Get spotting autumn wildlife

children on bikes on a traffic-free path

There's loads of nature you can spot in autumn, download our handy guide for more info

Two people walking on a traffic-free path

Autumn is a lovely time of year to go for a walk and watch the leaves change colour

deer crossing a cycle path near a cyclist

See if you can spot deers this autumn in one of the parks or forests where they live

Autumn is a wonderful time of year to explore nature. Just wrap up warm, get out onto the National Cycle Network, and use our handy spotter guide to help you find wildlife you can’t see at any other time of year. Use our handy spotter guide to help you find wildlife you can’t see at any other time of year.

We've chosen these rides as some autumn inspiration for great days out but you can also search our online mapping for routes near you.

Watch rutting deer

The Tamsin Trail travels through Richmond Park, London, which is a perfect place to spot one of the 300 red and 350 fallow deers that roam here.

See the changing of the leaves

The New Forest Ride is a short six mile ride through the New Forest that has impressive displays of autumn colours due to its unique mix of ancient, ornamental and native trees. Or alternatively the Cardiff to Castell Coch route takes you through Bute Park Arboretum in Cardiff, which is awash with colour at this time of year.

Watch migrating birds

Throughout autumn look to the skies for signs of migrating birds. The Exe Valley Ride in Exeter is the perfect place, offering some fantastic views along the River Exe and Exe Estuary, a beautiful wildlife reserve. Surrounding the estuary are marshes, which provide a year-round haven for thousands of birds and are looked after by the RSPB.

Spot seal pups

Atlantic grey seals begin breeding in September and continue right through until November. See if you can spot seal pups using the Inverness to Dingwall route, it takes you past the Seal and Dolphin Centre at North Kessock, one of the best places in Europe to observe seals in their natural habitat.

Go on a mini beast hunt

Choose one of our Greener Greenways routes and go on your very own beast hunt. These routes are part of our project to protect and enhance biodiversity along some of the traffic-free sections of the National Cycle Network. 

Go bat spotting 

Our wildlife volunteers have spotted bats on the Perth to Almondbank route - head out at dawn or dusk and see if you can spot them too. You begin the ride on the North Inch in Perth alongside the River Tay, Scotland’s longest river, and follow it for nearly two and a half miles before turning alongside the River Almond.

More inspiration for walking and cycling adventures:




Discover the National Cycle Network

Whether you walk, cycle, run or ride a horse, there's plenty of opportunity for adventure and getting involved!

children cycling

Cycling is a great way to have fun as a family and these routes have lots of things to see and do along the way.

cyclist admiring route view

Love the National Cycle Network? Sponsor your favourite mile and help us keep it in top condition.

Check out our volunteer vacancies in your area.

kids out on a bike ride

Your donations will help maintain the National Cycle Network and provide safer routes for everyone to enjoy.