Best Cycling Routes in Asia

If you are tired of a typical holiday journey by the conventional modes of transport, this one’s for you.

Travelling around a country by bike is conceivably a less common, but nonetheless worthwhile experience you should definitely consider. There’s something keenly different about hopping from destination to destination on a bike. Perhaps, as you whiz down the road on two wheels, you get to see the country in a whole new light.

Here are some of the most scenic cycling routes you can explore in Asia.

1. Angkor Wat Complex, Cambodia

Top: The Angkor Wat in its full glory. Bottom: Cambodian monks traversing the temple complex.

This stunning archaeological site is beautifully preserved, often coming across as awe-inspiring. Constructed in the 12th century, the temple complex holds substantial historical and artistic significance. The site is huge, and is home to various age-old temples; apart from the famous Angkor Wat, travellers should also visit the other structures; the Bayon Temple, Ta Prohm Wat or the Preah Ko are just some of the many monuments in the vicinity. Moving around on foot will hardly give you adequate time to explore the area. Journeying around on bike however, can not only cut the travelling time, but also accord you the most spectacular of experiences.


2. Shimanami Kaido, Japan

Top: The Shimanami Kaido connecting two islands, photo courtesy of Hiroaki Kaneko. Bottom: The cycling route provides wonderful scenic views, photo courtesy of redlegsfan21.

The Shimanami Kaido is a 60km-long road, beginning on Honshu, Onomichi City, and cuts across six islands, before the route ends at Shikoku, Imabari City. Indulge in the beautiful seaside and island scenery as you cycle along the breath-taking stretch of well-maintained pathway. Bicycle rental is uncomplicated; there are various rental terminals available along the entire course.


3. Jaipur, India

Top: Many pink coloured buildings can found in the city of Jaipur. No wonder it is dubbed the “Pink City”! Bottom: The Jal Mahal appears to be floating on the water body.

Distinctive rose-coloured buildings dot the city founded in 1727, giving her the nickname “Pink City”. Travel around the city on a bicycle as you explore the many visually striking landmarks. The City Palace lies nonchalantly in the city centre; the Hawa Mahal, or Palace of the Winds never ceases to amaze; and the Jal Mahal, partially submerged in the water, exudes an ethereal glow. A faster-paced expedition within the city is bound to astonish, with the perpetual light rosette hint certain to overwhelm you.


4. Qinghai Lake, China

Top, bottom: The vast expanse of the Qinghai Lake is said to be a thought-provoking sight.

3200m above sea level, and spanning 4600 square km, this alkaline lake about 80 miles from Xining serves up a picturesque landscape. The cycling route in the vicinity of the lake is vast, and would require 5 to 7 days to complete. Seek inner peace, as the uninhabited, serene surrounds rests calmly in the backdrop. However, do note that due to the high altitude, you might encounter difficulties breathing; be sure to watch out for your health and safety.


5. Ilju Road, Jeju Island, South Korea

Top: Sunset views. Bottom: The Cheonjeyeon Waterfalls. 

Jeju Island in South Korea is a natural treasure trove. Lush greenery, interesting rock formations and fascinating coastal views are just some of the majestic sights on display. Discover the best of Jeju, as you cycle along Ilju Road, where you are welcomed by the magical allure of South Korea’s favourite island. Given the well-built infrastructure, your cycling journey will hopefully be smooth and seamless.

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