Cycling in the New Forest
Come on down! The area is predominantly flat and has fantastic cycle trails and road cycling options.
Phil, our excellent graphic designer is a keen cyclist, both on and off road. Here’s our interview with him in early 2020, read more here.
There is a New Forest Cycle Code which is:
- Keep to the way-marked tracks
- Slow down and call out a warning when approaching other forest users
- Take extra care when nearing horse riders and walkers
- Avoid disturbing the ponies, cattle or other wildlife. Slow down and be sure to give them space
- Keep well away from any forest works
- Do not pass any vehicle loading timber until you have been told it is safe to do so
- Plan your route and buy an area map. Aim to be off the trails by dusk.
Where to go
Many parts of the forest, hidden to the motorist, are easily accessible by bicycle on designated gravel tracks.
The best guidance is on the Ordnance Survey map of the area – it’s Explorer OL22 (the Weatherproof version is particularly useful) – which shows all the cycle routes, covers a far wider area and contains considerably more detail than any online cycle map.
There is some great info here on the main New Forest tourist information website.
And here on a local cycling guide website.
Or here on the Cycleexperience (bike hire from Brockenhurst) website.
Once you get into the open forest, there are family friendly, safe off-road and gentle cycle routes, with tracks through the open heathland and sheltered woods. More active folk can cycle to nearby villages such as Lyndhurst, Burley and Rhinefield.
Our favourite ride with kids is from Brockenhurst out to Bank and stop at the Royal Oak pub for a half waypoint. Return on the same route. It is all off-road and mainly flat. There are good rope swings on the way by the wooden bridge 2 miles out of Brock’. Park by the church in Brockenhurst.
In Brockenhurst. Cyclexperience are a great company. Our guests get 10% off.
Not only can you hire an excellent choice of bikes right beside the train station, but you can also get the bikes delivered to your door. They have an extensive selection of routes with good maps, so enjoying the National Park and escaping into the woods has never been easier.
In Beaulieu. New Forest Activities also hire bikes. You’ll get 10% off from them too. They’re based in Beaulieu and very well regarded.
In Lyndhurst. The Woods Cyclery is a leading brand in bike-packing, long distance tours and specialist trips and kit. They have a great and micro coffee shop on site. Very cool fellas.
In Burley. Forest Leisure Cycling covers the north of the New Forest and perfectly located for rides straight from the cycle hire shop!