family cycle routes in Lancashire for you to explore
Family cycle routes in Lancashire are plentiful, and there is no doubt that this is a beautiful and varied county. From the flat coastal plains of the Fylde through to the rolling Bowland Fell, Lancashire offers wonderful cycling opportunities for all the family.
Here we have a selection of some of the best family cycle routes in Lancashire – just click on the route name to get full details.
Family cycle routes in Lancashire – Cycle Sprog’s selection
2.5 miles along a traffic free old railway line
Witton Park nestling under Billinge Hill, on the west side of Blackburn offers 480 acres of beautiful mixed woodland and farmland.
You can ride through the park on National Cycle Route 6 to the village of Pleasington. There is a visitor centre in the park with an exhibition area. The Old Stables tearoom provides light refreshments. With a playground and pets corner, Witton Park is a good place to go for a cycle ride with children. A programme of led rides with bike hire is run from the Visitor Centre.
National Cycle Route 62 covers over 12 miles along the promenade at Blackpool, making it the UK’s longest seafront cycle route. For a great day out cycle along the promenade visiting sea front attractions on route. It is a great route for all the family, and passes by all the sea front attractions. Parts can get busy in high season.
Three great family friendly Sustrans routes through Burnley and the surrounding area. Find out all about Burnley’s rich and varied history from the role of local families in the civil war, through to the cutting edge of weaving technology in the Industrial Revolution. This route links together local attractions using a combination of traffic free route, converted former railway lines, canal towpaths and woodland trails, and short sections of quiet or traffic calmed roads.
Because some of the sections of route are quite long they have been split into separate routes coming together at The Weavers’ Triangle Visitor Centre but can be combined.
As family cycle routes in Lancashire go, this is a great one. Starting in the village of Dunsop Village in the Ribble Valley, it takes you out into the heart of the Forest of Bowland. Travel alongside the upper stretch of the river Dunsop with the fells on all sides of you. Flat tarmac bridleway – 8km
This route follows the canal towpath from Foulridge and is part of the Pennine Cycleway. 10km, mainly towpath, but short on-road stretch.
Another route from Foulridge, this route follows the canal north towards the Yorkshire Dales. Lots to see en-route, it’s flat and traffic free for the entire 6km
Gisburn Forest is the largest in Lancashire, climbing above the Ribble Valley with fantastic views of the Forest of Bowland. This family cycle ride takes in plenty of wildlife and fauna. Mountain Bikes are recommended for this 9km route along forest tracks.
The link above will take you to a great booklet with 6 family friendly, mainly traffic free routes in Lancaster, Carnforth, Morecambe and the surrounding areas.
This 18k triangular ride offers plenty of variety, ranging from the historic heart of Lancaster, the car-free bustle of the Greenway, the wide open space of Morecambe’s breezy Prom to the peaceful canal towpath.
This route is almost all on traffic-free cycle-tracks, apart from one stretch of about 250m on an on-road cycle-lane; this can be avoided by walking the short distance. It’s also almost entirely flat, with just one gentle climb approaching Hest Bank.
Lytham Promenade is a great place to cycle with children. For a sedate ride, pedal past Lytham Green with its windmill and lifeboat station to Fairhaven Lake and Granny’s Bay. The RSPB have a visitor centre at Fairhaven Lake. There is a children’s playground and a lakeside café where you can stop for a drink and a bite.
There are views across the Ribble Estuary from promenade. The Ribble Estuary is one of the country’s top bird watching sites with over 250,000 birds wintering here to escape the cold of the Arctic, where they spend the summers.
There is a 20km route there and back along the Pennine Cycleway from Victoria Park to Townley Park via Nelson and Burnley that is ideal for those on single bikes. It isn’t recommended for trailers, taglongs, trailgators or tandems, due to barriers along the route.
The Padiham to Burnley cycle route via Ightenhill passes along the scenic Calder Valley, but does involve quite a lot of quiet roads, so is more suited for families with older children, who are confident cycling on road, or those still in seats, trailers, tagalongs etc.
Follow the Pennine Cycleway along the Leeds & Liverpool Canal, following signs from Colne Train Station to Foulridge Whalf.
As this is mainly along a towpath it’s relatively ﬂat and the surface is good whatever the weather so it’s a good route for all abilities to tackle. There is also plenty to see along the way
So there you have it. A Cycle Sprog selection of family cycle rides in Lancashire, ready and waiting for you to saddle up, fun.
If you’ve got a favourite family cycle route in Lancashire that we’ve missed, and you’d like us to include, please do let us know.
Both Hoseasons and Cottages On-line have a selection of family friendly properties available for weekend and longer breaks in Lancashire.
Ribby Hall Village, situated at Wrea Green, between Preston and Blackpool, has a wealth of on-site amenities for those staying in their lodges, including cycle hire.
Lancashire family cycling Books and Maps
There isn’t much in the way of specific family orientated cycling books for this area, but we have come across this family walking guide for the Bowland Forest, if you fancy leaving the bikes at home, plus a cycling map for the Forest of Bowland if you’re planning your own routes in this area.
Thanks to the Visit Lancashire website for much of the information
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