Forest of Dean Trails
The Forest of Dean is a great place to visit any time of year, but it really comes alive in summer. The forest is in full bloom, the birds are singing and there are some great family cycle routes to explore. Their most popular route is a leisurely 11-miler for people of all abilities. Whilst the route isn’t that long (around 2 hours) it’s a great way to familiarise yourself with the forest. It also has several routes that branch off, leading to a variety of great picnic spots and quintessential British villages to visit.
The route is entirely waymarked, so you don’t have to worry about map-reading or getting lost. It also passes by some old railway stations and coal mines which make for some great holiday snap material!
We’d suggest cycling the main route on your first day and making a list of places you’d like to cycle to on your other days in the forest. It’s a great way to get the whole family involved with what you’re going to do whilst you’re there (and hopefully avoiding any arguments)!
Trans Pennine Trail
If you’re planning a trip up to Merseyside this summer, then the Trans Pennine Trail is something that you cannot afford to miss! At 35 miles long, it’s a bit tougher than some other routes but it’s a flat, easy ride that you and the family should be able to do in 5 or 6 hours. We suggest putting a whole day aside, though, and exploring Southport before you start your ride.
The route takes you along a scenic coastal path, so regular stops to do some sightseeing and photo-taking is definitely recommended. Once you finish the coastal route, you’ll be following the Liverpool and Leeds canal to Aintree and eventually reaching Liverpool itself. There are several opportunities along here to shorten the route if some legs are getting tired so don’t worry about finishing the entire route if some family members are struggling!
If you do decide to finish the entirety of the route, you’ll end up in Warrington, where you can get a train back to the beginning of the route. There are plenty of sights to see along this famous cycle route, both rural and urban, which is why it makes our list.
Marriott’s Way, Norfolk
A trip to Norfolk wouldn’t be complete without a day riding the Marriott’s Way. An entirely rural route, with a similar distance to the Trans Pennine Trail, Marriott’s Way is the perfect way to get the family out and about and experience nature first-hand.
The route travels along disused railway tracks and through a variety of grassland and woodland areas. As the route starts in Norwich, expect some cycling on roads at the start and end but the vast majority of the route takes place on flat land free of vehicles.
Marriott’s Way is also perfect for a nature-spotting journey, especially if you’re not planning on doing the entire route. Take a scorecard along and see which one of the kids spots the most animals!
The route is fully marked along the way, but remember to always take a map just in case.
This is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the amazing cycling routes around Britain. Do you have any favourite trails that you want the world to know about? Send us a tweet (@cyclekinguk) or write on our Facebook wall, we’d love to hear from you and expand our list!