If you want to set off on a bike journey either solo or as a family, you won’t be short of bike trails to choose from. The UK is abundant in tracks for people of all abilities, and you’re just one Google search away from finding them.
Nevertheless, if you’re looking for something more exciting and less familiar, this guide will help you find the top secret treasure biking trails to try out in 2022.
Leisure Lakes Bikes, the UK retailer of road, mountain, and electric bikes, has compiled a guide with the top 16 secret treasure trails based on TripAdvisor’s Hidden Gem Biking Trails data as of October 2022.
The data takes into account TripAdvisor traveller favourites, TripAdvisor traveller ranking reviews, average Google search volumes, three-month change in search volume, year-on-year change, and Instagram posts for the trail hashtags. The BrakeAway Bike Tours featured in the list were excluded from the data.
The top three hidden gem biking trails are Grizedale Forest, Tissington Trail, and Tarka Trail. What can you find on those trails?
Grizedale Forest is not just a biking trail, it’s a state-of-the-art voyage through breathtaking views and stunning artwork. Located in the Lake District, it overlooks two stunning lakes, Coniston Water and Lake Windermere. Due to the high elevation, views over Helvellyn and beyond are opening up for the riders.
Grizedale Forest is also famous for its outdoor sculptures, which have been created since 1977 by renowned international artists. The forest is the perfect spot for next-generation artists to explore site-specific sculptures in collaboration with Forestry England.
The sculptures can be viewed by cyclists and visitors from the multitude of trails, tailored for people of all abilities. The North Face Trail is ideal for intermediate riders, while the black and the double-black-diamond are for advanced cyclists. Adventure riders can also benefit from Parkamoor – a part of a network of bridleways that provide exhilarating natural riding.
With such a variety of trails, views, and artistry, Grizedale Forest is a hidden gem that is steadily growing in the hearts of cyclists. It has 973 TripAdvisor traveller ratings and 12,100 Google Search volumes and is a definite winner.
Tissington Trail follows the route of an old railway line that was closed in 1967 and reopened as the trail in 1971. It is 13 miles long and runs from the city of Ashbourne through to Parsley Hall.
Across the plateau of the white peak, this is one of the earliest and most picturesque railway routes. It covers the sensational views of the Derbyshire Dales and the small Tissington village, hence the trail’s name. Mainly traffic-free and flat with an elevation gain of 305m, the route is perfect for an easygoing family trip or a solo self-discovery journey in nature.
It comes as no surprise that the trail generates 12,100 Google Search volumes, the same as Grizedale Forest, and is second on the list.
Tarka Trail follows the route travelled by the fictional character Tarka the Otter from Henry Williamson’s eponymous book around North Devon, hence its name. The trail spans across 180 miles forming a figure-of-eight and stretching across scenic views: pictorial countryside, old railway tracks, dazzling sea cliffs, and vast beaches. The views are definitely worth a photo, and the 16,500 Instagram posts, most of all the trails on the list, prove it.
The longest, continuous off-road cycle route in the UK that’s traffic-free and friendly for cyclists of all abilities is featured in the southern loop. That makes the Tarka Trail the favourite route of TripAdvisor travellers.
Bike journeys are all about having fun and enjoying the magnetising views, whether on your own or in good company. Add these hidden gem biking trails to your list and enjoy a day or a weekend of goodness in the woods.