Are these the 7 best biking routes in Britain?

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Published on 5 June 2015 by Gill

The Northern Irish coast is home to the best biking route in Britain after the public voted from a shortlist created by biking legend Steve Parrish.

Express Insurance, with the help of Goodwood Revival and the Ministry of Bikes launched a competition earlier this year to find the ultimate biking routes in the UK.

The guest judge whittled down a mass of stunning route submissions to a shortlist of seven regional winners, from which the public decided the nation’s best trail. Congratulations goes to Gail Jeffreys, whose coastal trek in Northern Ireland came out on top, pipping some amazing journeys in Scotland, Wales and England to the crown.

The top three routes in the UK, as submitted by riders, are:

  1. ‘Stunning Coastal Route’, Northern Ireland. This 51 mile route from Larne on the east coast up to Dunseverick hugs tightly to the sea, at some points presenting a danger of being sprayed by the waves. The ride ends at the Giant’s Causeway, where you can look down from the cliff top to watch the evening sunset. A worthy winner.
  2. ‘Max Point West’, Scotland. Starting at Fort William in the shadow of Ben Nevis, this 73.6 mile route heads west to the coast before veering south past Loch Sunart and finishing at Ardnamurchan Lighthouse.
  3. ‘One Way, The Whole Way’, The Midlands. CaldwellPark circuit in Lincolnshire is well worth a try for anybody looking for some track experience. The 2.17 mile stretch is free of any other traffic, ideal for those looking for a safe racing environment.

The other regional winners making up the top seven routes (in no particular order) in the UK include:

  • ‘Ride out’, The North. 47.3 miles from Alderley Edge to Matlock Bath, a haven for bikers with 8,000-10,000 using the spa town on bank holiday weekends. This route negotiates the Cat & Fiddle, one of the UK’s most dangerous roads.
  • ‘Run to the Sun’, The South East. 53 miles from Pratt’s Bottom inside the M25 down to Lewes, and another 10 miles onto Brighton for those wanting to finish on the coast. The A275 to Lewes is a particular highlight, sweeping through the countryside.
  • ‘The Old A361 Somerset/Devon Run’, The South West. Starting in Street and finishing at South Molton, this 56.7 mile route is best ridden on a Sunday morning when traffic is at its lightest.
  • ‘Mountains, Moors and Maritime’, Wales. This circular route starts and ends in Conwy on the north coast, venturing south through the picturesque village of Betys-Y-Coed and back up past Llandudno, riding along the stunning limestone cliffs. 55.7 miles in total.

Commenting in his blog post about the competition, Steve Parrish explained how he came to make the final shortlist: “Judging the best routes was a little trickier than I’d first anticipated as most had different things to offer the rider and were pretty subjective; so I went on the description given, a bit of research of the areas and my imagination.”

More from Steve can be found at: www.expressinsurance.co.uk/bikers-guide/steve-parrish

Details of all seven routes can be found here, why not try one of them yourself this summer!