Way of the Roses

The Way of the Roses is a spectacular coast to coast cycle route which takes you past some of the best cultural heritage and stunning natural beauty in northern England. It’s a special cycle route that passes through the red rose county of Lancashire and the white rose county of Yorkshire.

The Way of the Roses is a spectacular coast to coast cycle route which passes through both the red rose county of Lancashire and the white rose county of Yorkshire.

The Way of the Roses is a special cycle route that was built to celebrate 15 years of the National Cycle Network.

Most cyclists choose to travel from west to east as it often provides a tailwind, but the route is well-signed in both directions and has good rail connections at both Morecambe and Bridlington.

If travelling west to east, the hardest hill climbs you will face are between Settle and Brimham Rocks, with the hill out of Settle being the biggest challenge.

If you decide to ride the route east to west the hardest section is climbing Greenhow Hill out of Pateley Bridge.

Wherever you start and finish, make sure to take your picture next to the Way of the Roses information board and sign at either end.

As you cycle the route you’ll pass some of Britain's most stunning countryside and fascinating heritage sites.

Such areas include the Lune Valley, the Forest of Bowland Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB), Yorkshire Dales National Park, Nidderdale AONB, the Vale of York and the Yorkshire Wolds.

A great place for a refreshment break and one of the most interesting sites on the route is the Fountains Abbey & Studley Royal World Heritage Site near Ripon.

With many other great attractions such as the historic city of York, the Way of the Roses cycle route is a journey to remember.

The route has been crafted so you can enjoy some of the best that northern England has to offer - from rich cultural heritage to stunning natural beauty.

Make sure you stop off along the way to enjoy the array of museums and historic buildings or simply to admire the wonderful scenery.

Please take extra care where this route crosses railway lines at level crossings.


Distances for the Way of the Roses

  • Morecambe to Lancaster: 4 miles
  • Lancaster to Clapham: 23 miles
  • Clapham to Austwick: 1 miles
  • Austwick to Settle: 7 miles
  • Settle to Cracoe: 12 miles
  • Cracoe to Pateley Bridge: 15 miles
  • Pateley Bridge to Ripon: 15 miles
  • Ripon to Boroughbridge: 10 miles
  • Boroughbridge to York: 22 miles
  • York to Pocklington: 18 miles
  • Pocklington to Hutton Cranswick: 19 miles
  • Hutton Cranswick to Driffield: 5 miles
  • Driffield to Bridlington: 19 miles



Aldwark Bridge is scheduled to be closed from 17 April 2023 to 31 October 2023 for maintenance.

During this period, you will need to plan an alternative route across the River Ure.

Check the Aldwark Bridge website for updates.

Please note

We have taken all responsible steps to ensure that these routes are safe and achievable by people with a reasonable level of fitness.

However, all outdoor activities involve a degree of risk. To the extent permitted by law, Sustrans accepts no responsibility for any accidents or injury resulting from following these routes.

Walking and cycling routes change over time. Weather conditions may also affect path surfaces.

Please use your own judgement when using the routes based upon the weather and the ability, experience and confidence levels of those in your group.

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