The Best UK Riding Routes
When you think of the world’s great riding roads images of stunning mountain scenery, fast sweeping bends and smooth tarmac spring to mind. But forget The Great Ocean Road and Route 66, the UK has some fantastic routes with all of the essential ingredients on offer. Here are some of our favourites.
Whether you’re a seasoned tourer or just looking for a great route for your first adventure, make sure you be safe and keep to the rules of the road at all times. Remember, these routes are public roads and not racetracks.
So enjoy yourself as you sweep through the impressive landscapes and tackle the best routes the UK has to offer.
A542, The Horseshoe Pass, north Wales
Named after its shape, the Horseshoe Pass winds its way around a North Wales valley up to a dizzying 1,400ft peak which offers some incredible views. The route’s steady incline makes both the ascent and decent relatively easy and offers the perfect environment for even the newest riders. But make no mistake, the Horseshoe pass is one of the most spectacular riding routes the UK has to offer and well worth a visit.
Hardknott Pass, Lake District, Cumbria
If you’re looking for a real challenge then this is it. A single track road, the Hardknott pass winds its way through the Lake District between Eskdale and the Duddon Valley.
With a 1 in 3 gradient the Hardknott pass is the joint steepest road in Great Britain so it is definitely not for the faint hearted. Originally a Roman road, this narrow, winding stretch of tarmac can seem daunting at first, but once you’ve conquered the 1,291 feet challenge you are in for a real reward at the summit.
The A4117, Clee Hill, Shropshire
For a challenging descent with spectacular views over Shropshire and the surrounding countryside head along the A4177 from Ludlow to Cleobury. For those who’d rather go up hill the other way works just as well.
An ever popular route, you can expect plenty of company from other bikers as you travel. The top of Titterstone Clee Hill is the perfect rest stop. With a height of over 1,500ft this superb viewpoint has breath-taking views over the Malvern Hills and Welsh mountains
A537 Buxton to Macclesfield, The Cat and Fiddle
Between Buxton and Macclesfield this 11 km route stretches right through the heart of the Peak District. One of the most popular motorcycle roads in the UK, The Cat and Fiddle run guarantees a challenging ride with plenty of stunning scenery and on most days you will find a number on other riders on route.
If this is your first attempt try to take it easy as there are a number of tricky corners which could catch you out, not to mention wandering sheep! Be aware the road has a 50 mph speed limit due to it being named as one of the most dangerous in the country.
The A82, Glasgow to Inverness
As you travel the along the A82 between Inverness and Glasgow you will soon realise why this is a real favourite among bikers. Think sweeping bends, graceful gradients and amazing Scottish landscapes.
The route takes in Loch Lomond, Glencoe, Loch Ness, Fort William and Augustus so be sure to take time to explore the sights. Helpfully, there are plenty of campsites, B&Bs and hotels to help you make the most of your adventure.
A2 Northern Ireland – The Antrim Coast Road
For open roads with spectacular coastal scenery, it’s hard to beat the 60-mile A2 in Northern Ireland. Ending at the world famous Giants Causeway, the road is extremely biker friendly and as you travel along the coast there are plenty of quaint fishing villages and secluded coves to explore.
The NW200 is actually staged in this area and it’s rumoured to be where Joey Dunlop first broke-in his leathers so the racer in you can enter your very own world of road trials. But don’t get carried away, make sure you stick to the speed limit and go easy on the overtaking.