Best Cycling Cities in the UK


If the upcoming Tour de France has put you in the biking mood, why not plan a trip that involves getting about on two wheels? There are hundreds of great biking opportunities in the UK, particularly, recently, in the cities. The construction of bike paths and the introduction of rent-by-the-hour bike schemes mean the best and healthiest way to see the city is often on a bike. Here are some of the best cities to cycle around in the UK:


1. London

“Boris Bikes” aren’t only for commuters and Londoners. They’re a great way to see the capital as a visitor too. London is covered in bike lanes, and the Thames is the perfect route guide as you can bike along almost all of its length through the city. The transport for London website offers a great list of leisure routes and full instructions on how to hire your own Boris Bike.


2. Bristol

A few years ago, Bristol was named Britain’s first “cycling city” by the Department of Transport, and things have only got better for cyclists since then. With plenty of traffic free areas and more bike shops than you could possibly need, the city is ideal for exploring by renting a bike or bringing your own. If you fancy a longer ride, there’s a special bike route along an old railway line from Bristol to Bath, which will show you plenty of beautiful scenery between the two cities. Stay in our Bath Central hotel, or our Bristol Central hotel, at either end.

Nottingham castle

3. Nottingham

Another city popular with cyclists is Nottingham. This summer the city council will be organising free bike tours throughout the area. The Skyride scheme aims to get people out and about, particularly to the lesser-known areas of Nottingham, and will offer bike tours to suit all levels and abilities. Book a tour or two and then reserve a room in our Nottingham Central hotel for the perfect weekend break.

Joseph Priestley statue, Leeds City Centre, West Yorkshire

4. Leeds

This year’s Tour de France is putting Leeds, and surrounding Yorkshire, firmly on the cycling map. But the city and the countryside around it is already a great place to hop on a bike. The city has an expanding network of cycle lanes and routes, so a bike is a great way to see all there is to see. In September, if you feel like a challenge, why not join Yorkshire’s own version of the Tour, in the form of the Big Leeds 100 Mile Bike Ride? The event promises lots of stiff competition for those who want it, and plenty of fun for those who’d rather take time to appreciate the scenery. Stay in our Leeds Central hotel to be there for the city’s big cycling events.


5. Cambridge

Biking is the way to get around this famous university town. If you have an interest in history, join the well-over-a-century-old student tradition of bicycling around the city, and see all the landmark sights. Much of the university’s campus is very difficult, if not impossible, to drive around, so biking really is the best way to get a glimpse of some of the most important and beautiful Cambridge buildings. Stay in our Cambridge Central hotel for a peaceful break and some lovely bike riding.