The Broads National Park, also known as The Broads, is situated in the English counties of Norfolk and Suffolk, U.K. The park area is 303 square kilometers (117 sq miles) and is primarily located in Norfolk. The Broads National Park is also comprised of a network of navigable lakes – known as “broads” – and rivers. Overall, there are seven rivers and 63 broads, 13 of which are open for navigation and an additional three offering navigable channels.
If you’re interested in taking an e-bike trip in The Broads National Park, this article will answer all your questions!
Are e-bikes allowed in The Broads National Park?
Yes, visitors are allowed to use electric bikes in The Broads! However, cyclists must first ensure that the bike they are riding abides with the U.K.’s electric bicycle laws.
E-bikes, which are classified as electrically assisted pedal cycles (EAPCs), must meet the following requirements:
- They must have pedals that can be used to propel the vehicle
- The electric motor must have a maximum power output of 250 watts and should not be able to propel the bike when travelling more than 25 km per hour (15.5 miles per hour)
- They must show the power output or the manufacturer of the motor
- They must show the battery’s voltage or the maximum speed of the bike
E-bikes that meet these requirements must follow the road rules that are applied to traditional bikes.
How is The Broads National Park organized, is it bicycle-friendly?
Cycling is extremely popular in The Broads National Park, which means it is very well organized for cycling! Riders can choose from many routes in the park, which offers a number of lanes and trails that suit all types of cycling levels.
Here are the available trails in The Broads: Three Rivers Way Hoveton to Horning, Stokesby Loop, Grand Estate Cycle Route, Reedham, Thurne to Somerton, Loddon to Gillingham, Horsey to Bastwick, Bure Valley Railway Loop, Marriot’s Way, and Southern Broads Loop.
Where to stay during the trip?
The Broads and its surrounding areas offer a huge variety of hotels, campsites, and rental spaces to stay in!
Some top hotel options include the Ivy House Country Hotel, Hotel Wroxham, Holiday Inn Norwich, Keswick Hotel, Premier Inn Great Yarmouth, Fritton Arms, The Norfolk Mead Hotel, and Stower Grange. Visit Trip Advisor, Booking.com, and Visit the Broads for more hotel options!
If you’re interested in camping while here, there are 53 campsites to choose from, ranging from basic camping to caravan sites and glamping. Some options include Wardley Hill Campsite, Waveney River Centre, Wroxham Barns, Alderfen Marshes, Canal Camping, Hickling Campsite, Kessingland Camping and Caravanning Club Site, Long Beach Caravan Park, Rose Farm Touring Park, Brambells Glamping, and Cromer Camping. Visit the Campsites website to view more!
Where can I eat? Or should I take my food with me?
While you can certainly take your food with you while on your e-biking trip, there is also a wide range of eateries that you can visit while in The Broads and its surrounding regions.
For quick food, coffee, and tea, some top cafes include Staithe ‘N’ Willow Café, Vera’s Coffee Shop, The Galley at Horning, Garden Kitchen Café, The Tally Ho Tearooms, Forum Coffee House, Granary Stores and Tea Shop, and Deckside Café.
For restaurants and pubs, some top spots include Pedros Restaurant, Wroxham Barns Restaurant, Wayford Bridge Inn, Oakfired, Liberty, Number 14, A Slice of the Broads, Yim Siam, Oh Crumbs Sandwich Bar, Kens Traditional Fish and Chips, The Station Smokehouse, The Mariners Tavern, The Reedcutter, The Village Maid, The Shed, Kings Head Hotel Restaurant, and The Recruiting Sergeant.
Visitors can also choose from a plethora of breweries, vineyards, and distilleries for drinks, butcheries and fishmongers for local meat or fish, delis and bakeries for fresh goods, and farm shops and markets for local produce!
What gear should I take on the trip?
Regardless of if you’re taking your e-bike on a single or multi-day trip while in The Broads, it’s of the utmost importance to bring all the necessary bike and safety gear with you.
