Cycling in the UK is a fantastic adventure, with a fantastic network of cycle paths and gorgeous countryside lanes. Every town you travel through has a captivating history as well as a delectable local delicacy. The plentiful farmers’ markets and boisterous bars you visit will undoubtedly leave you with wonderful memories.
Cycling opportunities abound in the region, which Brits may sometimes overlook. From the peaceful rolling farmland of the south to the moorland landscapes of the Peak District, Pennines and Yorkshire Dales, to the more difficult mountainous portions of Wales and Scotland, the UK boasts a diverse terrain.
For an idyllic countryside tour while cycling in the UK, try staying away from the road traffic to discover more distinctive and eye-catching scenery. Here are a few things you may need to consider to help you get started:
The location of designated cycle lanes varies around the United Kingdom. However, they are mostly found in towns and cities. Some towns will likely be of a higher standard than others due to the local government determining quality and quantity. Some cycle pathways are isolated from traffic, although the majority are either segregated parts of the road or shared pedestrian walkways.
There is no regulatory body for campsites in the United Kingdom, and there are no national standards or recognized star ratings for the amenities available at each location. The quality and quantity of facilities might vary greatly from one location to the next. Most sites would usually charge per person for tour pitches that include washrooms, showers, and a washing up area. Some facilities have free showers, although most showers are metered with coins or tokens.
The Ordnance Survey maps of Great Britain are the greatest cycling maps because they cover the entire country. Available in the most high-street bookshops in the UK, they come in a range of scales and cover the entire United Kingdom. Smaller merchants may only offer maps for local areas. The ‘WH Smiths’ and ‘Waterstones’ chains of stores normally contain the whole range of UK maps, whereas smaller retailers may only have maps for local areas.
From the flat regions of the Fens and East Anglia to the mountainous and hilly sections of the Lake District, the Pennines, the Dales, Brecon Beacons, North Wales, and Scotland’s Highlands, a tour of the United Kingdom can be an incredibly diverse and memorable experience. You’ll need the right gear for your bicycle depending on where in the UK you’ll be visiting since most of the major, local highways have tarmac surfaces. In the UK, mountain bike trails are available in the main forest areas and green lanes and bridleways provide access to rural areas.
Finding a shop open until late is usually not a problem in the UK. Some of the biggest grocery chains are available 24 hours on most weekdays and Saturdays, indicating that the country has long operating hours. However, due to Sunday trading restrictions, they will only be open from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Many larger gas stations now have a small shop or supermarket connected, where you can usually stock up on your favourite essential groceries.
Taking your bike on UK trains is rarely a problem because most rail companies accept them and the country no longer has a nationalised rail network. However, depending on the regional operators, the services provided to transport bikes will vary. Bicycle carriage is charged by some train companies, while it is free for others. One thing is certain: there are always a limited number of spots available, so it is best to reserve ahead during the summer months.
Must-know Details Before Setting Out For A Cycle Tour In The UK
In the United Kingdom, locals understand that the law requires them to drive and ride on the left side of the road. However, on a few occasions, a handful of tourers were caught off guard as they exited the Scrabster ferry. Listed below are some things to look out for as per the country’s law:
- Since all land in England and Wales is privately owned, wild camping is theoretically banned. Before camping on any land or field, you must first obtain permission from the landlord. There are many access rights throughout Scotland, and wild camping is permitted.
- Anyone utilising a road between sunset and sunrise in the United Kingdom is required to have a white forward-facing light, a rear red light, and a rear red reflector.
- Riding on the pavement is theoretically unlawful in the UK unless it is authorised as a shared cycling lane or path. If you’re unsure if it’s a cycle route, stay on the road.
For anyone new to the whole cycle touring experience, the UK is one of the best places to get your feet wet. With so many bicycle paths, you won’t have to deal with traffic much of the time. However, remember to prepare yourself with the right gear if you plan to travel through the colder and wet months around December to March. Cycling along some of the tucked away routes in the UK will provide a powerful reminder of the country’s natural splendour.