10 Cycle Routes in Cairngorms

Explore the Magnificent Cairngorms National Park: Your Cycling Paradise with a Plethora of Scenic Routes.

Renowned for its breath-taking beauty and diverse terrain, the Cairngorms stand tall as a top destination for cycling enthusiasts. Boasting a myriad of tracks and trails, this enchanting range in Scotland caters to riders of all levels, offering a rich tapestry of exhilarating adventures. From adrenaline-pumping routes that wind through dense forests and feature thrilling jumps to serene trails perfect for families and leisurely riders, the Cairngorms presents an array of options to suit every cyclist’s preference.

In this comprehensive guide, we have curated a collection of our favourite cycle routes, unveiling the boundless wonders of this spectacular region. Get ready to embark on an unforgettable cycling journey amidst the awe-inspiring landscapes of the Cairngorms.

Ballater to Aboyne

If you’re as happy on the road as you are off it, then the 36km route between Ballater and Aboyne is the one for you. Taking approximately three hours to complete depending on your approach to the off-road challenges, this is an ideal route for a family or group of cyclists with a degree of experience. It takes in tarmac surfaces along the main road and forest trails making protective equipment essential.

Find out more here.

Glenlivet Trail Centre

The Glenlivet Trail Centre has everything you need to get your cycling buzz in the Cairngorms. From family-friendly trails to those purpose-built for experienced mountain bike riders to get some real airtime, the trail centre will provide plenty of fun whichever route you choose to take on. With a number of exhilarating single track runs to build up some speed and plenty of forest trails where you’ll be tested to the limit, the Glenlivet Trail Centre also offers spectacular scenery for your rest stops!

Find out more here.

The Old Logging Way: Aviemore to Glenmore

A perfect cycling route for families and those relatively new to off-road cycling or mountain biking. Covering four miles along “The Old Logging Way”, this is a purpose-built off-road course that will test your skills and help you on your way to becoming a more competent mountain biker. Located in the very heart of the Cairngorms national park, you can ride through the beautiful woodland and take in the scenery at your leisure.

Find out more here.

Lecht Trail Centre

With two specially designed trails for novice and experienced mountain bike riders, the Lecht Trail Centre is growing in popularity all the time. The Red Fox trail is designed for the more competent – and confident – riders, with plenty of off-road challenges and jumps to contend with; while the Blue Hair trail is designed for novices providing an opportunity to hone your skills before moving up. The trails cover almost 2km and there is even a skills park for you to warm-up beforehand.

Find out more here.

Laggan Wolftrax Trail Centre

You can take it steady or go head-first into the numerous challenges at the Laggan Wolftrax Trail Centre. With trails catering to everyone from first-timers to experienced mountain bikers you can learn how to tackle the forest trail surfaces or get the adrenaline flowing as you get some serious air-time over the jumps. Routes vary in length as well as difficulty, with the shortest measuring 3.6km and the longest 13km so there’s plenty for you to try as your confidence builds.

Find out more here.

The Speyside Way: Nethy Bridge to Boat of Garten

The Speyside Way is a popular route for walkers and cyclists alike, with some of the most picturesque sections of the Cairngorms national park visible – and accessible – from the various roads and tracks. From a mountain biking perspective, the route between Nethybridge and Boat of Garten offers a range of gradients and terrains to test your off-road skills. Spanning 5-miles it’s a good challenge for novice and expert riders.

Find out more here.

Burma Road, Aviemore

Covering 25-miles and filled with steep inclines and challenging terrain the Burma Road in Aviemore might sound daunting; but for keen cyclists it’s a must. There are stunning views around every turn and there is plenty to test your on and off-road skills. With a total ascent of just over 600-metres it takes you to one of the highest points in the national park, so you’ll need to get your legs pumping, but it’s the kind of route that will leave you with a sense of accomplishment at the end.

Find out more here.

Kincraig Loop: Inverdruie to Kincraig

Situated around two-miles south of Aviemore is the start of the Kincraig Loop. Inverdruie might only seem to be a small village in the Cairngorms, but it’s the start of a major cycling route that attracts novice and experienced riders alike. It may only last around an hour, but the Kincraig Loop packs a lot into such a small amount of time. Previous riders would describe the route as “undulating” rather than “hilly” throughout the 23km circuit. As with most parts of the region you’ll find some wonderful views of the mountains, lakes and Scottish countryside.

Find out more here.

The Lecht Road: Aviemore to Inverness Trail

So you’ve tested yourself over short and medium distances, and across a range of terrains, now it’s time to test out your endurance. The Lecht Road – also known as the Aviemore to Inverness Trail – is an 85km route that will test your riding skills and your fitness in equal measure. Just to keep you on your toes, there is also one steep climb and descent, so you’ll need to work out when to push it and when to save your energy in preparation.

Find out more here.

Glenshee Mountain Bike Track

A purpose-built mountain track in the heart of the Cairngorms national park – what more could any keen off-road cyclist ask for? The 3.2km course may only take you ten minutes to complete, but the chairlift will take you to the top over and over again so that you can learn from your mistakes, learn the route and take time out of each of your runs until you’re happy. This is a great mountain bike track for you to learn more about your own ability, the capabilities of your bike and how to approach key points on the trail.

Find out more here.

That’s our comprehensive guide to remarkable cycling routes in the Cairngorms. By checking out these routes, you’re equipped with a passport to adventure!