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Bike with Confidence: Traffic Free Cycling Routes in Bridgend

July 21, 2021

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Garw Valley
Hop on your bike and head out to explore the breadth of Bridgend’s natural reserves and landscapes with this selection of top traffic-free cycling routes across the county. Unearth the long mining heritage in Llynfi, spot some of the 1,000 species of wildlife that live amongst Parc Slip Nature Reserve or tackle the climb to the epic peaks of each of the three valleys.

Go the distance with cross-county day trips

The Celtic Trail

Spanning across countries and totalling at 697.8 km in distance, Sustrans Route number 4 starts from London travelling right through to west Wales, guiding cyclists right through the heart of Bridgend County enroute. Pedal along traffic free paths that weave through tranquil woodlands, nature reserves and ascending the heights of Ogmore, Garw and Llynfi Valleys for unbeatable views out towards the coastline.

Safaris on two wheels in Parc Slip

From spring each year, Parc Slip Nature Reserve begins to flourish with indigenous flora and fauna. Combine your next cycling day trip with a child-friendly South Wales safari along the 4km of traffic free cycle paths which stretch across the reserve. This section of the Celtic Trail is ideal for uncovering some of the 1,000 species of wildlife which lives amongst the ponds, grasslands and marshes of Parc Slip. Park up at the visitor centre for a drink and a cake and to learn more about the birds, insects and flowers which can be found here and get involved with educational activities such as pond dipping.

Extend your stay with camping at Our Welsh Campsite

After a day on the saddle, put your feet up and relax with a camping stay at Our Welsh Campsite. Tucked away between the rolling hills, this family-friendly site sits on the river’s edge on a working sheep farm just off the Celtic trail at Glyogwr, offering an authentic experience of life here in rural Wales.

Tranquil train lines

The Ogmore Valley Trail

Explore local heritage, charming community culture and breathtaking natural beauty - spend a day exploring Ogmore Valley following the heritage trail. Previously untouched documents, photos and historic articles have been transformed into a route spanning the length of the scenic valley. Cycle the route to discover local history, cultural sites and the flora and fauna that call Ogmore their home. your journey will take you through Blackmill past the iconic Grade II listed finger post towards the meeting point of River Ogmore and Ogwr Fach. Cross the Pont y Frithwaun Bridges, three crossing points, one of which dates back to 16th century and was one of the original two roads across the area. Further North, Ogmore Vale and Nant-y-Moel nestle below the Bwlch Mountain. Nat-y-Moel was the first village in Wales to have electric street lighting and its Gwalia grocery stores have been rebuilt at the St Fagans National Museum of History.

Discover the spirit of cycling in Llynfi

Pedal down the Llynfi Valley Trail from Maesteg through The Spirit of Llynfi Woodland which traverses the valley’s Eastern slopes. Explore the peaceful habitats of marshlands, meadows and healthland by bike, be sure to stop off one of the numerous installations which reveal the area’s long mining history. Keep an eye out for the grand oak sculpture of the Keeper of the Colliery who celebrates the lives and works of local miners who once worked in the valley.

Bike through Garw Valley’s beautiful Bryngarw Country Park

Starting in the tranquil Bryngarw Country Park and ending in Blaengarw, this gentle, eight mile route takes cyclists through a scenic trail of old railway track, deep forests and countryside views. Hungry cyclists can enjoy plenty of pit stops along the way, including a stop at a cafe half way along the route at Pontyrhyl. You’ll also get the chance to spot an array of wildlife along this traffic free route - head off the beaten track to explore the green hilly glades of the Garw Forest, a haven for bird watchers.

Beach-side biking with Porthcawl’s coastal cycling trail

A trip to Porthcawl in the summer would be incomplete without taking the seaside town's cycle route for a spin. Running from Trecco Bay to Rest Bay, the brand new route will help you explore what the town has to offer, from its golden sands to its ocean views. Mostly off road, little ones can use the 2.5 mile path to catch a wave, play on the beach or even stop for an ice cream along the way. A variety of bikes can be hired from the Rest Bay Watersports Centre, or you can cycle here, pick up a rental surfboard, and start riding the Welsh waves!  

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