bike touring trails

UK ranks second in Europe for bike touring trails

This year, more people are touring Europe by bicycle than ever before. Affordable, eco-friendly and quick, travelling by bike is a great way to explore new places. 

With that in mind, sought to find out which are the best countries in Europe for bike touring. To do so, calculated the number of trails per 1,000 km² of each country. 

These are the best European countries for bike touring 

CountryCountry size (km²)Number of biking trailsTrails per 1,000 km²
1. Switzerland41,2853,81392
2. The United Kingdom243,6107,30330
3. Germany357,5888,48224
4. Denmark42,95190621
5. The Netherlands41,54376318
6. Italy301,2303,64212
7. France543,9405,95811
8. Spain505,9904,98410
9. Austria83,8717659
10. Hungary93,0253133

1. Switzerland — 92 biking trails per 1,000 km² 

Switzerland is revealed to be a cycler’s paradise with a whopping 92 trails per 1,000 km². One popular biking trail to consider if you want to explore Switzerland on two wheels is the route going from Geneva (the capital of Switzerland), to Lake Constance (a central European lake that borders Germany, Austria and Switzerland). This route is approximately 526 km (326 miles) and you’re certain to see most of Switzerland’s natural beauty while crossing it. 

2. United Kingdom — 30 biking trails per 1,000 km² 

The United Kingdom comes in second place as the best country in Europe for its bike touring routes — 92 trails per 1,000 km². One of the most scenic biking trails in the UK is the Great North Trail, starting in the Peak District and going all the way to John o’Groats in the far north of Scotland. This absolute beast of a route is 1,287.48 km (800 miles) long and you’ll be able to see Loch Lomond, the Yorkshire Dales, Trossachs National Park, Loch Ness, the Peak District, and Kielder Forest along the way.

3. Germany — 24 biking trails per 1,000 km² 

The third most popular country for bike touring routes is Germany with 24 trails per 1,000 km². One of the most beautiful routes is the Elbe Cycle Path (Elberadweg). With a length of 894 km (555 miles), the path begins at the North Sea in Cuxhaven, it crosses seven German federal states before its end in the Czech Republic. During this biking trail, you won’t only be able to enjoy the beautiful German countryside, but also visit iconic cities such as Hamburg, Magdeburg, and Dresden. 

4. Denmark — 21 biking trails per 1,000 km² 

In fourth place we have Denmark with 21 biking trails 1,000 km². If you enjoy being around bodies of water, the Furesø Rundt is a trail that makes you explore all around lake Furesø. The landscapes are very varied, from forests to flower-bursting fields, and of course, the lake itself, this is a great place not only for biking but also for camping. 

5. The Netherlands — 18 biking trails per 1,000 km² 

The fifth best country for bike touring routes is the Netherlands with 18 per 1,000 km² available cycling trails. One particular trail to try out is the Pijnacker–Rotterdam route. Going for approximately 40 km (25 miles), you will pass over the two bridges over the river Maas.

6. Italy — 12 biking trails per 1,000 km² 

In sixth place is Italy with 12 biking trails per 1,000 km². If you would like to explore the combined beauty of the sea and mountains, the biking trail in Liguria called ‘Riviera dei Fiori’ is the one for you. Stretching across 25 km ( 15 miles), you will have the opportunity to visit beautiful cities and towns such as Cipressa and Sanremo. 

7. France — 11 biking trails per 1,000 km² 

In seventh place we have France with 11 biking trails per 1,000 km². One of the most breath-taking cycling routes you can do in France is the Véloroute du Lin & Littoral Cycle Route. This path runs from Hautot-sur-Mer to Fécamp, is 75km (47 miles) and during spring/summer you will be able to enjoy fields bursting with blue flax flowers.

8. Spain — 10 biking trails per 1,000 km² 

With 10 biking trails per 1,000 km², Spain is the eighth best European country to be explored whilst cycling. One of Spain’s top biking routes is from Teruel to Valencia Vía Verde de Ojos Negros. If you prefer mountain trails, another option is the Transpirenaica which goes from Cabo de Higuer to Cabo de Creus. 

9. Austria — 9 biking trails per 1,000 km² 

In ninth place is Austria with 9 biking trails per 1,000 km². Again, if you are a big fan of lake loops, Vorarlberg Trail and Bodensee Lake Loop is a scenic trail between Bludenz and Bregenz that offers a variety of attractions and activities such as hiking, fishing, and even shopping.

10. Hungary — 3 biking trails per 1,000 km² 

With 3 biking trails per 1,000 km² available, Hungary is the tenth best European country for bike touring routes. If you are interested in exploring the beauties around Lake Balaton, the Siofok Loop from Szabadifürdő is a great trail to follow. This tour is only 162 km (101 miles) long and it also includes a scenic ferry trip! 


1. The experts at sought to find out which are the European countries with the most biking touring routes available.

2. gathered data on the number of biking trails per country from Alltrails, a reputable hiking trail aggregator.

3, Furthermore, calculated each country’s biking trail density based on the number of trails per km².

4. Countries were subsequently ranked in descending order of biking trail density.

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