A great bike ride doesn’t have to involve covering 100 miles and spending the entire day in the saddle. If you pick the right route, you can see a day’s worth of landmarks in under an hour, especially if your ride is set in Lee Valley Regional Park – an appealingly tranquil green space at the edge of London.
If you’re planning a cycle during National Bike Week, which runs from 10-18th June, try one of these five routes in the Lee Valley. You don’t even need to wait for the weekend – most are short enough to fit into an evening.
Distance: 3.5 miles/5.6km
This short ride starts and ends in the Olympic Park at the VeloPark, heading north for a loop around the Hackney Marshes in between.
Distance: 5.5 miles/8.9km
If you get halfway through the Road To Gold route and don’t feel like turning back for the Olympic Park just yet, extend your trip by riding further north to the Walthamstow Marshes.
Distance: 5 miles/8km
Waltham Abbey is the setting for this 8km ride, which starts in Gunpowder Park and visits the Lee Valley White Water Centre before returning south via the towpath alongside the River Lee. Other highlights on the route include the Knights Pits, which are a haven for dragonflies throughout the summer months.
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Distance: 16 miles/25.7km
A longer ride that shows off some of the beautiful scenery of the River Lee Country Park just north of the M25. There’s miles of marshland to explore, which means there should be no shortage of wildlife to admire en route.
Distance: 8.5 Miles/13.7km
The two rivers in question are the Lee and the Stort, with riders on this route following each for a spell. This is another great ride for wildlife lovers, especially twitchers (birdwatchers who chase rare species), because you’ll pass through the RSPB Rye Meads nature reserve and the wildflower meadows of Stanstead Innings.
For more information on cycling in the Lee Valley head to visitleevalley.org.uk/cycling (opens in new tab).
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