What's Cool In Road Cycling

The UK Road Cycling Hotspots You Should Know About 

Discovering the UK’s stunning places on two wheels is an exciting feat. But, as enjoyable as it is, it can be too easy to fall into the trap of sticking to your usual route. If the thought of pedalling your bike on the same old path is getting you down, refer below for some inspiration on the best places to go and enjoy a scenic ride. From The Lake District’s Lakeland Loop to the Wild Atlantic Way of Ireland, here are some of the UK’s road cycling hotspots.

1. The Lakeland Loop, Lake District

The Lakeland Loop is a 40-mile cycling route around the Lake District and is dubbed one of the best cycling paths in Britain. It is a scenic ride covering some of the finest views of the Lake District, passing through Whinlatter Pass, Hardknott Pass and Wrynose Pass. 

The ride begins with a flowing 10 miles by the tranquil lake of Coniston Water, featuring incredible views across the lake to the Old Man of Coniston. At the head of the lake, prepare to take a sharp climb towards Hawkshead Hill and into the Wild Boar Pub, following a descent down the winding Cumbrian lanes towards Little Langdale.

Prepare your legs for the climb, which requires lots of spinning. From the top, you will descend for 15 miles all the way to Broughton in Furness, where you will find the Square Cafe, a perfect place to rest and enjoy some food and drinks. But your journey is not yet over, as you still have to ascent Woodland Fell. Finally, the last two miles will all be downhill.

2. Stroud Valleys Trail, The Cotswolds 

Cyclists are spoilt for choice when cycling around the Cotswolds. There’s a wide range of country lanes, bridleways, and cycleways suitable to cyclists of all levels. Best of all, these trails guarantee incredible views! One of the best cycling routes in the Cotswolds is the Stroud Valleys Trail, a 5-mile route along the National Cycle Network, linking Stonehouse to Nailsworth.

The Stroud Valleys Trail begins in the town of Stonehouse, set in the Stroud Valley. Stonehouse is a bustling small town with rich industrial history. After a bit of exploring, pedal your way to the old railway line, where you can enjoy incredible views of the Cotswolds. The path is not far from the water, and throughout the journey, you will see scenic views of the River Frome, Nailsworth Stream, and the Stroudwater Canal.

You can also access Minchinhampton and Rodborough Commons from this path. While it requires a challenging ride uphill, the views are well worth the effort. And when you’re back in town, you can relax at some of the great holiday cottages in the Cotswolds, perfect for cyclists looking to stop off somewhere as they cycle through the region.

3. The Camel Trail, Cornwall 

Without a doubt, some of the UK’s best road cycling hotspots are in Cornwall. Regardless of your level of fitness and the type of bike you ride, there’s something for you in Cornwall. One of these is the Camel Trail, a perfect opportunity to get away from the hustle and bustle and explore some of the UK’s most stunning scenery on a bike. 

The Camel cycle trail is a popular path for cyclists in Cornwall, stretching from the harbour town of Padstow on the North Coast and taking you to the banks of River Camel before arriving inland to Wadebridge, Bodmin Moor, and beyond. The trail is 11 miles long, from Padstow to Bodmin. But if you’re up for some challenge, you can take the additional six miles up to Blisland along Bodmin Moor.

As one of the longest and most established trails in Cornwall, you will find plenty of opportunities to hire bikes when cycling this trail. There’s also no shortage of stop-off points where you can take a break for refreshments. The Camel Trail is perfect for families since it’s traffic-free, and most paths are generally flat. 

4. Assynt Achiltibuie Circuit, Scotland  

Whether you want to cycle through rolling hills, stunning coastal paths, or mysterious woodland, Scotland offers some of the UK’s most scenic cycling paths. The country boasts numerous cycling routes and trails suitable for all levels of cyclists. One of Scotland’s most popular circular cycling trails is the Assynt Achiltibuie Circular in the Highlands. 

It’s worth noting that the Assynt Achiltibulie Circuit trail is more suited to advanced cyclists. If you’re a beginner, this trail may not suit you. While it’s a challenging trail to conquer, the stunning coastal scenery makes the journey well worth it. You will start in Achiltibuie, then make your way north towards Lochinver. The route follows a coastal trail towards Drumbeg and Newton before reaching the road at Loch Assynt and Ardvreck Castle.

What’s great about your cycling adventure in the Assynt Achiltibuie Circuit is you’ll have the opportunity to rent a castle in Scotland, perfect for those travelling in a group and looking to enjoy a unique cycling holiday.

5. Wild Atlantic Way Cycle Route, Ireland 

Cycling in Ireland will take you through stunning landscapes and the country’s most scenic roads. The country offers a variety of cycling trails, from easy paths perfect for a family bike ride to demanding routes to test your ability. If you are up for some challenge, conquer the 1,600-km Wild Atlantic Way, which takes you through the remote windswept headland and stunning sea cliffs, passing through pretty towns and villages.

If you are not keen on cycling the entire path, you can choose from different routes along the Wild Atlantic Way. For instance, you can bike from Malin Head to Fanad Lighthouse. It’s an 80 km trail taking you to Inishowen Peninsula and towards the edge of Lough Swilly. 

You can also bike the 130 km trail from Fanad Lighthouse to Slieve League, which requires an uphill climb through the Donegal landscape, surrounded by beautiful lakes on either side, as you make your way inland into the Glenveagh National Park.

 

 

 

 

 

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