Off the Beaten Path: Summer Cycle Routes UK EditionJun 17, 2022
Cycling gives you the freedom to discover the world in a way that can't be done by car. It allows you to explore roads less travelled and uncover some of the UK's secret gems; all while being the best choice for your health and the environment.
Cycling only for your daily commute to work can start to feel like a chore, and you might lose the magic you once felt while riding, so we're urging you to change that.
Whether you want to find the unexplored nooks and crannies of your local area, or you're willing to pack up your folding bike and head further afield, the UK isn't short of outstanding cycle routes. From quaint villages, forest trails, beaches, famous landmarks and much more, here's a selection of incredible summer cycle routes in the UK.
UK Scenic Summer Bike Rides
We hope this compilation of scenic cycle routes inspires you to venture out on two wheels outside your working week.
Most of the rides are traffic free routes, with dedicated cycle paths or at least safe and quiet lines for cyclists. There’s an awe-inspiring bike route for each corner of the UK, and we have featured a variety of difficulty levels, plenty for leisurely riders or keen cyclists.
Remember, you don't have to cycle the span of the route. Hop on and off any trail when you prefer:
The Camel Trail, Cornwall
This stunning 17-mile trail starts in Padstow and takes you on a meandering ride through the Cornish countryside. The leisurely cycle follows a disused railway, calmly curving through the heart of the county.
You will pass through Wenford Bridge, Wadebridge and Bodmin, and meadows full of flowers. If you're lucky, you might spot some friends along the way; keep your eyes peeled for kingfishers, dormice, otters and maybe even a few bats!
The Wandle Trail, London
This gentle 12-mile ride follows the River Wandle from Wandsworth to Croydon in southwest London. The flat and easy-to-navigate trail crosses some of the capital's pretty green spaces and parks, making it a light and fun ride for families, solo riders and even couples on an activity date.
The National Cycle Route 20 starts at Wandsworth Town Station, leaving you with a mostly traffic-free journey until you reach Croydon.
The 'Wandle Art Trail' can be enjoyed en route, and it's always fun to keep your eye out for London's iconic blue plaques for glimpses into the city's history!
Bath Two Tunnels Circuit, Somerset
For any keen historians, the Bath Two Tunnels Circuit is for you.
The 12-mile journey begins at Bath Spa station, leading you through the Georgian city centre, winding its aqueducts, viaducts and as the name suggests, it passes through two tunnels, one being over a mile long.
Bath Two Tunnels is a fantastic ride for families with children, and you might be able to tell them a tale or two along the way, as the tunnels are found to be a bit spooky!
Rea Valley Route, Birmingham
From urban cityscapes to wild rolling nature, the Rea Valley Route connects Birmingham City Centre to two of the city's delightful parks, Cannon Hill Park and King's Norton Park.
The national cycle network helps to ease the traffic on the route, hop on National Cycle Route 5 and watch the hustle and bustle of the city disappear into the distance.
The cycle route expands further into Lickey Hills, one of Birmingham's most treasured country parks, where you can soak up the views of the city and breathe in the fresh countryside air.
Mawddach Trail, North Wales
The scenery throughout the Mawddach Trail is like something out of a watercolour painting. Enjoy views of the Mawddach Estuary and rolling Welsh hills on most of the journey.
The bike route is 11 miles each way, most of which is along an old railway path, from Barmouth to Dolgellau, with features from Penmaenpool and a nearby off-road trail in Coed y Brenin.
The Settle Circular, Yorkshire
Since the Tour de France voyaged through the breathtaking Yorkshire country back in 2014, God's Own County has come into its own when thinking about the UK's best cycling gems.
Cyclists' Own County, as we will refer to it from here on, has an array of routes from leg-aching to leisurely, allowing cyclists of all abilities to soak up the sheer beauty of Yorkshire on two wheels.
The 18-mile Settle Circular may be for those looking for a slightly challenging route, at times. It starts in Settle and winds through the picturesque villages of Arncliffe, Kilnsey, alongside rivers, and showcases the rolling views of Pen-y-Ghent and Pendle Hill.
A bike route so stunning that it is hard to comprehend.
Explore our Folding Bike Range
From city to coast, countryside or park, our lightweight folding bikes are easy to pack up to explore our country’s sensational panoramas, which are all too easy to forget when busy lives take hold.Explore our full range of folding bikes to find the right transport solution for you; on and off-duty.