What does it mean to be a cycling-friendly city?
Charles Black is enjoying the sights and sounds of Europe by bicycle. In this post, he compares cycling in London to cycling in Copenhagen.
Over to Charles…
One of the reasons I'm traveling to Europe is to understand first-hand what a 'cycling-friendly city' means in practice.
You can read about it, you can be told about it and you can dream about it. But until you experience it, you really struggle to understand.
I have now ridden in two cities over here. The first was world-famous cycle-friendly city Copenhagen. The second was London, which has the awesome London Cycle Super Highways.
Cycling in Copenhagen
Cycling in Copenhagen, Denmark, is everything it's made out to be.
First, there is a great culture. Motorists, pedestrians and cyclists work together seamlessly on the road.
There is a degree of respect and awareness I haven't seen anywhere else.
Secondly, the facilities are just outstanding.
A small example below are the bins that make it easy to deposit your magnesium-rich banana en route!
Now take a look at the rather ample bike parking facilities!
Overall, Copenhagen was great on bike.
Cycling is just made easy. You can hire a bike, people know how to ride and motorists know how to drive!
For our business, it also reinforced something of great value. Even in the world's acknowledged cycling centre, there still isn't an easy way for businesses to connect to the cycling lifestyle. That's where we believe CycleLifeHQ can add a lot of value.
Cycling in London
Next up was London. Having been to London in the deep dark past, I was somewhat surprised that it had made great steps along towards being a cycle-friendly destination.
Cycling in London is now fantastic. While the drivers and pedestrians still have some challenges - I ran into two errant tourists on my bike ... and had to move around numerous cars and lorries parked in the dedicated cycle lanes, it was stunning to be able to ride through the centre of London on a bike.
This has largely been achieved through the deployment of Super Cycleways that provide a myriad of options along the main trunks to and through the city centre.
While you still have to wind your ways through the thin and narrow back streets, it really is quite liberating to see what can be done.
If they can do it in London, then they can absolutely do it in Sydney and Melbourne!
It's been a great experience to ride in both Copenhagen and London. Each is stunning in its own way.
A final shout out to Look Mum No Hands Cycle Cafe and Workshop.
If you are in London - make the effort. It has a great culture and vibe as well as delicious coffee and food :)
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