Top Cycling Routes to try this Autumn
Following on from our previous blog post on taking your bike on the train this autumn, you may be planning on going on a long cycle ride soon. Indeed, before the weather gets too cold, this season brings its own beauty to the country, and the UK has a multitude of picturesque and easily-followed routes. Here we have compiled a list of 10 medium length cycling routes to get you started.
1. The Viking Coast Trail - Taking in the best of the Kentish coastline, this route begins in Birchington and rolls through the lovely towns of Westgate on Sea, Margate, Broadstairs and Ramsgate before turning back inland. Along the route, be sure to take a stop at St. Mildred's Bay and Botany Bay.
2. South Coast Promenade - Just south from London, another coastal run begins at the Marine Parade and rolls through the quiet country lanes around the Widewater Lagoon and subsequently to the busy, industrial port of Shoreham, before finally hitting the bustling streets and funfairs of Brighton and Hove.
3. The Camel Trail - Further west, experience the best Cornwall has to offer on this wild and varied route. Beginning in Padstow and heading to Wenford Bridge via Wadebridge and Bodmin, the Camel Trail takes you from seaside towns through to the woodland of the upper Camel Valley as well as the Camel Estuary and the brooding Bodmin Moor.
4. The Elan Valley Trail - Moving up to Wales, the Elan Valley Trail will give you incredible views of the dark lakes and impressive hills of 'Wale's Lake District', centred around the impressive reservoir.
5. Causeway Coast Cycle Route - For those looking to head across the Irish Sea, this route hugs the North Atlantic coast as well as part of the National Cycle Route 93. On this run you can take in sea views from Barmouth over the mouth of the River Bann as well as from Portstewart over to Scotland and the Mull of Kintyre. Be sure also to stop off at the UNESCO world heritage site, the Giant's Causeway.
6. Ayshire Coast Cycleway - Into Western Scotland, this dramatic path takes in the wild coastline between Irvine and Ayr, with stunning views across to the fairy tale Isle of Arran. Also along the route are two Scottish Wildlife Reserves, where one can delve deep into ancient forests.
7. Lighthouse to Lighthouse - Back down and east into England, this cycleway passes through some of the best of Tyne & Wear - beginning at the Souter Lighthouse in South Shields, where the Marsden Bay can be taken in, head north and across the Tyne ferry to Tynemouth and its cinematic Priory before taking the causeway to the iconic St. Mary's Lighthouse.
8. Trans Pennine Trail - Witness everything the Pennines has to offer on this comprehensive route that begins in Leeds before hugging the River Aire and its old canal and railway paths down to the Rother Valley and Sheffield and finally out into Derbyshire.
9. Essex Rivers - Just outside of London and easily accessible are some of the most picturesque and gentle rides in southern England. From Crouch to Blackwater, take in the quaint villages of North Fambridge, Althorne, Latchingdon, Mundon, Maldon, Purleigh and Cold Norton.
10. London - From the hustle and bustle of the city to the quiet countryside of Surrey, hug the Thames from Putney Bridge west and you will pass through Richmond Park and out of the city.