Whether you ride fast or slow, on-road or off-road, there is something uniquely special about enjoying some outdoor time on two wheels - or to quote the words of JFK ‘nothing compares to the simple pleasure of a bike ride’. Here in the region we have something for everyone from high-energy, adrenaline-pumping mountain biking blasts to gentle forest paths the whole family can enjoy.
7Stanes - Glentress & Innerleithen
Described by Lonely Planet’s 1000 ultimate adventures as a ‘mountain biking mecca’ the 7Stanes site at Glentress and Innerleithen is seen as one of the best biking centres in the UK. An absolute must-visit for anyone interested in mountain-biking, the area offers everything from beginner trails to extreme downhill, including a brand new state-of-the-art £8.5m visitor centre with fantastic facilities, cafe and bike hire.
At Glentress you’ll find a huge selection of trails from wide, flat greens, to single-track blues, tricky reds, and jaw-clenching, handlebar-crunching blacks! It also includes a number of graded circuits for those starting-out or looking to develop core riding skills, including features such as log balance beams, rock-hops and rollers.
Adrenaline seekers will love the downhill and free-ride trails at Innerleithen which include leg-burning climbs followed by descents with jumps and drop-offs that are deserving of their difficult and extreme gradings. Definitely not for the faint-hearted!
7Stanes - Newcastleton
Close to the England/Scotland border, Newcastleton is the UK’s first bike friendly village, and is also home to a 7Stanes mountain bike centre. Many of its routes are shorter than other 7Stanes trails and are perfect for less experienced riders. Again there is a Skills Area to help you decide what trail is right for you, then choose from The Caddrouns which is a fun introduction to mountain biking; The Linns trail, a scenic route sticking to forest roads; or The Red Route a fantastic ride for more experienced riders with a narrow single track sticking to the valley side.
The whole family will love cycling on the 250 mile circular Borderloop4 which starts at Peebles in the west down to the north sea coast at Eyemouth in the east. Taking in a variety of terrain including quiet country lanes, this route is suitable for all abilities and can be broken down into smaller loops starting from Peebles, Hawick, Kelso and Melrose. Cycle at your own pace on this waymarked route, stop-off and see the sights along the way, and take a well-deserved coffee or lunch stop.
Tweed Cycle Route
Starting in Biggar and finishing on the coast in Berwick-upon-Tweed, the Tweed Cycle Way is a 95 mile waymarked cycle route running through the heart of the Scottish Borders with the River Tweed as its linking theme. It is an attractive route, avoiding busy roads almost entirely, with many fine hill and forest views and picturesque towns along the way including Peebles, Melrose, Kelso and Coldstream.
The Coast & Castles Route
The Coast & Castles Way is a moderate route involving hilly stages and remote areas, but with wonderful views, historic sites and friendly communities it offers a memorable journey through the area’s natural heritage, passing by Hadrian’s Wall, unspoilt heritage coastline, the beautiful Tweed Valley and on through the Moorfoot Hills to Edinburgh.
The Sandstone Way
The Sandstone Way is an exciting new mountain biking route in Northumberland extending to over 100 miles in length and running all the way from Berwick-upon-Tweed to Hexham. The route has something for all abilities from family friendly trails to more challenging trail variations for experienced riders. The full route can be completed over 3-4 relaxed days riding (2 days for fitness buffs!) and includes eight optional loops which can all be covered in a day. You can expect a lovely scenic ride through an ever changing landscape dotted with interesting geological features and iconic scenery.
For further information on all Borders cycle routes, including bike hire, transfer and guiding services visit Cycle Scottish Borders who have a wealth of information on all things cycling.
Alternatively, check out Cycle Northumberland featuring everything cycling in Northumberland. Includes family, leisure, road and mountain biking routes as well as some amazing long distance rides. Keep up to date with news and events and plan your next great cycling adventure!
Ten days of of bike riding events at TweedLove in May - a not-to-be-missed festival of all things biking.