Biking is one of life’s simplest pleasures: not only is it good exercise and will make you feel better physically and mentally, it’s also easy to just grab your bike and start pedalling around the world’s best mountain bike routes and beyond.
While cycling around your local park or city is aways nice, there’s an appeal to going further afield if you’re a keen biker. Cycling allows you to see some of the best scenery in the world without having to go on a massive hike or worrying about stones in your shoes. With this idea in mind, we’ve made a list of some of the most scenic places to go biking in the world, from mountain bike routes to seaside views.
The Great Divide, Canada
Biking along the Great Divide Trail in Canada will allow you to take in some of the most spectacular scenery the country (and the world) has to offer. Home to the longest off-pavement bike route on earth, you’ll see magnificent views of the famed Rocky Mountains, along with a diverse array of wildlife, like deer, eagles, wild horses and even the odd bear. Not only that, but the route is close to and in some cases goes through five Canadian national parks: Waterton Lakes, Banff, Kootenay, Yoho and Jasper. The route is absolutely packed with things to see, and is an excellent place to go on a biking holiday.
The Great Ocean Road, Australia
Moving across the pacific to Australia, The Great Ocean Road offers exactly the kind of scenery you’d expect from such a name: incredible views of the ocean and beaches of Australia’s south eastern coast. The route is probably best for those who are fairly adept at cycling, given its length and the fact it is a main road used by cars, but it’s still certainly worth a bike ride if you’re up for it. It’s easy to get lost staring into the beautiful blue water, so make sure you keep your eyes on the road between glances!
Col de la Loze, France
If you’ve ever watched the Tour De France on TV and thought “I wish I could ride a bike through some of that incredible scenery”, Col de la Loze may be of interest to you. Featuring prominently in the 2020 edition of the Tour, Col de la Loze takes you steadily up into the Alps, and toward the top of the route there’s a bikes only path that’ll take you over 2300 km high up. Again, a fair challenge awaits along with the stunning views, but this is a chance to see some of France’s most breathtaking countryside.
Friendship Highway, China
A very welcoming sounding route, Friendship Highway in China is one of the best ways to see Everest without actually climbing it- with the elevation allowing you take in the views of Himalayas, particularly on clear days. It passes through the Tibetan city of Lhasa, and ends up at the Nepalese border, lasting for around 500 miles- so it’s certainly a distance, but it’ll provide a huge sense of liberation and openness.
Bolivia Salt Flats, Bolivia
One of the most unique areas to bike on this list, the salt flats in Bolivia will take several days to navigate across fully, but they will prove to be a truly unforgettable experience. With the dazzling, reflective sheen of the surface of the flats beneath you, you’ll feel like you’re in some kind of dreamy fantastical track on Mario Kart rather than real life- but that’s precisely what makes the flats so appealing in Bolivia’s winter months.
Forest of Dean, England
This certainly isn’t as long or as exotic as some of the others on the list, but a journey through the Forest of Dean, while likely short, will still sate your appetite for a lovely bike ride. Lose yourself amongst the forest’s many trees as you cycle through any of the three main routes here- though note that the family trail is significantly more leisurely than the demanding and tricky Freeminer’s trail. A bike ride here will whisk you away into idyllic green bliss with some of the best scenery Britain has to offer.
Swamp Rabbit Trail, South Carolina
Another beautiful forest bike route, the Swamp Rabbit Trail in Greenville South Carolina is a great place to unwind as you cycle away through some of the best scenery in the state. It’s 22 miles long, and travels alongside the Reedy River and several of Greenville’s city parks. There’s waterfalls, brightly coloured leaves and small bridges that all come together to create a nicely serene and pleasurable atmosphere. If you’re looking for somewhere to bike on holiday in America that isn’t too challenging, the Swamp Rabbit Trail is a great choice.
Lake Constance Cycle Path, Germany, Switzerland & Austria
One of the most popular bike trails in Europe, the path around Lake Constance allows you to cycle away at your own pace and leisure, with the lake providing an incredible, beautiful backdrop to your journey. The full route is 270 km long, and goes through Germany, Switzerland and Austria on the way. There’s plenty of variety too, with towns, tourist attractions and other magnificent scenery creating an almost stereotypical sense of being in Europe. If you’re a biking enthusiast, or even if you’re just intrigued by the idea of a grand bike ride, the Lake Constance path might be the easiest to recommend on this list for how much it offers.
Are you a keen cycler? Try out one of these cycling apps on your next ride out