London is a fantastic place to explore whether on foot or by bike. There are so many attractions and places to visit that you could spend your entire trip sight-seeing and not cover even a fraction of them. The best time to visit London is of course in summer or spring but if you want the best discounts you need to travel in tourist off-season.
That is the time when you can score the best deals on hotel accommodation in London. An added benefit of visiting the city at this time is that the main attractions are less crowded and you can sight see at leisure, without the bother of too many people around the place.
If you want to stay in a premium hotel at an affordable price a good option is the Park Grand Central Paddington London Hotel. Its location in the centre of the city makes it convenient to visit the many attractions found in central London. If you are fond of biking there are some great trails to explore in and around the city. While London is certainly not among the most bike friendly cities, there still are some great scenic routes, including those within the royal parks that are great for riding.
Some of the best biking spots include the following:
Hackney Gasworks to Little Venice:
One of the best cycling routes in town it begins at Hackney with riders passing through Dalston and De Beauvoir Town with City road Basin further up. Once upon a time this area was thriving business hub that existed along the canal. The stretch continues to Camden Town where is does get more crowded but still is fun to bike. Along the way you will see London Zoo that is located in Regents Park. It is one of the more peaceful sections away from the frenetic bustle of the city. The quickest way to get to Little Venice is to travel along the periphery of Regents Park. Along the way you will cross a few streets and end up at the intersection where Regents Canal meets with Grand Union Canal, the end of the biking trail.
It is the largest of the city’s Royal Parks and is the most popular cycling destination with a very large number of visitors on a weekly basis. Located on its periphery is an impressive 6.7 mile cycling track that is suited both for professionals as well as amateur riders. With stunning scenery to admire along the route and a cafe to refill if you are famished, it is a lovely spot to bike in London.
Limehouse Basin to London Fields:
The route is in a less crowded area along the stretch of Regent’s Canal. It begins at Limehouse and continues along the waterway to London Fields. There are several stops en-route with the first at Mile-End Park. The park has renovated and now houses a two pavilions and a climbing wall. The next pit-stop is at scenic Victoria Park with the trip finally ending at London Fields. On a Sunday you could visit Broadway Market before you end your ride at London Fields.
Lee Valley VeloPark:
It was purpose built for the London Olympics held in 2012 in the city. A velodrome it is perfect for cyclists of all levels. Apart from its famous track cycling there is an extra mile long cycle circuit built, an impressive 5 miles of mountain biking and even a BMX track for enthusiasts. Visitors need not carry their own bikes as these are available on hire.
While it cannot be called a cycling track in the formal sense, it was formerly a part of the railway line that ran along the route close to Finsbury Park. Later the track fell into disuse and the lines removed. This area that extends from Finsbury Park to Edgware Road is called the Parkland Walk. It continues a fair bit up to Highgate and passes below Crouch Hill. While biking in the area it would be worth riding a bit further to one of the city’s most historical burial places, Highgate Cemetery.
Another great place to enjoy biking is that of Bushy Park. It plays host to some of the most amazing scenery in the city and is also where Hampton Court Palace is situated. Visitors will find the 3.3 mile cycling trails towards the east part of Bushy Park with track also used by pedestrians and joggers. It was where Sir Bradley Wiggins won his gold medal as it was used for the 2012 Olympic trials.
The most famous of the eight Royal Parks in London, Hyde Park also is perfect for those who want to explore the area on a bicycle. The cycling trail stretches for three miles and is located on the eastern side of the park. The scenery is breathtakingly beautiful and the area is less crowded. Of course, you will have pedestrians and runners for company along the trail, but it still is a lovely place to bicycle.
Battersea to Kew Gardens:
If you want to enjoy some of the best views of the Thames River waterway and also some of the top attractions, this is the route to opt for. It starts at Westminster Pier and heads along to the picturesque Kew Gardens. Along the way you will catch sight of the Houses of Parliament, the Tate Britain and Battersea Station among other attractions. Travel along Wandsworth Bridge and you will be on the Thames Path. However, there are certain areas which are not open to cyclists, so riders have to dismount in certain sections. There is signage that informs the riders where to get off. Further along the route is Fulham Palace with the trip ending at Kew Gardens.