Top ten off-road routes

For those who want adventure and the thrill of rugged landscapes, off-road cycling offers an unparalleled experience

Whether you're a seasoned cyclist looking to conquer challenging terrains or a novice eager to explore nature on two wheels, the UK is dotted with exhilarating off-road routes waiting to be discovered.

We've compiled the top ten off-road cycle routes that promise breath-taking scenery, adrenaline-pumping trails, and unforgettable journeys.

Get ready to embark on some of the most exciting cycling adventures the great outdoors has to offer.

Great North Trail

The Great north trail is an 800-mile off-road adventure that goes from the Peak District to Cape Wrath or John o' Groats. However, you don’t have to try and complete the full route as one journey; the Great North Trail is broken up into nine sections ranging from 52 miles to 162 miles. Each section offers its own unique views of Britain, from rolling hills and dales to remote windswept moorland, crumbling castles to hidden waterfalls, swooping singletrack and old Roman roads, and everything in between. 

The terrain for the route changes from section to section – from rugged upland trails across exposed moorland, suitable for more experienced mountain bikers, to sections of canal path and disused railway perfect for family days out.

So whether it’s an epic long-distance challenge, a weekend away, or a fantastic day out, the Great North Trail will offer you a fantastic adventure.

Cantii Way

The Cantii Way offers a scenic 147-mile loop through the Kent countryside, providing a perfect blend of historical exploration and natural beauty. 

Named after the ancient Celtic tribe that once inhabited this area, the route takes cyclists off-road through the lush landscapes of the North Downs, expansive woodlands, and charming villages. Highlights include the iconic White Cliffs of Dover and Canterbury Cathedral. 

With a variety of terrain from gravel paths to forest trails, the Cantii Way is ideal for cyclists seeking a diverse and picturesque off-road adventure.

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South Downs Way

The South Downs Way is a classic 100-mile route stretching from Winchester to Eastbourne, traversing the stunning South Downs National Park. 

This trail is renowned for its rolling chalk hills, panoramic views, and historical landmarks. Cyclists will enjoy the uninterrupted off-road paths that wind through ancient woodlands, over hilltops, and past charming English villages. 

The South Downs Way is perfect for those looking to immerse themselves in the natural beauty and rich history of southern England, offering a challenging yet rewarding off-road cycling experience.

Traws Eryri

Traws Eryri, meaning "Trans Snowdonia" in Welsh, is a breath-taking 122-mile off-road route that spans the rugged landscapes of Eryri National Park. 

This off-road adventure takes cyclists through some of Wales' most dramatic scenery, including towering mountains, serene lakes, and dense forests. The route's challenging terrain and spectacular vistas make it a favourite among experienced cyclists

Traws Eryri is perfect for those seeking a truly epic off-road journey through one of Britain's most stunning national parks.

North Downs Way

The North Downs Way offers a unique 153-mile trail from Farnham to Dover, encompassing the natural beauty and historical intrigue of southern England. 

This off-road route follows ancient footpaths and bridleways, providing cyclists with a mix of woodland trails, open fields, and chalk downs. Highlights include Box Hill, the historic Pilgrims' Way and the serene countryside of the Kent Downs. 

The North Downs Way is ideal for cyclists looking to explore the picturesque landscapes and historical sites of the southeast, all while enjoying a predominantly off-road experience.


King Alfred's Way

King Alfred's Way is a 220-mile circular route that immerses cyclists in the history and diverse landscapes of southern England. 

Named after Alfred the Great, who ruled the Anglo-Saxon kingdom of Wessex, the trail starts and ends at King Alfred’s statue in Winchester. This off-road loop trail connects iconic landmarks such as Stonehenge, Winchester and the Ridgeway. 

The route offers a mix of gravel tracks, woodland and heathland trails, grassy field edge bridleways and canal towpaths; providing a varied and engaging ride. 

Cyclists will encounter historical sites, rolling hills, and charming villages, making King Alfred's Way a captivating journey through England's past and present.

Rebellion Way

The Rebellion Way is a 232-mile adventure through the scenic and historical landscapes of East Anglia. 

This off-road route celebrates the region's rebellious spirit, taking cyclists along a mix of quiet, mostly flat backroads, byways, cycle paths and bridleways under huge panoramic skies.

The Rebellion Way offers a diverse and picturesque off-road experience, perfect for those looking to explore the unique charm and beauty of East Anglia.

West Kernow Way

The West Kernow Way is a 148-mile loop around the rugged and beautiful landscapes of Cornwall. 

This off-road route takes cyclists through dramatic coastal cliffs, quaint fishing villages, and historic mining sites. Highlights include the stunning beaches of the Cornish coast, Land's End and the serene beauty of Bodmin Moor. 

With its challenging terrain and breath-taking scenery, the West Kernow Way is ideal for adventurous cyclists seeking to explore the wild and captivating landscapes of Cornwall.


Cape Wrath

The Cape Wrath route offers a remote and exhilarating 83-mile cycling experience in the far northwest of Scotland. 

This off-road adventure takes cyclists through some of the most rugged and untouched landscapes in the UK, including dramatic coastlines, moorlands, and mountains. 

The Cape Wrath route is perfect for experienced cyclists looking for a truly wild and unforgettable off-road journey.

Elan Valley Loop

The Elan Valley Loop is a picturesque 53-mile route through the heart of Wales, known for its stunning reservoirs, rolling hills, and lush woodlands. 

This off-road trail takes cyclists around the beautiful Elan Valley, offering breath-taking views and a serene cycling experience. Highlights include the impressive Victorian dams, the tranquil Elan River and the diverse wildlife of the region. 

The Elan Valley Loop is ideal for cyclists of all levels looking to enjoy the natural beauty and tranquillity of this scenic Welsh landscape.