Cycle Routes & Maps

National Cycle Network in Strathclyde

Various routes of the National Cycle Network can be found in the Strathclyde area, listed below. Full details can be obtained from Sustrans. Sustrans cycle routes consist of a mixture of quieter roads and motor-traffic-free paths. Some paths are alongside main roads, while others, particularly in rural areas, can be some distance from the nearest road. Many of these paths are built on the trackbed of former railway lines, reusing previously derelict land. All routes are signed, with the signs including the National Cycle Network route number.

 7 
Cycle symbol Right arrow
Route 7: Sunderland - Carlisle - Newton Stewart - Ayr - Lochwinnoch - Paisley - Glasgow - Clydebank - Balloch - Callander - Inverness MAP
Within Strathclyde this long-distance route follows the Ayrshire Coast northwards to Kilwinning, then minor roads to Glengarnock where a former railway line is followed to Paisley. Riverside paths and minor roads take the route into Glasgow, then it follows the north bank of the Clyde, on various paths, to Dumbarton before following the River Leven northwards to Balloch. After Balloch it follows minor roads north-eastwards towards the Highlands.
Railway path route Cyclestreets photomap image
Mostly tarmac
 73 
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Route 73: Kilmarnock - Irvine - Ardrossan - Brodick - Lochranza MAP
The route heads west from Kilmarnock along a former railway line, then takes to the coast for the section between Irvine and Ardrossan. A ferry trip is needed to join the next section - on the Isle of Arran it follows the coast road from Brodick to Lochranza.
Railway path route Cyclestreets photomap image
Mostly tarmac
 74 
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Route 74: Gretna - Lockerbie - Lesmahagow - Larkhall - Hamilton - Blantyre - Uddingston MAP
This route takes in lengthy sections of downgraded A74 dual carriageway, where one carriageway has been converted into a cycle path, on the way from Gretna to Douglas. The section between Douglas and Larkhall has yet to be built, but recent work has seen sections of route in the Hamilton area completed.
Dedicated cycle track Cyclestreets photomap image
Mostly tarmac
 75 
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Route 75: Portavadie - Dunoon - Gourock - Kilmacolm - Paisley - Glasgow - Uddingston - Airdrie - Livingston - Edinburgh - Leith MAP
This coast-to-coast route starts at the ferry-port of Portavadie and crosses the Cowal Peninsula to Dunoon for the ferry to Gourock. Next it follows the waterfront from Gourock to Greenock, then joins a former railway line through to Paisley. NCN 7 is joined between Paisley and Glasgow, from where this route follows the River Clyde to Uddingston. After there is heads north to join the Monkland Canal through Coatbridge and then various railway lines to continue through Airdrie to Bathgate. Paths and minor roads take the route to Livingston and at Balerno the route joins the Water of Leith Way and then the Union Canal for the journey into Edinburgh. The final section to Leith is along another former railway line.
Railway path route Cyclestreets photomap image
Mostly tarmac
 78 
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Route 78: Campbeltown - Ardrishaig - Taynuilt - Oban - Fort William - Inverness MAP
This long distance route runs along the west coast of Scotland from the Kintyre Peninsula to Fort William, before heading through the Great Glen to Inverness. The section north of Oban is under development, with work currently being undertaken between Oban and Fort William. Much of the route is on-road, but there are also sections on the Crinan and Caledonian Canal towpaths.
Country lanes route Cyclestreets photomap image
Mix of tarmac and whindust
 753 
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Route 753: Gourock - McInroy's Point - Cardwell Bay - Lunderston Bay - Inverkip MAP
This route continues on from NCN 75 at Gourock and leads around the coast to Inverkip, partly on a shared-use footway and partly on a coastal path.
Shared use route Geograph image
Mostly tarmac
 754 
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Route 754: Clydebank - Kirkintilloch - Falkirk - Linlithgow - Edinburgh MAP
This route follows the Forth & Clyde Canal through north-west Glasgow and onwards to the Falkirk Wheel. It then follows the Union Canal to Edinburgh.
Path route Cyclestreets photomap image
Mix of tarmac and whindust
 755 
Cycle symbol Right arrow
Route 755: Drymen - Strathblane - Lennoxtown - Kirkintilloch - Moodiesburn - Glenboig MAP
The Strathkelvin Railway Path runs along the course of an old railway line past the base of the Campsies. At Kirkintilloch it connects with the Forth & Clyde Canal, and continues into North Lanarkshire to end at Glenboig. Another path links Glenboig to Gartcosh. This route will shortly be signed as Sustrans National Cycle Network Route 755. The route will later be extended beyond Strathblane to incorporate a piece of the West Highland Way to meet NCN 7 near Drymen.
Railway path route Geograph image
Mix of tarmac and dirt path
 756 
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Route 756: East Kilbride - Cathkin - Rutherglen - Glasgow - Kelvingrove - Kelvindale MAP
This inter-urban route leaves East Kilbride on the route of a former railway line, then follows alongside the main A749 road between Nerston and Cathkin. Once in Rutherglen, minor roads are followed through Overtoun Park and then the route ends up in Shawfield at Rutherglen Bridge, across from Richmond Park. The route has been extended along NCN 75 to Glasgow City Centre, then via the Connect2 route to Kelvingrove Park and up the Kelvin Cycleway to the Kelvin Aquaduct at Kelvindale where it meets NCN 754.
Suburban route Cyclestreets photomap image
Mostly tarmac
 40 
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Regional Route 40: Balloch - Luss - Tarbet MAP
The West Loch Lomond cycle path follows the western shore of Loch Lomond mostly on paths and sections of quiet and closed-off roads, parallel to the A82 road.
Path route Cyclestreets photomap image
Mostly tarmac
 41 
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Regional Route 41: Arden - Helensburgh MAP
A route mainly on roadside paths leaving the Balloch to Tarbet Regional Route 40 at Arden, next to Loch Lomond, and linking over the hill to Helensburgh.
Shared use route Geograph image
Tarmac surface
 42 
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Regional Route 42: Helensburgh - Rhu - Garelochhead MAP
A route partly on roadside paths and partly on-road from Helensburgh, through Rhu, then along the Gare Loch to Garelochhead, following the A814 road.
Cycle lanes Cyclestreets photomap image
Mostly tarmac
 82 
Cycle symbol Right arrow
Regional Route 82: Carstairs - Thankerton - Biggar - Peebles - Innerleithen MAP
The Tweed Cycleway takes various minor roads to link into the Borders, where it connects with NCN 1 which continues onwards to the coast.
Country lanes route Geograph image
Mostly tarmac

The National Cycle Network routes around Glasgow and Strathclyde can be found in this Sustrans leaflet.

Local Cycle Networks

Roadworks & Diversions

It is always useful to check for roadworks, so you can plan your own diversion in advance. Or would you rather cycle on a temporary road surface while other traffic attempts to squeeze between you and a line of cones?

Suggested Cycle Rides

See Past & Suggested Cycle Rides for a few routes for cycle rides, based on rides Go Bike has gone on in the past.

Cycle Journey Planner

Cycle Routes Websites

The following sites have suggestions for routes to cycle, and descriptions of signed cycle routes and cycle paths. Use them to help plan your route. There are alternatives to taking the main roads!

See also the Cycle Map and Journey Planner links.

Canal Links

Information from British Waterways on canals in Central Scotland, which can form pleasant and useful routes for cycling.

Some information and photos about the remaining section of canal in Paisley:

Cycle Map Links