Our green spaces are ideal for safe traffic-free short rides and are a great way to get around the larger ones. However, they offer limited opportunities for the keener rider. Most of the country parks lie on routes that form part of the National Cycle Network (NCN) so they are handily placed for you to explore this wider network.
Here's our quick guide to the cycling opportunities at and from each of our green spaces.
Parc Cwm Darran There is a choice of 3 designated and waymarked cyclocross trails that are also fun to ride on a mountain bike. These vary between 1.2, 2 and 2.5km in length but all have the same level of difficulty. The routes are a mixture of different surfaces including tarmac, grass and shale with a variety of small climbs and descents and optional obstacles to tackle. Parc Cwm Darran lies two thirds of the way along NCN Route 469 from Bargoed to Fochriw if you want to explore further and follow the link to Bargoed Woodland Park.
Parc Penallta Away from the flatter areas of the Events Arena and the valley bottom, cyclists are faced with climbs and descents to link the two to make a circuit around the park. Not only are they steep but the path surfaces can be quite rough so please exercise care and look out for other path users. The Celtic Trail, NCN Route 47, runs through the valley bottom offering rides over the impressive Hengoed Viaduct and down towards Sirhowy Valley Country Park and Waunfawr Park. Westwards and Route 47 heads towards Parc Taff Bargoed and the Taff Trail (NCN R8) at Quakers Yard.
Sirhowy Valley Country Park Cycling within the park is dominated by NCN Route 47 as it follows the former railway track. Starting from Full Moon, a round trip to the Halfway House at Gelligroes and returning by a parallel route running on the east side of the river from Pont Lawrence Rees to Nine Mile Point as an alternative will give you an 8.5m / 13.5km ride. Longer rides to the north along Route 47 take you along the Three Parks Trail carry you across Hengoed Viaduct and on towards Parc Penallta. For the intrepid mountain biker the parish roads and forestry tracks in the adjoining National Resources Wales woodland will offer spills and thrills as you climb to the top of the valley sides where you'll be rewarded with fantastic vistas.
Bargoed Woodland Park What better way to explore Bargoed Woodland Park than on two wheels. With a variety of circuits of tarmac, grassed and stone dust paths to choose from you can make up your own routes. NCN Route 468, Pengam to Butetown, starts from our car park at Pengam at the south end of Bargoed Woodland Park. Follow it northwards to the head of the Rhymney Valley or branch out along NCN Route 469 into the Deri Valley and Parc Cwm Darran for a refreshing drink at the Visitor Centre café.
Riverside Park There are limited cycling opportunities within the Riverside Park other than NCN Route 4, part of the Celtic Trail. Whilst you could set off for London or Fishguard on Route 4, more achievable objectives might be to follow The Green Lady Trail that links Nantgarw and Machen.
Morgan Jones Park NCN Route 475 runs through the park from its junction to NCN R4 at Caerphilly Castle as it heads up the Aber Valley to Senghenydd.
Waunfawr Park Also located on the Celtic Trail, Route 47 of the National Cycle Network. A good place for learning to cycle but further exploration along the Celtic Trail does involve on-road sections.
Cwmcarn Forest As a major centre for mountain biking, Cwmcarn is a mecca for the thrill seeker on two wheels. For details of what this area has to offer the ardent mountain biker visit the Cwmcarn Forest website.
Cycling in the county borough Aside from the promoted trails and networks, Caerphilly is packed with natural paths through the countryside utilising bridleways, restricted byways and forest roads. Ordnance Survey maps show these routes and are an invaluable tool for navigation. Road cycling is also increasingly popular and many events and races make use of the famous climb to the top of Caerphilly Mountain.
Cycling Clubs There are many clubs and social groups involved in cycling locally in the county borough. Details of these can generally be found on the internet.
Van Road Pump Track The Pump Track on Van Road in Caerphilly is a set of jumps and berms suited to bmx and freeride bike riders who can learn and practice their skills. Parking is in the National Resources Wales Coed Parc-y-Van car park, with a short walk or ride to the track. Visit their Facebook page at Van Rd Trails.