Cycling on the Isle of Wight

Cycling on the Isle of Wight

Cycling

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One of the best ways to explore the South East of England is by bicycle. Not only do you get to experience the beautiful cities, coastal scenery and countryside first hand, but you get to enjoy some wonderful fresh air and healthy exercise, as well as helping the environment at the same time. Now more than ever, taking to two wheels is a great way to explore our landscapes.

The network of traffic free cycle paths, bridleways and quiet country lanes all contribute to literally 100s of miles of great cycling routes across South East England. And there are plenty of guilt-free pub stops thrown in too!

For families wanting a quiet day out with the children, the traffic free cycle routes provide a safe haven for youngsters just learning to ride, whilst the roads that hosted the Olympic althetes back in the summer of 2012 and the hilly off road routes across the South Downs a great challenge for the experienced rider.

Here are some of South East England's two wheeled highlights for your to explore -

The ride through Windsor Great Park, Berkshire has the added bonus of spectacular views of Windsor Castle.  With its 17 miles of smooth roads and paths there are plenty of routes to discover for all abilities. Click here for the map of permitted routes.

Why not try Cuckoo Trail from Polegate to Heathfield in 1066 Country being mainly off-road it is suitable and safe for people of all ages and abilities.  Or try the longer Rye to Winchelsea 20 mile circular route if you want more of a challenge.

The (nearly) traffic free Red Squirrel trail from East Cowes to Sandown and Shanklin on the Isle of Wight provides a great way to explore the island starting from where you disembark the Red Funnel ferry. Or for those looking for more of a challenge why not try the full round the island cycle route - 65 miles of stunning coastal scenery and a few hills along the way.

For the off road enthusiast the South Downs Way National Park, linking the 100 miles from Winchester to Eastbourne on the south coast, provides a more than challenging ride, download the mountain bike guide before you begin.

For some history, take the Tudor Trail from Tonbridge to Penshurst Place in Kent.

Head to Alice Holt Forest, Farnham in Hampshire with their family friendly 3 mile cycle trail its a great place to build skills and confidence.

Heading out and about in West Sussex, try the unique West Sussex County Council journey planner, click your starting point, end point and it will give you three different routes to follow, quietest, fastest or balanced.  Try from Bognor Regis to Littlehampton for starters.

Alternatively, why not experience the New Forest National Park with its unique landscape that has been shaped over the centuries by grazing ponies, cattle and pigs which roam free. The New Forest has a wealth of cycle routes for all ages and abilities and free parking nearby.

If you fancy half a day or a day away amongst incredible scenery, traditional English villages, historical sites, hidden valleys, woodlands and heaths then let The Surrey Explorer take you on one of his many all inclusive guided bike tours in the Surrey Hills AONB. Bikes, helmets, water and snacks will be provided so all you need to do is turn up.

The Countryside CodeWe encourage you to enjoy the countryside at every opportunity, it is so good for our well being. However, whilst you are out and about remember to follow the Countryside Code.  RESPECT - PROTECT - ENJOY. This code contains advice for the public and landowners, making it easier for visitors to help respect, protect and enjoy the outdoors. 

There is plenty of urban help out there if you are looking to cycle around your town or city.  Take a look at the Portsmouth cycle map showing low traffic roads in the city.  Many major towns and cities have these available to help make your two wheeled adventures as safe and enjoyable as possible.  Use our stay local, support local page to link to the offical destination website within your area.

Cycle Hire

For best results, contact one of the cycle touring companies below and they will give expert advice on the routes most suited to you. Maps, locks and helmets are usually provided.

  • Forest Leisure Cycling, New Forest
    Ideally located in the heart of the New Forest, choose from nine cycle routes including an old railway, deer sanctuary and woodland trails with cream teas a-plenty.
     
  • UK Electric Bike Tours & Hire, Kent
    Enjoy self guided or scheduled tours. The electric bikes are comfortable, reliabile and have a large battery range so suitable for all fitness levels.

Cycling Tours

Embrace the South East in an active way with a cycling tour.  Whether travelling alone or in a couple or family your find some great tours around Oxford and the Cotswolds.

Best places to go cycling

From country parks to waymarked trails, take a look at some of the best locations for cycling in the south of England and see what's near you for a holiday or day out.

Number of results:

Number of results: 13

  1. Bedgebury National Pinetum & Forest

    Type

    Type:

    Forest

    CRANBROOK

    The National Pinetum is a world-class collection of dramatic conifers and a beautiful setting for a country walk in all seasons.

  2. Staunton Country Park

    Type

    Type:

    Country / Royal Park

    Havant

    Discover tropical glasshouses, gardens, friendly farm animals and 1000 acres of parkland with follies. Walks and cycle trails, all in Sir George Staunton's 19thC Regency landscape.

  3. Riverside Country Park

    Type

    Type:

    Country / Royal Park

    Gillingham

    Riverside Country Park is an excellent site for Winter birdwatching.
    Situated alongside the Medway Estuary at Gillingham, the park is made up of many different habitats, including ponds, reedbed and grassland.

  4. Capstone Farm Country Park

    Type

    Type:

    Country / Royal Park

    Gillingham

    Capstone Farm Country Park is one of Medway's finest green spaces, offering wonderful opportunities for walking, running, cycling and more in 114 hectares of former farmland on the North Downs.

  5. South Downs National Park

    Type

    Type:

    National Park

    The South Downs, now a newly designated National Park are accessible from Worthing. The South Downs Way runs from Winchester to Eastbourne and can be accessed at several points around Worthing or Adur.

  6. The Cuckoo Trail

    Type

    Type:

    Nature Trail / Watching

    Polegate

    The Cuckoo Trail is 11 miles long joining three of the district’s towns, Heathfield, Hailsham and Polegate. It also passes through the villages of Horam and Hellingly.

  7. Queen Elizabeth Country Park

    Type

    Type:

    Country / Royal Park

    Horndean

    With over 2,000 acres of downland and woodland, Queen Elizabeth Country Park is the ideal place to explore, keep fit and enjoy the great outdoors.

  8. Royal Military Canal

    Type

    Type:

    Waymarked Trail

    RYE

    The scenic route this canal takes is perfect for walking and cycling. Dug by hand in the early 19th century, the canal was designed as a defence barrier on the low-lying land between Winchelsea and Hythe.

  9. Yateley Common Country Park

    Type

    Type:

    Country / Royal Park

    Yateley

    476 acres of heathland, woodland, grassland and ponds providing walking, cycling and fishing in natural surroundings.

  10. Alice Holt Forest

    Type

    Type:

    Country / Royal Park

    Farnham

    Once famous for its oak trees which supplied timber for navy ships, Alice Holt is managed by the Forestry Commission and is a centre for a host of exciting outdoor activities in a beautiful woodland setting.

  11. UK Electric Bike Tours and Hire

    Type

    Type:

    Sightseeing

    Biddenden, Ashford

    UK Electric Bike Tours run scheduled and bespoke electric bike tours in and around Kent. We also hire out electric bikes and help to advise you where to go and what to see.

  12. Forest Leisure Cycling

    Type

    Type:

    Waymarked Trail

    Ringwood

    New Forest Cycle hire, from our brand new Cycle Centre, located close to the trails!

  13. River Adur - Coastal Link & Sculpture Trail

    Type

    Type:

    Natural Feature

    Shoreham-by-Sea

    The River Adur, an important trade route since Roman times, derives its name from the Celtic word 'Dwyr', meaning 'water'. It gives its name to the Adur District dividing it roughly in half.

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