6 of the Best Family Friendly Cycle Routes in Yorkshire.
As it's Yorkshire Day we thought it would be nice to share some of the best traffic free cycling routes we have enjoyed in Yorkshire. We've cycled all of these with our children over the years and we consider these to be worthy of adding to your bucket list. The best family activities require you to roll your sleeves up and get stuck in and sometimes, to be honest, some activities require a bit of effort on my part. However, I am always more than happy to find my inner child and fly along a cycle path enjoying a little bit of speed with the wind in my hair and my kids chasing after me. Two wheels just allow you to explore the great outdoors at an ideal pace and, for me, its just the best way to travel. If you don’t have a bike yet we’ve included local bike hire places and most of them offer ebikes now, so you don't need to be super fit to cycle. If you want a great fun half day adventure pick a route and give one of these family friendly cycle routes a go today.
1. The Cinder Track
From: Whitby to Scarborough
Length: 21 miles
Route: 100% traffic free route except a couple of small road crossings.
Highlights: Coastal views and perfect places to stop off for lunch and to explore like Robin Hood’s Bay.
Bike Hire: Bayhire in Scarborough and if you are feeling confident (or you’ve hired e-bikes) you could cycle the entire 21 mile track. Park at Scarborough, cycle to Whitby and arrange for Bayhire to transfer you and your bikes back to your car at Scarborough.
2. The Solar System at York
From: York City Centre to Selby
Length: 14.2 miles
Route: 75% traffic free. Mainly disused railway line and quiet country roads
Highlights: The Solar System section which is a 6.4 mile section with scaled down versions of the planets at intervals along the route. If you have your own bikes you can drive and park at Riccall and start at Pluto and cycle to the Sun and back.
Bike Hire: Get Cycling near the Millennium bridge will hire bikes for a full or half day at very reasonable rates. It’s very flat so we don’t think you’ll be needing e-bikes.
3. Nidderdale Greenway
From: Ripley to Harrogate
Length: 4.2 miles
Route: A disused railway line that has been resurfaced
Highlights: The viaduct over Nidd Gorge and Ripley Castle.
Bike Hire: Nidderdale Cycle Hire near Summer Bridge. You would need to cycle an extra 4 miles along some quiet country roads to get to the start at Ripley, but this would add the adventure for older children.
4. Wetherby Railway Path
From: Spofforth to Thorp Arch
Length: 6.3 miles
Route: 88% traffic free but does include one road crossing
Highlights: Spofforth Castle and Wetherby. If you are hiring bikes set off at Thorp Arch.
Bike Hire: Cycle Sense Bike Hire Bike hire is available at our Thorp Arch warehouse. For more info call 01937 844-068.
5. Spen Valley Greenway
From: Cleckheaton to Bradford
Length: 8 miles
Route: The Spen Valley Greenway 8-mile route follows a converted railway line and is the ideal route for the leisure cycling user. The cycle path is entirely traffic-free with a slight decline and links two of West Yorkshire's major towns (Bradford and Dewsbury). This is one of the most popular cycle routes in the country for leisure cycling.
Highlights: Artwork along the trail to spot.
Bike Hire: No bike hire places on route, so currently you would need your own bikes for this route.
6. Leeds Liverpool Canal
From: Leeds to Liverpool
Length: 127 miles
Route: 100% traffic free with large sections re-surfacted.
Highlights: Leeds City Waterfront, Liverpool’s Royal Albert Docks, Saltaire’s world Heritage Site and Bingley five rise locks. Plan a few of overnight stops and cycle the entire length of the canal if older children want a challenge.
Bike Hire: Riverside Bikes at Apperley Bridge have bike hire, bike repairs and a bike friendly café.
You can access The Cinder Track from Sea Fern Cottage and we have secure bike storage, cleaning facilities, route maps & a tool kit, so that you can book your family cycling holiday with confidence.