Rebellion Way

Two people cycle across a wooden bridge with a ruined abbey peeking through the trees behind
Follow in the chariot tracks of the trailblazing warrior queen Boudicca on this bikepacking trail around Norfolk

Discover Norfolk’s hidden stories

The Rebellion Way is a 232-mile/373km cycling adventure around Norfolk. Meandering along a mix of quiet, mostly flat back roads, byways, cycle paths and bridleways under huge panoramic skies, it’s a fantastic introduction to multi-day, on- and off-road adventuring for anyone.

The name comes from the fact that, while this ancient county is now characterised by a relaxed, timeless, pastoral charm, it has a fascinatingly turbulent history from the Iron Age onwards. Exploring the stories, ancient sites, stunning vistas and thriving wildlife of this unique area enriches every mile of this leisurely but rewarding loop.

This long-distance route forms part of the European Regional Development Fund EXPERIENCE project, which aims to develop sustainable off-season tourism activities across six regions in England and France. As part of the project, Cycling UK will also be supporting hospitality businesses along the route to become accredited Cycle Friendly Places, so you know you will be greeted with a warm welcome and everything you need.

What’s in a name?

The route takes its name from two of Norfolk’s most fascinating rebellions: those of warrior queen Boudicca and Norfolk landowner Robert Kett.

Boudicca has been a famous cultural symbol since she led a revolt against Roman rule almost 2,000 years ago. Heading out of Norwich, the Rebellion Way passes by Venta Icenorum, the capital of Boudicca’s Iceni tribe, where you can see remains of the settlement to this day. The route also takes in sections of the Boudicca Way, where it is accessible by cycle.

On the return leg, the route passes Kett’s Heights, a key location in Kett’s Rebellion. This was a revolt in Norfolk in response to land enclosure. Beginning in Wymondham in July 1549, rebels began to destroy fences placed by wealthy landowners. The group targeted Robert Kett who, instead of fighting the rebels, joined their cause and offered to lead them. The rebellion grew to number 10,000 who marched on Norwich, later storming and taking the city.

Rebellion Way Route Guide Book

The comprehensive route guide is written by archeologist-turned-MTB-writer Guy Kesteven, and will open your eyes to the rich history and stories of the landscapes you’ll journey through.

The guide also includes practical advice and suggested itineraries to help you plan your trip, and detailed maps showing optional detours to make the most of your ride.

View the digital guide

Experience more of Norfolk by bike

Norfolk is sometimes overlooked as a choice for a cycling trip, but once you start exploring, this big-sky county is full of surprises.

A spin along the tranquil lanes reveals quaint timeless villages, peaceful wildlife havens and buckets of quirky charm, from prehistoric mammoths to steam railways.

You’ll find medieval churches full of original carvings and paintings, or ancient barns that are now bat sanctuaries. Glide through the gently rolling, minimal traffic ‘Quiet Lanes’, follow single-track paths through timeless woods, stop to watch swans on secret inland lakes, or ride alongside deer in the evening sun.

As part of the European Regional Development Fund EXPERIENCE project, Cycling UK is developing promoted routes starting from several locations across Norfolk which showcase the varied riding in the area. We’re supporting businesses to become accredited Cycle Friendly Places, so you know you’ll have great options for places to eat and stay.

These cycle-friendly hubs are great bases for a visit

Discover more of Norfolk by exploring our six cycling destinations.

You could link up a whole string of grand stately homes, take in the salty sea air or enjoy the woods filled with birds and the big-sky landscapes, free from the usual troubles of traffic or tiring hills.

We’ve aimed to keep our suggested day routes to a leisurely distance, but there’s potential to expand each one to take in even more treasures of the county.

When you’re done exploring for the day, you can choose from an eclectic mix of places to stay: from campsites to youth hostels or hotels where aristocrats and royalty once stayed.

Donate or become a member to help open up new inspirational cycling routes

Developing new off-road routes like Rebellion Way is only possible thanks to the generosity of our members and supporters. By signing up for membership or donating, you help us bring new routes to you, increase transport choice for people, boost the number and diversity of people cycling, and campaign to make cycling an even more positive experience. Together, we can make a cycle friendly future.