Explore the North Downs Way Riders' Route
Take time to ride the North Downs Way Riders’ Route, your way. The liner route across the Kent Downs and Surrey Hills Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty winds through lush countryside, rolling hills and leafy lanes, offering magnificent views and numerous historic sites to enjoy on the way 365 days of the year.
Quiet and almost traffic free, our riders’ route is easy to follow, family friendly and – above all – absolutely beautiful. It can be broken up into easy to manage sections so you have the choice of testing your skills as a cyclist on challenging hills or just enjoying the scenery on a pretty family day out on two wheels or even four legs!
Cycle the riders’ route
You’ll find accessible trails along ancient routes that pass eight castles, three cathedrals, three archbishops’ palaces, award-winning vineyards and breweries, sculpture trails, chocolate-box villages, and plenty of cosy country pubs and cafés.
It’s also easy to hop off and on the route with great accommodation options to choose from along the way and numerous train stations nearby, so you can zip down from London with your bike and be immersed in natural beauty in less than an hour.
You can find out more about travelling with bikes on trains with this helpful advice from Southeastern
Finding the perfect pit stop along the way is a breeze with Cycling UK’s accredited Cycle Friendly Places, and you can guarantee a warm welcome. Even if you’re not a seasoned cyclist, there are lots of cycle hire options available for people visiting for the day.
Horse riding on the riders’ route
The North Downs Way Riders’ Route is also available to horse riders. Further consultation work is underway to test and enhance the route for these audiences in the future. We advise horse riders to assess the routes based on their own requirements and knowledge.
As we all look for more sustainable ways of travelling, cycling and horse riding is a great way to get out and about in nature and discover new places.
If you want to experience the beauty of the Kent Downs and Surrey Hills at a gentle pace, or are simply itching to take your bike for a spin or your horse for an adventure, The North Downs Way Riders’ Route is ready when you are.
Moderate to Challenging
Hills / countryside / vineyards / woodland / coast / beaches
Historic / Beer & Wine / Pilgrimage
Fully rideable route
Riders' Route - Full Itinerary
Here’s everything you need to help you plan your trip on the North Downs Way. Click on the blue arrow tabs below for more information. To save this itinerary to view later, use the Save to My Rucksack button at the top of the page.
The North Downs Way is fully explorable on two wheels, or four legs thanks to our new Riders’ Route itinerary.
The 153-mile national trail through the Kent Downs and Surrey Hills Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) has undergone enhancement works in the past year to make it more accessible for both keen and amateur cyclists and horse riders. It can be tackled in one go for experienced riders, or broken up into sections.
Section 1 - Farnham to Oxted (48.8m/78.6km)
Section 2 - Oxted to Wye (64m/103km)
Section 3 - East Kent loop - Wye, Canterbury, Dover (55.6m/89.5km)
Section 3a - Alternative Wye to Canterbury route (10.4m/16.8km)
Optional Route - Rochester Loop with Upnor Castle (9.1m/14.7km)
Optional Route - The Cantii Way (145m/234km)
Food & Drink
Our route has numerous pubs, restaurants and cafes close by, with excellent food and drink options in the towns and cities you pass through.
For local beers, why not explore the Ales of the Trail?
Map & GPX Downloads
You can follow our Riders’ Route online and also download GPX map files to plan your trip.
Our online map shows the full Riders’ Route and allows you to filter accommodation options, food and drink venues, points of interest and cycling facilities along the way.
You can download the GPX map files for the entire route and key sections
If you prefer to break up the route into sections, you can do so using these files:
Optional Route – The Cantii Way (145m/234km) (links to more information on the Cycling UK website)
View the Rider's Route on Google Maps
The North Downs Way team have created a Google map showing the full route along with accommodation options, food and drink venues, points of interest and cycling facilities along the way.