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The Most Scenic Cycling Routes in Europe

Europe's love affair with cycling continues to blossom, and it's clear that active vacations built around cycling are proving to be increasingly popular.


But for many cyclists, the real allure lies in exploring the continent's diverse landscapes on a scenic cycling route.


From rolling vineyards to dramatic coastlines, Europe offers a wealth of options for cyclists of all abilities.


Here, we'll take you through some of the most breathtaking European cycling tours, each promising an unforgettable experience.

 

Planning Your European Cycling Adventure


Firstly, before you book your adventure, you must remember to do some quality research into the difficulty level of each route in order to help you choose one that suits your abilities.


Ensure you invest in a good-quality bike and pack comfortable, weather-appropriate clothing alongside essential cycling gear.


With a little planning and preparation, your cycling adventure is sure to be an unforgettable experience, as no matter your cycling experience or preferred scenery, Europe has a breathtaking route waiting to be explored.

 

Loire Valley

The Loire Valley, France


Immerse yourself in the fairytale chateaux and endless vineyards of France's Loire Valley.


The well-maintained Loire à Vélo route follows the majestic Loire River. Gentle inclines and well-signed paths make this route ideal for families and casual cyclists.


Pedal past charming villages adorned with half-timbered houses, stop for wine tastings at local vineyards, and soak up the history of this enchanting region.

 

Val di Noto, Marzamemi

Val di Noto, Marzamemi, and Syracuse, Italy


Escape the crowds and discover the hidden gems of southern Sicily.


This route winds through the UNESCO-listed Baroque towns of Val di Noto, each a masterpiece of golden sandstone architecture.


Continue your journey to the charming seaside village of Marzamemi, a picture-perfect spot with a bustling harbor and crystal-clear waters.


Finish your ride in the vibrant city of Syracuse, where ancient ruins stand alongside lively markets.


Be prepared for some moderate climbs along the coast, but the rewards are well worth the effort.

 

River Rhine

The Rhine Cycle Route, Switzerland, and the Netherlands


Experience the majesty of the Rhine River as it winds its way from the heart of Switzerland to the bustling Netherlands.


The Rhine Cycle Route offers a variety of landscapes, from vineyards and charming German towns to the windmills and flower fields of Holland.


Cyclists can choose from shorter sections or embark on the entire journey. The route is well-developed, with excellent signage and plenty of rest stops along the way.

 

Alpe-Adria Radweg

The Alpe-Adria Radweg, Austria, and Italy


For the more adventurous cyclists, the Alpe-Adria Radweg offers a challenging yet rewarding ride from the foot of the Alps to the sun-drenched shores of the Adriatic Sea.


This route traverses stunning mountain scenery and charming Austrian villages before finally descending into the Italian countryside.


Be ready for significant climbs, particularly in the early stages of the route.


Breathtaking vistas and a true sense of ultimate accomplishment await those who conquer this epic journey.

 

The Danube Cycle Path, Germany, and Austria


Starting from Donaueschingen in Germany and ending in Romania’s Constanta, the Danube Cycle Path is Europe’s most famous route, and it’s easy to understand why.


Its riverside roads offer beautiful scenery that would take you over a month to cycle if you wanted to venture the full stretch.


However, many people chose to shorten the journey by going from Vienna to Budapest.


Easy to navigate with flat topography and infrastructure that is ideal for cyclists, this route is a once-in-a-lifetime experience, making it a must-do for keen bikers.


You will also have the opportunity to explore amazing cities, including Vienna, Budapest, Negotin, and Gyor.

 

Parenzana, Italy, Slovenia, and Croatia


If olive oil, local wine, and beach towns sounds appealing, this cycle route is the one for you.


Perfect for keen cyclists at an intermediate level, this 75-mile stretch runs adjacent to the Perenza Railway, which previously connected Trieste in Italy with Porec in Croatia.


Coined the ‘Path of Heath and Friendship’ due to its interconnectivity, this route allows you to view beautiful Italian, Slovenian, and Croatian scenery, making it a worthwhile journey.


Though you will face many hills, expect plentiful vineyards, olive and peach groves, and amazing Adriatic villages.


You can also stop off at a range of gourmet food spots on your breaks, making this the ideal route for passionate foodies.

 

Hebridean Way, Scotland


Participating in this world-renowned Scottish route will not leave you feeling dissatisfied.


The 185-mile path incorporates ferry journeys to cross 10 islands, allowing you to experience the many awe-inspiring landscapes alongside the rugged Atlantic coastline.


Preferable for beginner to intermediate bikers due to the route’s length and hilly nature, the Hebridean Way is also renowned for its wildlife spotting opportunities.


Due to its peacefulness, you may be lucky enough to catch sight of some sheep, miniature horses, and puffins on your journey.


So, which path will you take?

 
Jenny Kakoudakis

Jenny Kakoudakis likes to blog about interiors. She launched award-winning Seasons in Colour in 2014. When she is not chasing criminals out of the financial system (her day job), she gets creative by redecorating her own home.


Download her free bathroom renovation guide here.

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