It’s widely known that there are many great things about Yorkshire. Not only does the world’s greatest tea come from the county, but this grand place is also birthplace to on-screen legend Sean Bean, the world’s first ever football club (Sheffield FC) and of course, the fabulous Yorkshire pudding!
What’s more, the county has developed a love for cycling following the significant success of the visit of the 2014 Tour de France, where the early race stages, known as the Grand Départ, were held in Yorkshire. Nicknamed Le Tour de Yorkshire, the race kicked off in Leeds and then carried on through to Harrogate, York and Sheffield before continuing the race over on the European continent.
Following the positive impact it had on the region, organisers were determined to make the Tour de Yorkshire a permanent fixture as part of the professional European cycling tour and they managed to do just that! 2018 sees the race coming into its fourth edition as it travels across the UK’s largest county from Beverley to Leeds.
So, as the professionals whiz past the spectator-lined streets over the next couple of days, it’ll no doubt encourage people to open their sheds and dust off their bikes as they head for the nearest cycle route. But where are the best rides throughout God’s own county? Don’t worry, we’re on hand to let you guys know the five best rides in Yorkshire!
Scarborough to Bridlington
Starting on’t seaside, this beautiful route begins and ends at two of the county’s most celebrated coastal hotspots. This 22-mile ride takes riders south along the coast, passing through the villages of Hunmanby and Bempton, before passing by Sewerby Hall and Gardens, which sits 2 miles outside of Bridlington. As expected, this is a very scenic but challenging route, as it follows the rugged East Yorkshire coastline.
Leeds to Skipton
This 29 mile route begins in the urban playground of Leeds city centre, as it follows the Leeds and Liverpool Canal towards the market town of Skipton passing through the villages of Calverley and Haworth – known as the home of the Brontë sisters. However, before arriving in Skipton, you’ll get to breeze through the city of Bradford and all of its delights on this mostly traffic-free route.
York Solar Cycle Path
This rather unique route is a 6.4 mile stretch which is spread out along the old East Coast railway line. Along the York to Selby based route, riders can find scale models of all the planets in our solar system as each 100 metres represents 57 million km in space. And with no traffic to worry about, we’re sure that this route will provide you with all the space you’ll need!
Aire Valley Towpath
If there was ever a cycling route to define Yorkshire, this is it. Mixing thriving urban areas and unspoilt countryside, this route again follows the Leeds and Liverpool Canal for 17 miles from Leeds city centre to the market town of Bingley. What’s more, this route passes through the historic Kirkstall Abbey and Saltaire, a world heritage site – so there’ll certainly be plenty to look at when you’re pedalling on this smooth route.
Yorkshire Dales Cycleway
Now this one is reserved for the more experienced cyclists amongst us! This epic 130 mile ride takes you through the Yorkshire Dales National Park, as it both starts and finishes back in the market town of Skipton. Despite being one the most challenging routes in Yorkshire, this cycleway provides some of the most breathtaking views, for sure. If you’re up for a challenge, then this is the route for you.
So there we have it, five of the most diverse routes which you can try out over this vast county. If you’re unfortunate enough not to live in Yorkshire for yourself, then you can catch all of the Tour de Yorkshire action on ITV4 from 3rd – 6th May or you can experience some two-wheeled action first hand with our selection of Mountain Biking experiences.