The Isle of Man – For the Perfect Cycling Experience

From absolute beginners to the most hardened of road racers and mountain bikers, the Isle of Man is a haven for cyclists young and old.

But did you know the Isle of Man has a strong cycling heritage which has seen “Manxies” ride into success, including Olympic gold medallist Peter Kennaugh and multiple Tour de France stage winner Mark Cavendish?

Whatever your level you’ll find a route to suit, from enjoying the sea air as you cycle the length of the promenade in the capital of Douglas – perfect for families – to testing yourself on the gruelling ‘Witches Barrel’, a fearsome 12-mile mountain bike track in the centre of the Island with more than 2,800 feet of climbing!


A family of four cycling on Douglas Head smiling at the camera

Ride the coastal trails and take in the stunning cliffs, sweeping sea views and sandy vistas. There are plenty of pathways meaning you can explore the miles-upon-miles of stunning coastline the Island has to offer. Don’t forget to keep an eye out for marine life out at sea or some of the rare bird colonies that call the Manx cliff sides home.


A family of four cycling through a plantation on the Isle of Man

Head into one of the many plantations to try out some of the specially-designed routes through the unique Manx landscape. South Barrule Forest in the south of the Isle of Man has some great mountain bike routes which are an ideal introduction for first timers or youngsters.


Two cyclists on the Mountain Road with a view looking out over Ramsey Bay

While the world-famous TT course is usually associated with motorbikes, if you’re up for a challenge the views along the route are worth every pedal. The ride can be a little challenging with steep climbs, winding country roads and speedy descents but there’s plenty of stop-off points along the way to admire the great views or grab a bite to eat.  


A couple sat on the coastline looking out to sea with their pedal bikes lay next to them

One of the favourite cycling routes, particularly for families, is the Heritage Trail, which follows the old steam railway line between Douglas in the east and Peel in the west. The 11-mile route can be completed in around an hour.

The Isle of Man has a fascinating history which is celebrated in heritage sites around the Island. If you fancy a break from the saddle just jump in your car and head to Peel to uncover the story of the Vikings at the House of Manannan and stunning Peel Castle.


We’ve created a special video showing exactly why the Isle of Man is perfect for a cycling holiday….


When you travel with us, your journey with your bicycle is made easy. Not only is it simple, it’s also great value as you can bring your bicycle for just £10 each way.

If you’re travelling as a foot passenger, simply ride on board, stow your bike in the designated area on the vehicle deck, and then relax in one of our lounges while enjoying the crossing, ready to ride off when you reach Douglas.

Or, if you’re bringing your vehicle, load your bicycle in your car or on a bike rack, and don’t forget to check out one of our great Car Offers.

For more inspiration for where to ride, there’s a selection of recommended routes available to download from Visit Isle of Man. There’s a choice of paths to suit all abilities, with advice on difficulty grading, distance and estimated time included on each downloadable route map so you can easily drive to the starting point for your chosen ride.

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