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Family Cycling


The Camel Trail
The Camel Trail winds through some of Cornwall's most beautiful and little known countryside. There are many visitors to the Trail each year; some use it daily for jogging or bird watching, others for an occasional day out walking or cycling.
Being on an old railway track the Trail is virtually level all the way. The surface is mainly smooth and so ideal for wheelchair users, pram and buggy pushers.

Pentewan Valley Trail
Pentewan near Mevagissey.

A shorter version of the Camel Trail, traffic free and level, hence particularly suitable for families. Nearly 3 miles long, past the sluice ponds, through ancient oak woodland and alongside the River. Car parking at both ends. Cycle hire available. Pentewan used to be an important Port. Though the Harbour entrance is now blocked by sand, the Harbour Basin with its wooden sluice gates, like the sleepy village itself is a delight to explore. The beach is broad and sandy, popular with sailors, home to a thriving local sailing club. From the end of the Trail Heligan Gardens is only a short cycle ride away. Happily (some may say) the Pentewan Trail is far less popular than Camel Trail.





Longdendale Trail
The Longdendale Trail runs for around 6.5 miles, from just beyond Hadfield Station to the entrance to the Woodhead Tunnel. Following the Trans-Pennine railway closed in 1981.
This is an excellent trail, especially for families and beginners. The surface is of smooth sand, which can make the going quite difficult when it is wet. This is not really a trail to try in bad weather, as it is very open to the elements. It is advisable therefore to choose your direction of travel according to the wind direction.

Sett Valley Trail
The Sett Valley Trail runs 2.5 miles. It runs from Hayfield Station to New Mills.
The Sett Valley Trail is at first hard work with many gates and obstructions to negotiate. However, from Hayfield onwards it is quite very pleasant. Hayfield village is well worth a visit and if you want to see some of the unspoilt countryside, then walk from the car park near Bowden Bridge towards Kinderlow Edge past Tunstead Clough Farm.

Middlewood Way
The Middlewood Way runs for a total of 11 miles, from Marple to Macclesfield.
The Middlewood Way is provides the ideal opportunity for a quiet and enjoyable family outing. Picnic sites are situated at various points along the trail. The Middlewood Way also offers walkers a number of alternative routes and circular walks via the nearby Macclesfield Canal and Ladybrook Valley.

Monsal Trail
The Monsal Trail runs for 8.5 miles between Blackwell and Monsal Head
The Monsal Trail follows the deep limestone valley of the River Wye with crags towering 100 metres above, a river that changes from a fast flowing torrent to a serene lakeland paradise, and spanned by the Monsal Viaduct. This trail is among the very best that you'll find in the Peak National Park.

High Peak Trail
The High Peak Trail joins up with the Tissington Trail at Parsley Hay. It is 17.5 miles long and follows the old Cromford Railway, starting at Cromford and finishing at Dowlow, south of Buxton.
This is perhaps the most interesting of the trails because this old railway line is much less straight than other railways, with sharp curves which seem to give frequent changes of view. For a railway line it is, in fact, not level and has several fairly steep inclines, which now provide variety for the cyclist.
N.B. The steep inclines may seem fun, however cyclists are not advised to ride on them.

Tissington Trail
Together with The High Peak Trail, this is the oldest of the Peak District Trails. It runs 13 miles from what was Ashbourne Station to join The High Peak Trail at Parsley Hay.
This is a very pleasant ride, the surface is limestone so will be good in all weathers. The northern half runs over the limestone uplands, the remainder being the through softer lines of the lower valleys where the trail is largely wooded, giving occasional glimpses of the landscape. This trail is uphill all the way North, so it is a good idea to head North first.

Manifold Track
The Manifold Track, located entirely within Staffordshire, runs for a total of 9 miles. It meanders through two river valleys; the Manifold and the Hamps.

