Cycling in North Wales

August 1, 2022
Tim Coysh

Cycling in North Wales is a past time for all to enjoy

North Wales offers some of the best cycling in the UK, drawing tens of thousands of cyclists and mountain bikers there each week. Cycling in this area is popular amongst all levels and age groups and even the cyclist looking for a challenge will find the difficult climbs, interesting singletracks, and swooping descents to their liking and it will take them through some breath-taking panoramic views across mountains, lakes, woods, and valleys.

couple cycling in the woods

Most of us start riding bikes when we are very young, but how many of us keep it up as we get older? And no matter how old we get; we never lose the ability to ride a bike. Cycling was still a well-liked form of transportation in the 1950s and 1960s when there were a lot fewer cars on the road. The school run’ was unheard of; children would happily ride their bikes to school and back each day.  As we moved into the 70s and ’80s the car became a more important mode of travel; consequently, the roads got busier, and cycling became less popular as people began enjoying the comforts and convenience of using a motorcar.

Sometime in the mid-nineties, as energy costs began to rise, cycling started to slowly regain its popularity. Since then, it seems that nothing can stop the cycling revolution!  Currently, it is estimated that the number of people participating in cycling is around 6.5 million people.

It seems that over the last few years cycling has become almost a mainstream sport in the UK.  In 2012, possibly one of the greatest milestones in British cycling was achieved when Sir Bradley Wiggins became the first British cyclist to win the ‘Tour de France’. If that wasn’t enough his teammate at Sky, Chris Froome won it the following year in 2013.

In July 2014, the Tour de France came back to Britain for the first time since 2007. It was estimated that 1 million people lined the roads to watch the event over the 3 days it was here.

mountain biker cycling down a hill over tough terrain


In September last year in North Wales, we had a stage of the Tour of Britain racing around this beautiful part of the UK. The route was Aberaeron to Great Orme (Llandudno) and was the 3rd stage of 8, finishing in Aberdeen

Of course, it’s not just the professional road cyclists that get to cycle around North Wales! That’s one of the great things about cycling – anyone can do it!

Road cycling in North Wales has so much to offer. Most of the roads in the region are largely traffic free, so great for cycling and safer than other parts of the country. Pick the right time of year, and you can find yourself cycling and realise a car hasn’t passed you for nearly 10 minutes – that’s unusual in the UK unless you are in some remote parts of Scotland!

It’s a great place to visit and cycle because of how diverse the terrain is. There are quiet country lanes weaving in and out of small country villages where you can stop off for refreshments when your legs need a break!   Snowdonia has of course got the classic mountain pass climbs, some are more challenging than others, but when you finally get yourself to the top you will be rewarded with spectacular views!  When you come out of the mountains, you can head for the coast and cycle along the peaceful coastal roads that weave their way around headlands and into quiet small fishing villages.

snowdonia mountains view over a lake

Whether you come to North Wales to cycle 10 miles or do something more ambitious, you will be rewarded with a memorable experience, and go home feeling mentally and physically refreshed, not to mention, a few pounds lighter!




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