10 Great family-friendly cycle centres

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10 Great family-friendly cycle centres

Posted on June 5 in Routes

Lovely weather combined with the lockdown has resulted in many families getting out on their bikes; some perhaps for the first time ever. We thought therefore, it might be helpful to recommend a few top destinations for family bike riding around the UK. 

This is by no means a definitive list but maybe more of a tasty morsel to wet your appetite. For further information on each of these destinations follow the links to our UK map where you can download free PDF's (with all the information you need on getting there, facilities, trails, etc) to use on your phone, tablet, PC or to print off.


We are also offering an amazing deal on our 'UK Breaks with bikes'  book for just £10 for a limited time. This has detailed information, directions and Ordnance Survey maps for over 100 rides in popular holiday destinations around the UK.   

Don’t miss our amazing BOOK BUNDLE DEAL whilst the offer runs; get our 4 books covering the South East and South West of England, for the price of one!!!


Alice Holt Forest – a great destination for families & beginners, with Green and Blue grade trails through the woodland, as well as walks and play areas. There are also BBQ & picnic areas, toilets, a café and a cycle centre offering bike and trailer hire, repairs, training courses and guided rides.

WHERE: Surrey, South East England

For more information: https://www.roughrideguide.co.uk/routes.asp


Bedgebury Forest – not ideal for very young riders, but a 4km Blue family grade trail is ideal for young children and less experienced cyclists, and there is a Red grade MTB trail with more challenging singletrack too. Facilities include toilets, showers, bike shop & hire, playground, and café so you can make a full day of it too.

WHERE: Kent, South East.

For more information: https://www.roughrideguide.co.uk/routes.asp


Cannock Chase – Well known for the challenging Red grade TB trails of Follow the Dog and the Monkey Trail, Cannock also offers family-friendly cycle tracks. Explore the flatter, scenic parts of the Chase along either of the two Green grade trails suitable for families, or either of the two Blue grade trails, suitable for intermediate riders. There is also a downhill area, Stile Cop, for very experienced riders too.

WHERE: Staffordshire, Midlands.

For more information: https://www.roughrideguide.co.uk/routes.asp


Forest of Dean - set in spectacular broad-leaved woodland, the mountain biking at Forest of Dean has undergone a renaissance in recent years, with the construction of the XC and Downhill trails, but there is also a nice, long, Green grade family trail that follows the old railway lines and forest tracks. There is also a great café, bike shop, bike hire, toilets and showers.   

WHERE: Wye Valley, Gloucestershire.

For more information: https://www.roughrideguide.co.uk/routes.asp


Leeds Urban Bike Park - This former golf course has been converted into an awesome network of trails with trails and jumps for all abilities, making it a fun-fuelled destination for all the family. With café, bike shop with bike hire you can easily spend the day there.

WHERE: Leeds, North England.

For more information: https://www.roughrideguide.co.uk/routes.asp


Moors Valley – This country park and forest is aimed particularly towards families, with a variety of Green and Blue grade trails, all well waymarked with colour coded posts. There is also a jump park for anyone seeking some challenging riding, or just to watch, and with other facilities, such as a railway, Go Ape, Segway, Orienteering, Fishing, Golf, a Fitness trail, Gift Shop, Walking/Running Trails and cycle hire with tag-a-longs, trailers and child seats, it’s a fun day out for all.

WHERE: Near Ringwood in East Dorest, South England.

For more information: https://www.roughrideguide.co.uk/routes.asp


Swinley Forest – The forest has grown from a network of unofficial trails on the Crown Estate to one of the most popular trail centres in the South East. The Green grade trail is pretty short and basic, and the Blue grade trail is a significant jump, but there are also many, many miles of wide forest roads to explore. There is also a new skills coaching area with jumps and drops if you wish to hone your skills, as well as a café, toilets, visitors centre with an educational interactive science area, outdoor play area, orienteering, walks, Go Ape, Segway and a bike shop with bike hire and bike wash.

WHERE: Bracknell, Berkshire, South East

For more information: https://www.roughrideguide.co.uk/routes.asp


Coed Y Brenin, Wales – This was the first forest in the UK to be developed for the sport of mountain biking and to this day retains its reputation as the sports premier location. With a wide range of routes suitable for everyone from families on easy forest tracks to technical rocky trails for expert riders, a great cafe, bike shop, play area, and state of the art eco visitor centre with showers etc, it is a must-visit destination for all riders.

WHERE: Snowdonia, North Wales

For more information: https://www.roughrideguide.co.uk/routes.asp


Drumlanrig, Scotland - A spectacular stately home that in 2002 took the unusual step of adding mountain bike trails to its extensive grounds. There are several waymarked leisure cycling routes, including four Green grade routes; the 3km Riverside, 13km Alton Rigg, 5km Three Lochs, and 8.5km Castle Round. With further Blue, Red and Black grade MTB trails for more experienced riders too, it caters for everyone and with showers, café, bike shop with bike wash and hire bikes it offers a great day out for everyone.

WHERE: Thornhill, Dumfries & Galloway, Southern Scotland.

For more information: https://www.roughrideguide.co.uk/routes.asp


Glentress, Scotland - Perhaps the best-known trail centre in the UK, Glentress is just an hour from Edinburgh and has well-built weatherproof trails to suit riders of all abilities (although Downhill riders will want to go just a little way down to the road to Innerleithen). With a wide variety of excellent trails and top-notch facilities, such as a great bike shop, large café and camping, pods, etc it makes a fantastic destination for the day or weekend.

WHERE: Peebles, Tweed Valley, Scottish Borders.

For more information: https://www.roughrideguide.co.uk/routes.asp


Note: Make sure to check trails & facilities are open before travelling, as some car parks are currently still closed.

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