The section of the Manifold Valley through which this track runs is quite a good example of the deep limestone valleys of the White Peak. It is quite wooded so the views are not as spectacular as other trails. The most notable feature is Thor's Cave.
N.B. The section between Wettonmill and Swainsley is open to vehicles, so you will need to keep close to children





Tarka Trail

Thirty two miles of the Tarka Trail are a cycle/walkway, following the old railway line from Braunton on the north Devon coast, to Petrockstow deep in the heart of Tarka Country. This part of the Trail offers easy, flat, traffic-free cycling suitable for all the family around the wide expanse of the Taw/Torridge Estuary, before following the River Torridge inland.



The Crab and Winkle Line
A 12 kilometre off-road link between Canterbury and Whitstable, along parts of the now disused Crab and Winkle railway line, the first passenger line to be opened in the world.

Canterbury to Fordwich
A short route of only 2.6 kilometres, it is a pleasant and safe route for all the family. Following the Stour River with places to picnic, a lovely pond and two great pubs at Fordwich.
The Escape Route

Bewl Water -
A 21 kilometre off-road route around Bewl Water Reservoir.
For details
Tel: 01892 890661

Thames-Medway Canal
7 kilometres of very flat cycle route through the North Kent Marshes from Higham to Gravesend. There is a bridleway detour to Shornemead Napoleonic Fort.

Bedgebury Forest
There are a number of cycle routes through the Forest. Information is available on arrival at the forest centre. For more information on cycling around Tunbridge Wells and Bedgebury Forest, why not buy one of our the Parish Pedals packs.

Dover to Folkestone and Hythe
Using National Cycle Route 2, this route follows the top of the White Cliffs, with fantastic views along the coastline. From the centre of Folkestone, the route is almost totally off-road for a further 10 kilometres to the Royal Military Canal.

Riverside Country Park
Cycling from Otterham Quay to the Strand at Gillingham, this 7 kilometre route follows the coastline through the North Kent Marshes area, famous for its bird life.

Trosley Country Park
This park covers 160 acres of the North Downs near Meopham. Cyclists are permitted to use the main routes through the woodland, if they are prepared to travel slowly and give way to pedestrians. Mountain bikers and other cyclists looking for more adventurous routes should use the bridleway around the perimeter of the park.

Shorne Wood Country Park
This 174 acre park is situated near Cobham, off the A2. There is a safe cycling and horse riding route around the park.

There are 4 kilometres of cycle routes around Bluewater shopping complex, passing peaceful lakes and picnic spots. Bike hire is available at Bluewater and there are cycle racks, lockers and a centre specifically designed for cyclists to lock bikes and take a shower before going shopping. Bluewater is linked to National Cycle Network Route 1.

Samphire Hoe
This new piece of Britain was created from the material dug during the building of the Channel Tunnel. It is situated just off National Cycle Route 2 of the National Cycle Network, between Dover and Folkestone. If you have to travel by car, it is just off the A20. There are three kilometres of cycle routes, some beautiful scenery, interesting wildlife and a small café and toilets.

Penshurst Off-Road Centre (PORC)
This fantastic facility is open all year in Viceroys Wood. There are a number of off-road routes for all levels of ability, from very technical to some great leisure routes. Cycles can also be hired on site. Contact PORC on 01892 870136.

Sittingbourne to Conyer Creek
A beautifully quiet route running for 3 kilometres from Sittingbourne Stadium along the spectacular North Kent Marshes to the delightful village of Conyer.

Faversham to Graveney
A delightful section of National Cycle Route 1, along Faversham Creek to the hamlet of Graveney. The route continues on quiet country lanes to Seasalter and Whitstable. From there you can cycle the 12 kilometre section of National Cycle Route 1 along the Crab and Winkle Way, to Canterbury. There are regular trains back to Faversham from Canterbury.




Tandle Hill to Hollins.
17km (11 miles)

90% car free
Its a medium ride no major hills and almost all well surfaced.
Best on a mountainBike or Hybrid as it does have a high propertion of off road riding.
It is suitable for beginners and children.
Entrance to the car park at Tandle Hill country park, Royton Oldham is on the A671 Between Oldham and Rochdale.
Stations close by are:Oldham 4km and Rochdale 3km and shaw & compton 2.5km.
There is a cafe at the vistors centre, open most weekends and 1 pub enroute.

