routes in and around edinburgh

Page may contain affiliate links. Please see terms for details.


I'm doing the glasgow-edinburgh charity run next month and I've started to do some longer runs. Well long for me ;) my commute to work is two-and-a-half miles. Did a 20 mile loop round edinburgh yesterday, and took the train to Linlithgow this afternoon and cycled home along the Union Canal.

I thought I might take the train out to other places like North Berwick and cycle home from there (I live in edinburgh). On the spokes map, though, the roads look like they'll be fairly busy. I'm wondering if there's anyone who can tell me which roads to avoid, nice scenic routes to especially seek out, or if there are any other routes around edinburgh that you'd recommend?



New Member
I have cycled out from Musselburg to North Berwick a few times. I have found the road from Wallyford - Prestonpans - Longniddry - Drem - North Berwick to be not too busy. There are plenty of options of back roads of this route.



Legendary Member
There are at least three sources of maps for cyclists in and around Ediinburgh.
I think you should find some quiet routes on the Spokes maps to get you started. Have you seen their website? They have maps which you can buy online.
Also the City of Edinburgh Council produces maps 'Exploring Edinburgh car free' which you can obtain by calling CLARENCE, at 0800 23 23 23
Sustrans also produce maps, later on you might try their 'Round the Forth' route NCN76, it is a 91 mile circular tour from Edinburgh over the Forth Bridge and back via Stirling.
I think you could also pick up these maps at local cycle shops in the city.


New Member
The North Berwick run is pretty nice.

There are a few ways you can do it depending on where you are in town. I live in Barnton so I get on the shared use path and take it to basically Ocean Terminal and then just go straight along the coast - the roads are fine. Or you can take the Innocent Railway from by the Commonwealth Pool and you come out near the Big W at Kinnaird Park. Then you go through Musselburgh - can be a bit busier but you're going straight so it doesn't really matter.

A nice route IMO is from here to South Queensferry then through the Hopetoun Estate and back along the canal - most of it on decent paths. There's only a couple of miles on roads and they're pretty quiet backroads - the bit from when you get out of the Hopetoun Estate to joining the canal that you've already done. If I remember it right it's about 25 miles around.


New Member
Mid Lothian/East Lothian are 'littered' with back roads which are great for cycling.Just buy a map of the area and have fun exploring:smile:.Should mention that some of the back road surfaces leave a little to be desired especially when the farmers are ploughing!!!;)


New Member
Oh, yeah, on the NB thing - I would go through Gullane and right along the coast rather than through Drem etc. Better roads for cycling IMO - although can be a bit windy. I did it into a ridiculous headwind in the autumn and it was hardgoing. It's usually wind behing going to NB though.


Well-Known Member
Gullane to South Gyle is my daily commute. Stick to the coast road B1398/A198 once you get past Musselburgh (heading west). There is also a route avoiding Musselburgh high street if you take the left turn by The Quay sports club (or similar) as you approach Musselburgh from the west. This takes you to a small bridge over the river then goes past the racecourse.

The wind can be a big factor in how enjoyable this route is. The wind tends to be westerly so you would be better cycling out and getting the train back if that is the case (and you don't like headwinds).

This route is only busy(ish) at rush hour and weekends. Alternatively, as mentioned above, East Lothian has loads of empty B roads away from the coast that are deserted.


Hi purpleR,
Like you, I'm doing the Glasgow/Edinburgh run and am getting slightly anxious that I'm not doing the miles yet !

I'm in Trinity and yesterday did a run up the cycle path to Cramond Brig, on to Craigiehall, along towards Kirkliston (avoiding the track parallel to the dual carriageway - too noisy imo), up past Royal Elizabeth Yard, through Dalmeny to SQ, over the FRB and back and retraced to Cramond Brig, then left on Whitehouse Rd, down to Cramond and along the front to home. 40km and about 1:50min.

My regular 'quicky' is to Cramond Village, Cramond Brig and return (40mins).
Dalmeny and back is about 1:15, depending on wind strength along Cramond foreshore.:smile:

Did this one on Sat with my good lady - on her NOO bike !
.... not too strenuous but the wind can make it harder.

There are lots of quiet roads around W Lothian as well, just get a map and go ! ... or plan your route on - where you can even work out the elevations, calories consumed etc ;)

My preference is for road routes, as I find too many people, dogs, slow family cycling groups etc on the tow paths and most of the cycle tracks.
But that's just me ... a grumpy old man ???:sad:

Maybe see you amongst the 3998 others doing the G-E ride !


Brilliant. Some great ideas here - thanks all. I especially like the warnings about the head winds - hadn't considered that. Roll on the weekend then! ;)

Scoosh, sounds like you're way ahead of me!


I've done the 'Pedal for Scotland' twice under very different conditions!

The first time (back in 2005) was from Edinburgh to Glasgow - the weather was utterly grim, we had a headwind in our face for the whole 50 miles and finishing was a relief.

The second time (2006) we started from Glasgow and it was absolutely perfick. Beautiful sunny weather and a following wind. I was with my girlfriend (it was her first 50 mile ride) so didn't go fast but I was very very tempted - it would have been fairly easy to get well under 3 hours that day.

I hope this year will be the same. I've not registered yet but I might join up on the day if I feel like it. Whatever the weather it was a laugh and most people were very nice. I have a feeling, though, that in the coming years it's going to turn out a bit like the L2B, with a lot of oversubscription and, how do I put it, not very competent cyclists.
Top Bottom