Best Cycling Routes in the UK

It’s often said that the UK pales in comparison to the likes of France and Holland when it comes to cycling. The laws protecting cyclists are different, the weather is different, but is it fair to say UK routes are not on par? Think again.

With summer upon us, the window of opportunity for outdoor endeavours is here, and what better way to spend it than a brisk cycling route to see what the countryside and the country’s roads have to offer. A good bike ride can be as intense as you want to make it. The low impact on your joints puts it above the likes of running and hiking, and your legs will get a better workout than the average swim.

Top 6 Cycling Routes In The UK

So, if you’re looking for an alternative to the beer garden, or fancy finding one in a slightly more remote area, why not try out one (or more) of the following UK cycling routes.

Lake District

What would a list of scenic cycling routes be without the Lake District? Really, you can take your pick of just about any direction for a scenic route, but because motorists may have the same notions, it is recommended you stick to the northern and western lakes. If you’re looking for the Lakeland cycling challenge, head for the Hardknott and Wrynose passes between Eskdale and Langdale.

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Head for the Cheviots, a large upland area along the Scottish border with views of forests, and the coast. Here you’ll find miles of quiet roads, and beach settings to soothe you when you’re feeling the burn.

Surrey Hills

Southerners, this one’s for you. Running from Farnham in the west to Oxted in the east and south to the Low Weald, the Surrey Hills are for cycling enthusiast in Hurtwood and Coldharbour. For the South-East of England, you’ll find something close to peace and quiet with a backdrop of stunning woodlands as well as inclines for those after a challenge.


The Cotswolds sees you riding from Oxfordshire, along the M5 to Gloucestershire, and featuring views of the hills of Wiltshire and Vale of Evesham. The Cotswolds features postcard-perfect scenes of the English countryside.

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Giant’s Causeway and Antrim Coast

Make the most of Northern Ireland and its sea views by cycling the north-east corner. If you’re looking for inclines and slopes, the Torr Head road is recommended. For a spot of peace and tranquillity, the Glens of Antrim are your best bet, which is further inland. Word has it that the Giant’s Causeway was once the training ground for pro cyclists Martin Irvine and Philip Deignan.

Yorkshire Dales

Along the Cumbria end of the M6, but higher up so that you avoid the tourists, the northern Dales provide just about the best cycling in the UK. Of note, cyclists are well-thought of here with accommodation and cafes for pit stops along your way. When it comes to the most popular Dale to cycle, it’s about tied with the easier going, the quieter being the lower down Dales.

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Faye Reid

Faye Reid

Writer and expert

Faye has a MSc in Sport Physiology and Nutrition, and puts her passion into practice as goal attack for her netball team, and in competitive event riding. She enjoys a pun, and in her spare time loves dog walking and eating out.

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