Great views from Tandle Hill, The Rochdale canal and good paths all around Hopwood Hall.

This route forms a figure of 8, the paths are good and the views are brilliant.
While the loops north of hollins includes really good tracks.the two tracks are connected by a short stretch on the towpath of the rochdale canal.
Tandle hill is one of Oldhams oldest country parks with 110 acres of woodland and grass land, great views toward the pennines and the east.

Submitted By DaisyBev

Lancaster – Morecambe
3 miles

Starting from the city's Millennium Bridge, the cycle path is a direct route to the seaside resort of Morecambe.

Lancaster – Caton
5 miles

From the Millennium Bridge, head out to the Lune Valley along this riverside cycle path. There are stunning view from the Crook O' Lune

Lancaster – Glasson
5 miles

Ride down the Lune Estuary to the historic dock at Glasson, where you can see boats unloading

Lancaster – Snatchems
2 miles

Cycle along the north side of the river to Snatchems, where the press gang operated.

Lancaster Canal (Lancaster – Carnforth
6 miles

You can cycle along the way as the canal from Lancaster to Carnforth. Bring some bread to feed the ducks.

North Shore Cycle Route
4 miles

Cycle down the Prom from Cleveleys to North Pier in the heart of Blackpool

Stanley Park – Staining
 2 miles

Combine a visit to the zoo with a cycle ride from Stanley Park to the nearby village of Staining on an off road path

Wyre Estuary Country Park
1½ miles

Cycle alongside the Wyre Estuary from Stannah.

Ribble Valley
Dunsop Bridge
2 miles

The bridleway up the valley from Dunsop Bridge is tarmac and a good place to take kids.

Old Tramway Cycle Route Preston – Bamber Bridge
3 miles

Following an old tramway, this route links Avenham Park on the banks of the River Ribble with Bamber Bridge

River Ribble Cycle
Path 3 miles

You can cycle alongside the River Ribble from The Tickled Trout by the motorway junction to Penwortham Bridge, past riverside meadows, woods and parks. Take care when crossing the busy London Road

Chorley Area
Cuerden Valley Park, Chorley
3 miles

You can cycle for three miles through this attractive park, north of Chorley.

Astley Park
1 mile

Cycle through the park to historic Astley Hall. Look at the hens and ducks on the way.

Rivington Country Park
2 miles plus

Cycle down to the lake for a short ride. Longer rides can also be made in the park.

West Lancashire
Cheshire Lines
4 miles

Following an old railway this path takes you from Ainsdale, near Southport to Lydiate, through the West Lancashire countryside. It links with the cycle path on the front at Southport

Woodnook Greenway Accrington – Baxenden
2½ miles
A delightful path along an old railway through a wooded valley.

Padiham – Ightenhill
2 miles

A delightful route along the peaceful Calder Valley to Ightenhill Bridge. There is a steep path up from the bridge to Ightenhill.

Canal Towpath
7 miles

Take the kids on the canal towpath. You can cycle all the way from Burnley to Barnoldswick and there are places to stop on the way.


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Cycle Trails
Foxton Locks Trail - Leicestershire
Grand Union Canal

This route gently winds its way through rural South Leicestershire along a section of the Grand Union Canal towpath that was built in 1809 as part of the original Grand Junction Canal.
It starts in the lovely old town of Market Harborough and passes through some of Leicestershire's most attractive countryside Highlights along the way are the picturesque, and fascinating Foxton Locks and Inclined Plane.

