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Where to Ride in North Wales

Here in North Wales we have a great mixture of on-road and off-road trails. The off-road trails range from easy cycling along the coast to single-track and cross-country mountain biking. There are some classic on-road routes taking in the best views of Snowdon or winding through country lanes in the valleys.

Websites

The following websites, in no particular order, are a suggestion of places to look for more information. We have also included information on clubs and organisations offering group rides for a sociable day or evening out.

Cycling in North Wales - CTC Cymru. Details of illustrated on road rides, off road rides and cycleways plus information about group runs and activities.

Flattyres MTB Routes. Great site with route descriptions, maps and pictures of Col's favourite rides in Wales and the North West. Also info on monthly 'social' rides out around North Wales and the North West.

North Wales Coast Cycle Route - No 5 (Sustrans). From Holyhead to Chester. Sections of the route between the seaside resorts of Llandudno, Colwyn Bay, Rhyl and Prestatyn are traffic free and are ideal for short day rides.

n Las Ogwen - Sustrans Easy Route. Traffic-Free Trail. From Porth Penrhyn, Bangor to Llyn Ogwen along old railway cuttings and through spoils of the slate quarries with magnificent view of Snowdonia.

Lôn Eifion - Sustrans Easy Route. Traffic-Free Trail. From Caernarfon. A scenic route alongside the Welsh Highland Railway with views of Caernarfon Bay and Snowdonia.

Lôn Las Menai - part of No 8 (Sustrans). Traffic-Free Trail. From Caernarfon east to Y Felinheli (Port Dinorwig). 4 1/2 miles one way, 9 miles return. Start at the Victoria Dock, Caernarfon and follow signs for 'Lon Las Menai' and 'National Cycle Route 8'.

Lôn Las Cymru (North) - No 8 (Sustrans). Builth Wells to Holyhead via Llanidloes, Macchynlleth, Criccieth, Caernarfon and Bangor.

Clwb Beicio Mynydd Dyffryn Conwy. The Mountain Bike Club for the Conwy Valley. The aim of the club is to organise mountain bike activities and to develop its members' skills and knowledge.

Ride Hiraethog. Discover the Mynydd Hiraethog area which comprises Clocaenog Forest, Lynn Brenig and Alwen reservoirs and Denbigh moors. The website has mountain bike routes for all abilities, downloadable maps, bike specific facilities, 3D 'flythroughs', accommodation and news & events.

Ride the Clwyds. Discover the Clwydian Range located in North East Wales and an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty with magnificent scenery, rolling hills and hundreds of kilometres of quiet trails. The website has all the same features as Ride Hiraethog.

Forestry Commision - Mountain Bike Trails. Downloadable Trail Guides for the Gwydyr, Coed y Brenin, Cwmcarn and their other mountain bike centres

Mountain Biking Wales. Latest information on the six purpose-built world-class Mountain Bike centres in Wales including Coed y Brenin and Coed Llandegla, as well as the superb riding elsewhere in Wales such as the Gwydyr Forest with the Marin Trail and Penmachno.

MTB-Wales.com. Guide to MTB in Wales with news, reviews, downloadable routes, video clips of the trails and a community forum.

MTBWales.co.uk. A North Wales based mountain bike community that boasts over 2000 active members and over 250,000 hits a months. The community regularly organise rides and get togethers on the forums.

North Wales Mountain Bike Association. A cycling club promoting events and places to ride and race MTB's in Wales and North Wales.

Foel DH Riders. Group of mountain bikers striving to improve Downhill in North Wales. With the support of the Forestry Commission and local businesses they set to work on Foel Grasnach. This is now an official mountain bike venue with 3 downhill trails, full uplift access and enough technical riding to test the UK's best. Looking after it are the Foel DH Riders and you can join their Club.

Mountain Biking North Wales. The North Wales Online Mountain Biking Community - organise regular Forum rides

IMBA-UK Rules of the Trail. International Mountain Biking Association, working for mountain biking

The Countryside Code - Wales

Traveline-Cymru. Public transport info. Scroll down the page on this link for info on Bikes on Buses & Trains in Wales. Also has a great journey planner.

