How to get into cycling in Bristol
We've rounded up the best places in Bristol to pick up a bicycle - and a few cycle paths, too!
As well as being a more environmentally-friendly way to get around, cycling can also bring a whole host of health and wellbeing benefits - from boosting your immunity to decreasing your risk of disease.
Riding a bike increases your heart rate and gets those feel-good hormones pumping; research shows that being outside in the fresh air each day (instead of cooped up in a car or bus) can have a positive impact on your mental health, as well as giving you a chance to practice mindfulness or take a break from your daily routine.
We’re hoping to inspire more people to try life on two wheels. Here’s how to get into cycling in Bristol…
Where to buy a bike in Bristol
So if you fancy a greener, healthier and often cheaper way to get from A to B, it’s time to get cycling!
But where should you start if you’re looking for a new bicycle?
Here are some of our favourite places in Bristol to bag yourself a bike:
Where to buy an electric bike in Bristol
Have you considered an ebike?
Get all of the benefits of the fresh air and reduced transport emissions with a little less pedal power by going electric – ebikes are popular with people who have longer (or steeper!) commutes, or want to use their bike as an alternative to a car wherever possible.
Simply detach the battery to charge it up, then enjoy the added boost as you cruise around.
You can pick up an ebike in Bristol from many general cycle shops, as well as electric specialists like:
Repair, recycle or donate your old bike
If you’re trading your current bike in for a newer model, or you’ve got an old bike gathering dust that you no longer use, don’t chuck it!
Charities like The Bristol Bike Project and Julian House can repair and recycle your old bike to give it a new lease of life, saving it from landfill and helping people from the local community to get their life back on track.
Cycle routes around Bristol
Once you’ve got your wheels sorted, it’s time to head off into the great outdoors.
With plenty of green spaces surrounding the city, as well as some unexpected urban trails, Bristol is bursting with exciting cycle paths to explore. Our favourites include the Bristol to Bath Railway Path, the River Avon Trail and the Frome Greenway Loop.
Getting into cycling
Regular bike riding can give you a real sense of achievement as you watch your skills improve, and many cyclists have cited that getting out on their bike has had a positive impact on their self-esteem, while reducing stress and anxiety levels.
If you’re less confident on wheels, you can find plenty of local clubs for beginners on Better By Bike, a useful hub of cycling information which covers the West of England region. They even have a handy cycle planner to find local routes that you’ll love.
As a low impact sport, cycling is easier on the joints than alternatives like running, and with so many different routes to choose you can take things at your own pace – whether you fancy an adrenaline-pumping downhill track, or a more sedate cruise along the canal path.
The easiest way to make cycling part of your daily routine is to use your bike instead of a car or bus for short local trips, like popping to shops or visiting a friend. Leave your trainers by the door to remember to hop on the bike whenever you get the chance, and enjoy the many benefits of your healthy new habit!
Bike schemes for businesses
If you're an employer who'd like to support more of your employees to cycle to work, there are plenty of schemes available to help!
Each scheme offers different benefits, so that you can choose the one that's right for your workplace and your team.
Many fall under the Government's Cycle to Work initiative, and include:
You can find out more about Bike Week, and plenty of fun ways to take part, here.