Cycling routes that you can enjoy in and around Manchester this summer: traffic-free, towpath and city centre

Get your bike out of the shed or hire one and enjoy a cycle this summer.

Whether you have your own bike or need to hire one, a cycle is a great way to enjoy a summery day over the next few months.

In Manchester, you can enjoy a cycle route with access to the city centre for a visit to the shops and restaurants - or you can choose a more scenic route passing through parks and greenery.

We have put together a list of four great cycling routes, for all abilities, for you to enjoy this summer in Manchester.

Bridgewater Canal Cycleway

Bridgewater Canal Cycleway offers 18km of traffic-free cycling, while connecting Manchester City Centre with Altrincham.

The well-signed route also offers access to Salford’s Media City and the Intu Trafford Centre, with plenty of access points along the way.

The resurfaced canal towpaths are an all-weather surface, which is great to know for the unpredictable British weather.

Bridgewater Canal was Britain’s first canal to be built without following an existing watercourse.

You can download the map from TfGM here.

Fallowfield Loop

The Fallowfield Loop starts at St Werburghs Metrolink stop in Chorlton-cum-Hardy and finishes at Fairfield train station.

The 8.7km route goes through Levenshulme, and passes Debdale Park and Gorton reservoirs - meaning there are lots of great spaces to stop and enjoy.

The loop, built on a former railway line, is great for beginners as it is flat, well surfaced and largely traffic-free.

Thought to be Britain’s longest urban cycleway, the Fallowfield Loop is part of National Cycle Network Route 60.

You can see the route here.

Broughton Cycleway

Broughton Cycleway connects Broughton with Manchester city centre, with a 2km roadside route.

However, the cycle lane is separated from the road with traffic islands and reflective bollards in both directions.

This makes Broughton Cycleway the longest ‘light segregation’ scheme in the UK.

This route is a cheap alternative for those commuting to the city centre - but can also be enjoyed by riders who fancy a day out in the city.

You can download the map from TfGM here.

Ashton Canal Cycleway

Ashton Canal Cycleway connects Ashton-under-Lyne with Manchester city centre, with a 10km traffic-free route.

The route follows along Ashton canal, passing the National Cycling Centre, Snipe Retail Park, the Portland Basin Museum, Manchester City’s Etihad Stadium and Central Retail Park.

There are also four Cycle Hubs along the way, including one in Manchester’s Piccadilly Gardens, meaning you can drop your bike off and enjoy the surroundings.

And with 6km of LED solar-powered lighting along the canal towpath, it is a great option for an evening cycle.

You can download the map from TfGM here.