Some people cycle to release the pent-up frustrations and stresses of daily life, others do it purely to get from A to B, while others do it for the health benefits and the meditative nature of it. No matter why you do it, one thing is for sure, it’s never boring, especially when it comes to the numerous options of trails to embark on.

This couldn’t be truer for those that find their inner peace on mountain biking trails through unspoilt areas, and if you are looking for some inspiring cycling trips in Europe for your next MTB, these are four of our favourites:

The Scottish Borders, the United Kingdom

Scotland is probably not at the top of your list of destinations when you are considering your options for cycling trips in Europe, but it should be. The Scottish Borders have some of the best (and most underestimated) MTB trails around and should be on your list when you are considering options for cycling trips in Europe.

Glentress Forest is one of the best possible places for MTB enthusiasts of varying abilities where Innerleithen’s extremely difficult terrain is best left for the advanced cross country cyclists. Innerleithen is also known for the British Downhill and the Scottish Downhill series’ and is a place that will make the adrenaline junkies hearts’ sing. While the cycling trails here are phenomenal, it must be said that due to its geographic location in the north, downpours of rain are common. It is best to prepare for muddy and wet conditions.

Sierra Nevada, Spain

Spain is no stranger to cyclists and is home to some of the best trails on earth, which is why it makes the perfect destination when considering cycling trips in Europe. The Sierra Nevada, with its rugged and wild terrain, offers incredible trails and routes for the MTB fans. The wonderful thing about the Sierra Nevada, especially for those cyclists that can get bored with the same kind of scenery, is the range of terrain you are likely to cover; from rugged and dry rocky terrain to gorgeous pine forests.
With a range of descents which can often be a little technical – so make sure you are up for the challenge before you embark on this journey. The area can be traversed without a guide, but due to wild and vast area of the Sierra Nevada, we do recommend exploring it with a mountain biking tour company to facilitate a safe journey. The incredible weather in this region makes this an accessible cycling destination year-round.

The Alps, Switzerland, Italy and Germany

A list of destinations perfect to choose when cycling in Europe would not be complete without a mention of the Alps, and particularly the area that shares borders with Switzerland, Italy and Germany. Here the MTB fan will have numerous trails to choose from, but one of the very best has to be the Transalp.
This challenging multi-stage marathon spans over 600km and has a total 19,000 elevation gain – in short, it’s not for beginners. For those who are not interested in training for hours every day and would like to forgo the oxygen tanks, but will still like to enjoy a ride through the Alps, then the Portes du Soleil is highly recommended.

Fjord, Norway

While not the most commonly travelled destination for people embarking on cycling trips in Europe, Norway is one of the most beautiful destinations out there. We think it should be, however, because, in Norway, the avid mountain biker has so much to look forward to. We suggest venturing out to Stryn and Åndalsnes, as they are just such phenomenal areas.
Expect to traverse lands littered with pine forests, gorges, snowy slopes, flawless fjords and unbelievable lakes. The terrain is quite rough and certainly more for those inclined towards adventure and a challenging ride. Because MTB trails are still relatively new here we suggest hiring a guide. As a note, the best times to ride in Norway are typically from the end of May to September.
If you are interested in exploring other trails in Europe then we suggest downloading our handy guide: 15 Top European Cycling Destinations. In it, you will find some of the very best cycling trails and destinations in Europe. Alternatively, you can contact us directly to find out more about cycling in Spain, specifically along the Costa Blanca, where you will be spoilt for choice when it comes to cyclist-friendly hotels in Calpe.