“Bristol to Bath Railway path is one of the UK’s Top 10 Best Cycling Routes” – Cosmopolitan Magazine (2014)
Entirely traffic-free route, Riverside pubs, train return option, sculptured water fountain.
A simple out and back route on the traffic-free Bristol Bath Railway Path. You can make this route shorter by turning around wherever suits you.
A: Begin at the path entrance on Brassmill Lane. Follow the straight path out to Saltford, crossing a few bridges and overlooking the countryside.
B: Saltford is a good place to stop, home to a number of great riverside pubs. The Bird in Hand backs onto the cycle path, a good stop for family food or a rest and quick game of boule!
SALTFORD BRASS MILL
Check out the Brass Mill – a scheduled ancient monument which has recently been restored, after closure in 1925.
C: Bitton Railway Station. There are toilets, a café, restaurant and the chance to ride on a steam train and plenty of stands to lock your bike to should you fancy a picnic on the grass.
THE GAIUS SENTIUS FOUNTAIN
This sculpture stands at the spot where the railway intersected a Roman road. It was created in 1992 by Gordon Young in the form of a thirsty Roman Legionnaire. Great for filling your water bottle (button hidden to left)!
D: After crossing the road at the Toucan crossing there’s another chance for a rest break and some light refreshment at the “Warmley Waiting Room” café (open 10.00-16.00 year-round). Their latest feature is a Doctor Who-style Tardis toilet: the “Who loo”, complete with flashing light and Tardis sound effects. The flashing light on top of the Tardis alerts people someone is using the bathroom!
E: From here you can access Warmley Forest Park (a former clay quarry), Siston Common, and the Dramway: where horses used to pull coal-laden carts, “drams”, down to the River Avon.
F: Bear right to remain on the Railway Path. Then stay on the path and cross two bridges.
G: The Avon Cycleway, an 85-mile circular route around Bristol, joins here and forms part of National Cycle Network route 3 extending all the way down to Lands’ End in Cornwall.
H: Staple Hill Tunnel. The name may derive from the old English word ‘steap’ meaning ‘steep’, or it may have described a longforgotten
pillar or standing stone – called a ‘stapol’.
I: If you fancy exploring further – here’s a good place to leave the path towards Eastville Park and the River Frome, another beautiful cycling location. You may have noticed that you are now on the descent into Bristol, downhill from here on…
J: The cycle path ends in Newton Park. You can turn around here and return along the path back to Bath (making the entire route 26 miles), or you can cycle 1 mile (5-10 mins) to Bristol Temple Meads and catch the train back into the centre of Bath.
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