Whilst cycling is a very popular pastime in the UK its probably true to say its not as common as in many other countries where the bicycle is seen as a mode of transport. Many local councils and national cycling organisations are making efforts to get more people on their bikes but at the moment its very much an afterthought.

That said there are a number of National cycle routes making use of disused railway lines and quiet country lanes across the UK. A number longer distance leisure routes are also being launched such as The Rebellion Way in Norfolk and Kind Alfred’s Way

UK Cycling Routes


Carsington Water Cycle Route
High Peak Trail
Ladybower Cycle Route
The Monsal Trail
Manifold Valley Cycle Trail
The Tissington Trail 


Hayling Billy Cycle Route
King Alfred’s Way Cycle Route


The Rebellion Way


The Cinder Track – Scarborough/Whitby


Assynt Achiltibuie Circular Cycle Trail
Ayrshire Coast Cycle Route 
Formartine and Buchan Way Cycle Trail, Aberdeenshire
Coast and Castle Cycle Route
The Hebridean Way
Loch Leven Heritage Cycling Trail

UK Coast to Coast Routes

Devon Coast To Coast
Sea To Sea -Workington/Whitehaven to Tynemouth/Sunderland
Trans Pennine Trail – Southport / Hornsea
Way Of The Roses – Morcambe / Bridlington
Coast and Castles Cycle Route – Newcastle to Edinburgh

Cycle Requirements

Lighting – at night you bike should have a white light at the front and a red light at the back.

Reflectors – Your bike must have a red rear reflector and four amber pedal reflectors. This is not policed however.

Brakes – your cycle must have two working brakes.

Bell / Horn – whilst not required by law a bell is useful for warning pedestrians on shared bike paths.

Helmet – not required by law but recommended.

Cycling laws

1. You must ride on the left and not against the flow of traffic.
2. You should not ride on pavements (sidewalks) unless they are designation as a shared path.
The use of cycle lanes is not compulsory and will depend on your experience and skills, but they can make your journey safer.
3. You should not ride on any path designated as a “Footpath”.
4. When using segregated tracks you MUST keep to the side intended for cyclists as the pedestrian side remains a pavement or footpath.
5. Most bus lanes may be used by cyclists as indicated on signs but watch out for people exiting buses.
6. You must not carry a passenger unless your cycle has been built or adapted to carry one
7. You must not ride when under the influence of drink or drugs, including medicine.
8. You must not cross the stop line when the traffic lights are red. Some road junctions have an advanced stop line (ASL) for cyclists where you can wait ahead of other traffic.
9. Never ride more than two abreast, and ride in single file on narrow or busy roads.