Published: 05/07/2020Reservoirs, canals, and a plethora of parks, make cycling in London an absolute delight. From Richmond Park to Hampstead Heath, it's easy to get out for a spin and find yourself in surprisingly wild places.
Here's our pick of the best:
Battersea Park to Greenwich
Medium Difficulty - 16 km
Take a ride along the Thames and see London's riverside landmarks. The National Cycle Network's Route 4 is packed full of sights, such as the London Eye, the Globe Theatre and Tate Modern, to name but a few. The ride also uses quieter roads with traffic-free paths, so you'll easily be able to sightsee. We recommend stopping off at Borough Market to sample the delicacies from there before heading to the Royal Observatory.
Big Ben to Richmond Park
Hard - 38 km
Richmond is a cyclist's nirvana with its hills, stunning views, and plenty of wildlife, including 600 deer. Starting on the Cycle Superhighway 8 from Westminster to Wandsworth, you'll follow the Thames passing Tate Britain and Battersea Power Station before joining the hustle and bustle of the South Circular. From here, merge with Lycra-clad bikers into the park for its 7.5-mile circuit. The clockwise loop has the steep climb of Broomfield Hill; it’s challenging but you’ll be rewarded with views of St Paul’s Cathedral. Or take the slightly flatter-but-longer Dark Hill if you go for the anti-clockwise route.
Hyde Park loop
Easy - 7km
For a couple of pounds you can pick up a ‘Boris Bike’ at the entrance nearest to Marble Arch and set off on a loop along the traffic free cycle lanes in central London's largest green space. Check out the Italian gardens as you cycle past Kensington Palace before stopping to admire the Royal Albert Hall and the Albert Memorial. Turn down the West Carriage Drive for views of the Serpentine and the Princess Diana Memorial Fountain.
King's Cross to Notting Hill
Easy - 10km
This is a hidden gem. This mainly flat route gets you from the King's Cross to Portobello Market in a jiffy. Join the Regent's Canal towpath at Granary Square; you'll soon get to Trellick Tower, then Camden Lock, and Regent's Park. Stop off for a break in one of the many waterside pubs and cafés in Little Venice. Turn off the track at the brutalist beacon and weave your way down the quiet side streets into the heart of Notting Hill. The narrowboats on the canal.
Regent's Park Outer Circle
Easy - 4km
Loop around the parameter of Regent's Park; it's a great place to practice race intervals and pick up some serious speed as there are few traffic lights to worry about. Some sections are car free so you can zoom around to your hearts content. Begin at the far corner up from Regent's Park tube and cycle anti-clockwise around the park. The beautifully tended flowerbeds and open spaces, make this one of London's prettiest parks. Try spotting giraffes as they're heads pop out of London Zoo!
The Tower of London to Big Ben
Easy - 5km
This riverside ride takes in many of the capital's icons. It follows one big cycle lane so you can feel safe. You'll see the Tower of London, the Shard, Shakespeare's Globe and Tate Modern before heading up to Somerset House, then along Victoria Embankment with views of the London Eye and the South Bank. You'll see Big Ben in front of the Palaces of Westminster before heading home.