Essentials include: a backpack, a map, a helmet, your e-bike charger, sunglasses, water, a waterproof jacket or raincoat, bike-appropriate clothing (e.g. long and short sleeve cycling shirts, gloves, arm and leg warmers), sunscreen, a bike repair kit and pump, a first aid kit, and front and rear lights.
If you are planning to camp during your time here, you should also bring your tent, sleeping bag, booking information, extra clothes, food, dishware, cutlery, and a valid ID.
Where can I charge my e-bike?
There is currently no official list of e-bike charging stations in The Broads National Park, but cyclists may be able to charge their e-bike at some restaurants, campgrounds, cafes, and hotels. However, be sure to ask for permission first if choosing one of these options!
You can also refer to Chargemap to locate electric vehicle charging stations in the park and its surrounding areas.
What kind of e-bike do I need to ride in The Broads National Park?
The Broads National Park is known to be a gentle landscape comprised of lakes and rivers, and though it does include some rolling hills, it is not particularly mountainous in its terrain. Because of this, a city or commuter e-bike, fat tire e-bike, or hybrid e-bike will suffice!
Where can I rent an e-bike in The Broads National Park, or should I take one with me?
While visiting The Broads, there are a few options for visitors to rent an e-bike, which we will feature later in the article. Visitors can also take their e-bike with them, but should first check if it abides by the U.K.’s electric bicycle laws.
What else can I do while on an e-bike trip in The Broads National Park?
When visiting The Broads, there is no shortage of activities to do and sights to see!
If you’re interested in checking out the surplus of natural landscapes in The Broads, some top spots include RSPB Buckenham Marshes, Cary’s Meadow, Whitlingham Country Park, Heigham Holmes Nature Reserve, and a number of scenic towns and villages such as Great Yarmouth, Beccles, Bungay, and more.
For visitors who are interested in arts and entertainment options, some places to check out include BeWILDerwood Norfolk, Great Yarmouth Pleasure Beach, Wroxham Barns, Caesars Family Entertainment Centre, Pettitts Animal Adventure Park, and the Hippodrome Circus.
For museums and historic sites, options include Somerlyton Hall and Gardens, Roman Remains – 1 Bridge Street, Burgh Castle, Dragon Hall, Greyfriars Cloister, St Benets Abbey, Norwich Cathedral, Thurne Mill, the Wind Energy Museum, Museum of the Broads, and the Beccles & District Museum.
The area also includes a number of beaches and seaside locales, which include Horsey Beach, Lowestoft, Winterton-on-Sea Beach, Wellington Pier, and more.
Lastly, visitors can partake in many outdoor activities outside of cycling, including boating, hiking, kayaking, canoeing, sailing, angling, swimming, and birdwatching.
Read also: Check out best UK travel destinations by electric bike in this overview article.
What is the best time of year to visit The Broads National Park on an e-bike?
The Broads National Park experiences four distinct seasons in the year, and in general, August is the hottest month, where January is the coldest.
Winter runs from December to February, where the average daily temperatures range between 6 and 8 degrees Celsius. These months may also experience snow and rainfall, so we advise against visiting at this time of year for a cycling trip.
Springtime (March to May) experiences milder weather, with temperatures ranging from 9 to 15 degrees Celsius, but may also see heavier amounts of rain.
Summer (June to August) is the warmest time of the year, where average temperatures range between 17 to 21 degrees Celsius. However, this is also the busiest time of year for tourists. Lastly, autumn is pleasantly mild, with temperatures ranging from 9 to 19 degrees Celsius, with September being warmer than October and November.
Based on this, we recommend cyclists visit The Broads during late spring, anytime in summer, or early autumn months!
Resources to help plan your trip
To better plan your trip to The Broads National Park, visit the official park’s website here.
If you are looking to rent an e-bike while visiting The Broads, there are a few options!
First, Broadland Cycle Hire center offers e-bike options where cyclists can rent by the half-day, full-day, weekend/2 days, or full week.
Second, Torque E-Bikes, located in Norfolk, offers a wide range of e-bikes for half-day, full-day, and multi-day increments.
To plan your cycling routes in The Broads, you can view the full information about each trail on the park’s webpage here.
Do not miss short aerial clips highlighting some of the special places in the Broads National Park: