansea City Center and I knew the small coastal village feel would make Sylvie smile. As you approach Mumbles, you soon realise that you aren't the only motorcycle fanatics in town, the place is swarming with all kinds of bikes.

Verdi's ice-cream parlor is the main meet up point for bikers in Wales, but I prefer to follow the road passed Verdi's for about half a kilometer to the beautiful Castellamare. It's much the same as Verdi's but I prefer the coffee and quite frankly, the views are better. We had cappuccinos and teacakes, Sylvie hadn't had a teacake before, it's hardly the height of modern cuisine but it hits the spot.

I sat back and took it all in, the bike, the weather, the girl.....I don't think I will ever feel happier than I did at that precise moment.

Castellamare to Langland Bay

We jumped on my loyal Honda and prepared for the motorcycle ride ahead. I chose a short stint from Castellamare to Langland Bay to show off some of my country's natural beauty spots. Langland beach is a small but perfectly formed bay with surfing, tennis courts and a gorgeous lush green golf course. Shame I didn't have room on the bike for my clubs!

Langland Bay to Caswell Bay

Amazingly, for it's size, the Gower Peninsula offers more beaches than you can shake your HelmetDress helmet cover at and you don't have to ride far to find the next beautiful little beach. A short motorcycle wheelie away is Caswell bay, another surf hot-spot and according to Sylvie, similar to parts of California. The sea is bluer than blue and the surrounding cliffs cast deep, vivid shadows across the sandy beach. Shame I didn't have room on the back of my bike for a surfboard!

Caswell Bay to Oxwich Beach, Gower

At this point, I have to add that we actually stopped at a secret beach, hidden away not so very far from the the slightly overcrowded beaches of Caswell and Langland. I will tell you about it's crystal clear water and tiny stretch of pearly sand, but I'm afraid that this is one secret beach in Gower I'm going to have to keep to myself. I took Sylvie to see it and she was as amazed as I was to have found such a beautiful beach with nobody other than ourselves on it, this Gower motorcycle ride was getting better and better.

Oxwich beach, Gower, is one of the most beautiful locations I have ever found and the ride through South Gower and Parkmill is breath taking. "What the hell is this place you are from, Ben? It's like some kind of secret paradise" Sylvie said. I could hardly disagree. The Gower bike ride to Oxwich beach was so amazing, I thought perhaps we should stop, you know, try and finish the motorcycle ride on a high note, but there was one place I knew which could top it all off, Rhossili beach.

.Oxwich to Rhossili Bay - A World Class Motorcycle Ride

My fuel light was on and I questioned whether or not we should risk the motorcycle ride from Oxwich to Rhossili, I pictured us breaking down on the side of a Gower road, with nothing but the 3 peaches I had packed into my tank bag, but then I thought about the mouth watering views of Rhossili downs and worm's head, I decided it was worth the risk and we saddled up once again. Wild sheep were dotted all over the fields and the main motorcycle riding dangers were the crazy horses which ran without warning across the road, those pointy bull's horns didn't give me much confidence either.

I rode slowly and carefully, mainly because I wanted to conserve fuel but also because I wanted to take in the scenery, it was like something from Jurassic park and I have to confess, I was humming the theme tune to myself in my helmet. Rhossili must be the greenest place on earth and next to that stretching sea, words cannot really describe this place.

So there we have it, a motorcycle ride I will never forget, right on my front doorstep, I suggest you do the same as soon as possible, before the summer sun drifts away and the days become dark and dreary. Of course, if you have any other motorcycle routes that we should know about let us know, we are always hungry for ADVENTURE at HelmetDress HQ!

If you want to buy your own HelmetDress Helmet Covers, just visit our online store

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yours truly,
Ben Holbrook

Tuesday, 21 June 2011

HelmetDress Support Luke McEvoy's India Rickshaw Run

Our friend Luke is taking a 150cc rickshaw( tuk-tuk) 5000km across India's toughest terrain - Adventurer or Idiot?

It's not often people get a chance to do something big, to make a difference or help somebody in need, but when they do, we at HelmetDress believe these people should be encouraged and supported.
Let me introduce you to our friend Luke Mcevoy. Luke is taking part in a 5000km road trip across the whole width of India, from Shillong to Jailasmer. This may sound like a barrel of laughs, but when you see that he is planning to do it in a 150cc rickshaw, it soon becomes obvious that this is by no means going to be an easy or even pleasurable journey. In fact, I'm really rather glad it's him and not me. As Luke puts it, "As we battle through some of the most difficult terrain India has to offer, as well as the inevitable breakdowns, breakages and bouts of illness." It really sounds lovely doesn't it!

Why is Luke doing the India Rickshaw Run?
Apart from the fact that our friend Luke is bonkers, he's actually trying to do something very very special indeed. The Rickshaw run is all about raising money for FRANK WATER. "FRANK Water was founded by Katie Alcott in 2005, after she visited India and contracted dysentery after drinking dirty water. Coming back to the UK she realised that by selling ethical bottled water she could use the profits to fund new clean water facilities for villages in need. 5 years on…FRANK Water is now two distinct entities. FRANK Water Projects, a small registered charity (No. 1121273) that can receive your direct donations, and FRANK Water Products, a not-for-profit social enterprise which continues to give 100% of its profits to the charity."

When is Luke doig the India Rickshaw Run?
8th September 2011: Pre Rickshaw Run meeting, Test Drive, Rickshaw Pimping.
9th September 2011: Pre Rickshaw Run meeting, Test Drive, Pre Run Test.
10th September 2011: Start Party.
11th September 2011: Official Start Line Ceremony.
24th September 2011: The Finish Line party.

Follow & Sponsor Luke's India Rickshaw Run
You can follow Luke's India Rickshaw Run here on the HelmetDress blog, or you can visit his blog ~ How he plans to tackle this huge challenge and blog at the same time is a mystery and we can only hope he gets home in one piece. 

Be part of the action and sponsor Luke by clicking -----------------> HERE!! :)

For more about HelmetDress and to see our broad range of unique, fashion helmet covers, visit our official site NOW. 

Friday, 17 June 2011

Sant Joan Festival Barcelona ~ HelmetDress Summer Events Guide

Sant Joan Festival is finally here!

Here at HelmetDress Barcelona, we are all about FUN in the SUN! The summer has arrived and we are looking forward to Barcelona's BIGGEST and CRAZIEST party, The Sant Joan Festival.

What is the Sant Joan Festival all about?
Sant Joan is a firework fueled event, celebrating the longest day of the year and the Summer Solitce. Catalans know this night as the ‘Nit del Foc’ or night of fire and basically, set fire to everything in site.  Everybody gets together, often at people's houses/flats, but also at the beach and it is here that I would suggest you go. 

Last year I went to a Barcelona beach with a bunch of friends, we drank beer and rum, ate pasta, played guitars and watched fireworks. Actually, I almost got blown up by a fire work and I suggest that if you do go out to a San Joan party, be careful of drunk people lighting fireworks, they really are crazy!

When is the Sant Joan Festival?
Sant joan Festival celebrating the longest day of the year is officially on the 23rd & 24th of June. To be honest, it's another excuse for a party, and you will find people celebrating Sant Joan when and however they can. 

Where is San Joan Festival?
Barcelona becomes one giant party for Sant Joan and to be honest, you don't really need to plan any thing. Just grab your friends and hit the streets, there will be fireworks everywhere and most of the bars will be doing something special to celebrate. After a few drinks in the Barcelona bars, I suggest you take your friends down to the beach, maybe Barceloneta or further down towards Marbella if you need more space, EVERYBODY and I mean EVERYBODY will be there, with fireworks, music and dancing. 

Let us know if you go and check out Barcelona Sant Joan, we would love to hear your stories.

Wednesday, 15 June 2011

Merge Your World ~ Welcome to the official HelmetDress Blog

The Official HelmetDress Blog is Here!

HelmetDress - Helmet covers 
HelmetDress is a modern company based in Barcelona. Born in April 2006 with the mission to merge the motorcycle and fashion words. HelmetDress is the first and only company that has created a helmet cover patented and manufactured in Lycra® and polyester that fits every type of helmet and allows you to renew its image. Although the company operates in countries worldwide, our main office is located in Barcelona, Spain.

The HelmetDress Blog
Follow the HelmetDress Blog for evereything happening in the cool, underground world of fashion, design and motorcycle worlds. You will know what's happening, and everything worth knowing, welcome to our world. Welcome to The HelmetDress Blog.