Vital Statistics and details

* Surface - all weather

* Distance - 6 miles (8km)
* Difficulty Level - moderate
* 100% (canal towpath)
* Parking - Foxton Locks Country Park, Gumley Road (£1 charge), Union Wharf, Market Harborough
* Public Toilets - Foxton Locks Country Park Car Park, Union Wharf
* Refreshments - café, Foxton Locks, Union Inn Hotel, nr Union Wharf, various shops, cafes and pubs in Market Haborough
* Other Routes to Try - Market Harborough Round, Brampton Valley Way, Grand Union Canal to Leicester

British Waterways have opened many towpaths throughout the country for cycling. For more information go to

Submitted by Patch666




North East Lincolnshire
Humberston to Cleethorpes Pier

2 1/4 miles

This path is ideal for young children to cycle on with or without stabilisers. You can park at the southern end in Havens Thorpe Park car-park free of charge (I didn't see any signs indicating parking was for Thorpe Park guests only). The 1st section of the promenade as far as the Leisure Centre is a fairly narrow path painted with a white line separating cyclists from pedestrians. You will pass Pleasure Island Theme Park, Cleethorpes Coast Light Railway, and the Boating Lake where you will also find the Discovery Centre, Sand pit and Paddling Pool. All the afore mentioned attractions can be reached without crossing or cycling on a road. After passing the Leisure Centre, you have to share a section of the wide promenade with the Land Train. This is not as dangerous as it may sound, I just waited for the train to set off and followed it along the promenade, but I'm sure the driver is always on the look out for cyclists. At the end of this section there is no marked cycle path on the promenade as far as the Pier but I didn't notice any signs prohibiting cycling and there were racks to lock bikes up at the side of the promenade. If you wish to continue beyond the Pier, either on the promenade or on the road, you will pass the Railway Station and reach Wonderland Sunday Market at the Northern end of the prom.

Submitted by MissElaineouse

Mablethorpe to Anderby Creek, including '2000 Cycleway' (Mablethorpe to Sutton-on-Sea)

6 miles

Cyclists share this route with pedestrians and the occasional council vehicle, but there is plenty of room for all. From Mablethorpe to Moggs Eye, it is promenade, with a track from Moggs Eye to Anderby Creek. The sea-views to the east are wonderful. Please note, there may be sand on the prom. in places and it is advisable to dismount and push your bike through these areas. You could start this ride in the centre of Mablethorpe by the fun-fair, but as there are usually a lot a pedestrians around here, it is better to start a little further South on the promenade just in front of Queens Park. There is a pay-and-display car-park here at the Eastern end of Seaholme Road. From Mablethorpe to Sutton-on-Sea (2000 Cycleway), the prom. is lined with static caravans and beach huts. At the small resort of Sutton-on-Sea, some of the usual sea-side amenities are to be found. There is a pub on the prom. here with secure cycle parking. After leaving Sutton-on-Sea and passing Sandilands there is a large golf course directly behind the sea-wall so there are open countryside views inland if you ever tire of looking out to sea. You will then pass through Huttoft Bank sea-view car-park, so care must be taken as you share a very short section with motorists. An attendant collects parking fees here only at busy periods. This may be as far as you wish to proceed especially if accompanied by young children, as unfortunately, from Huttoft Bank to Moggs Eye the promenade appears to be always well covered with sand, so a good deal of 'push-biking' is necessary, but it is worth it to continue the journey to Anderby Creek. When you reach Moggs Eye, you will need to push your cycles over the sand dunes to get to the free car-park and picnic area from where you can follow a track (part grass, part gravel) into the car-park at Anderby Creek where there is a licensed cafe with a garden.

Submitted by MissElaineouse



Rutland Water Cycleway
Rutland Water

Covering 3,100 acres, Rutland Water is the largest lowland man made lake in Western Europe. The Rutland Water Cycle Way offers some of the best casual leisure cycling in the country, for the most part following waterside tracks offering splendid views of the reservoir, and Hambleton Peninsula.

Vital Statistics :

* Surface - all weather
* Type of Route - circular
* Distance - 25 miles (40km)
* Difficulty Level - moderate
* % Off-Road - 95%
* Parking - Whitwell,Whitwell Creek and Normanton and
* Public Toilets - Whitwell, Whitwell Creek, Barnsdale Creek and Normanton
* Refreshments - Whitwell, Whitwell Creek, Barnsdale Creek and Normanton, plus pubs in Manton and Edith


Submitted by Patch666



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