Other Sources of Information

Cycle Routes Booklet
. We have our own book of 7 cycle routes in Llandudno, Conwy & Rhos-on-Sea Area for £2.50 including P&P. The routes range from 1 1/2 hour short rides to full day rides, from relaxed, easy cycling along the coast to more stenuous cycling in the hill and mountains of Conwy. Included is information on cafés, teashops, pubs, picnic-sites and places of interest. If you would like a copy just send us an email though our Contact Us page.

Conwy Valley Cycle Route. Chosen to avoid main roads where possible, this route follows the quiet country lanes of the scenic Conwy Valley. It is well sign-posted by brown and white tourism signs in a clockwise direction. Best done as two separate loops, the official starting point for both is at Gwydir Park, Llanrwst but they can be started anywhere along the way. The Llanrwst to Conwy loop is 25 miles and the Llanrwst to Penmachno loop is 21 miles. There is leaflet available from Tourist Information Centres which states, "This route is designed to suit the family cyclist and all but the very fit can expect to dismount for one or two of the steeper gradients. However, the breathtaking views of Snowdonia, the Conwy Valley and the hills to the east make the effort worthwhile!". There is now a cycle path along the A470 south of Llanrwst near Meadow Vale Garage to near Hafod Farm.

Cycling Wales from VisitWales. A practical guide to leisure cycling and cycle touring. Features 11 Cycle Break Centres and the best day cycling routes in Wales. Order this and other brochures from VisitWales.

Cycling Holiday in Snowdonia

This is a suggested itinerary for a few days cycling in Snowdonia.

Arrive Conwy: With the sea on one side and mountains on the other Conwy is a medieval walled town complete with 13th century castle. It includes Aberconwy House (14th century merchant's house), Plas Mawr (Elizabethan town house), the Smallest House in Britain and Telford's 19th century suspension bridge.

Day 1: Conwy to Betws-y-Coed. 18 miles. Along the picturesque Conwy Village, through villages such as Rowen and Caerhun (visit the pretty 16th century church on the banks of the river), past the Roman Spa where you can still take the waters and Trefriw with its woollen mill making traditional Welsh double-weave tapestry bedspreads. Stop in the market town of Llanrwst for lunch with its 17th century bridge and 16th century Gwydir Castle. Then as the route becomes more wooded on to Betws-y-Coed.

Day 2: Betws-y-Coed to Beddgelert. 17 miles. Past the famous Swallow Falls through Capel Curig and out of the forest into more barren, mountainous landscape. Fantastic views of the Snowdon Horseshoe, past the lakes Llyn Gwynant and Llyn Dinas, just stupendous view of Snowdon and its accompanying mountains and on to the lovely village of Beddgelert. Beddgelert is home of the Sygun Copper Mine, the grave of Gelert the famous wolfhound of the legend and an excellent homemade ice-cream shop.

Day 3: Beddgelert to Llanberis. 20 miles via Caernarfon, 11 mile direct. Head up the valley past Beddgelert forest towards the coast. Either carry on into Caernarfon and visit the magnificent castle or take the shorter and more direct route to Llanberis which would make this a relatively short day's cycling but gives you chance to explore Llanberis and its surroundings. Or you could spend an extra day in Llanberis. At Llanberis you can visit, Snowdon Mountain Railway (visit the top of Snowdon by steam or diesel train on a rack and pinion railway), Electric Mountain (actually go inside the mountain containing the hyproelectic power station), Welsh Slate Museum and Padarn Country Park.

Day 4: Llanberis to Bangor. 26 miles. Along the Pass of Llanberis and on to Capel Curig then fork left to Llyn Ogwen and Idwal Cottage, truly wild, remote scenery. From here join the cycle track Lôn Las Ogwen through magnificent scenery down into Bangor with the option to visit Penrhyn Castle a neo-Norman castle built for the slate magnate Lord Penrhyn on an enormous scale.

Day 5: Bangor to Llandudno. 20 miles. Follow the North Wales Coast Cycle Route for stunning views through Llanfairfechan and Penmaenmawr to Conwy and then on to Llandudno, the celebrated Victorian seaside town, via Deganwy.

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