About Slow Cycling

cycling in beautiful countryside

You’ve probably heard of Slow Food, Slow Travel, Slow Planet, and others. Slow Cycling is for people who feel the same about riding a bicycle. It’s for leisurely enjoyment, not achievement, speed, or distance-bragging. If a chosen route is worth pedalling along, it’s probably worth taking some time over.

Sartorially, slow cycling is about normal clothes not body-hugging lycra (unless you really must!). Chemically, it releases serotonin and other happy hormones, not adrenalin.

The Slow Bicycle Movement, a 16,000+ member group on Facebook, puts it like this: ‘Slow cycling is about riding your bicycle in a relaxed manner, with time to look around and see the landscape.’


This website started as a way of sharing our favourite circular day-rides in the Cotswolds AONB (Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty). The rides include downloadable route maps, photos, route highlights, and suggestions for places to stay if you’re coming from a different part of the country.

The site will soon cover more of the UK and Europe, as well as more tips, how tos, links and resources that we’ve found useful.

Circular Cycle Routes

While hundreds of websites provide maps of A-B routes, popular routes, and challenging routes for achievement-oriented road cycling, SlowCycling.net is different. We focus on:

• circular rides. So no need to cycle back the same way or arrange transport back.
• uncrowded, lesser-known routes with beautiful scenery and pleasant places to pause.
• routes on traffic-free off-road tracks and/or quiet rural lanes.
• manageable rides for moderate fitness levels and all ages.

See also tips and resources for finding circular cycle routes in your area.

Cycling Holidays and Getaways

Our second mission is to research and inspire leisurely cycling adventures in new places at home and abroad. That can mean a weekend getaway, a bit of cycling as part of a longer holiday, or a dedicated ‘cycling holiday’.

To start with, there’s a ‘How to’ guide to budget-friendly DIY cycling holidays. It’s based on our experience of planning (and enjoying planning!) our own custom-made trips at home and abroad – at around half the cost of a packaged cycling holiday.

On these independent trips, we usually focus on circular day-rides from a single centre, which allow more flexibility and freedom than the typical multi-day A-B cycling journey. No hassle with daily accommodation changes either, or the expense of luggage transportation.

Organised self-guided cycling holidays and cycling tours with a knowledgeable guide sometimes have advantages too. So we’ll list some of the best ones in beautiful and/or interesting places.

Tips and Resources

Tips and resources, based on our own experience, aim to help you enjoy this wonderfully healthy, fun, environmentally friendly, low impact, sustainable form of travel and everyday enjoyment.

Topics include:
keys to UK Ordnance Survey maps
easy navigation on- and off-road
hiring bikes (an insurance warning)