(in association with hostelbookers.com)
Scotland is a country of vibrant cities and mile after mile of stunning moorland, still lochs and soaring mountains. And given the countless cyclists who come here in search of everything it has to offer, it's hardly surprising that hostels in Scotland are amongst the most bike-friendly in the world.
For the majority of backpackers and independent travellers in Scotland, there's one city whose siren call is almost impossible to resist: Edinburgh. And few places in the world are as blessed with top-quality budget accommodation as the Scottish capital. In fact, when it comes to choosing Edinburgh accommodation, the biggest problem is knowing where to start.
Smart City Hostel Edinburgh, High Street Hostel and Edinburgh Central Hostel all have plenty to recommend them by. But cosy, friendly and with some great views of Edinburgh Castle, Castle Rock Hostel is arguably the standout choice. Chuck in ample bike parking facilities, and you've got a great hostel for the cyclist in Edinburgh. There also plenty of hotels in Edinburgh and you can find some on Hostelbookers.com to suit your needs.
For those looking to get away from the hustle and bustle of the city, Edinburgh's dotted with beautiful green spaces. Just outside the city, meanwhile, the countryside is riddled with some great cycling routes for those looking to escape Edinburgh by bike.
Moving on from Edinburgh, the rest of Scotland opens up. And whether you're cycling, driving, taking a train, or setting off on foot, it's hard not to be impressed with the absolutely stunning country that stretches away in front of you.
As a general rule, by the time most people have checked into their hostel, Glasgow has already won them over. Further to the north, Aberdeen hostels see their fair share of hardy backpackers and cyclists looking to tackle the wonderful 'Speyside Way' cycling route.
But Scotland doesn't begin and end with its three big cities. And as you get out into the countryside, the prospects for the cyclist just keep getting better and better. Isolated rural hostels - a godsend for the weary cyclist - are very much a Scottish speciality. A great resource to find the best trails is Britishcycling.org.uk.
Not far from the west coast town of Fort William, Glen Nevis Hostel is spectacularly situated in the shadow of the mighty Ben Nevis, and has some great mountain-biking at Aonoch Mor. And the top-class Scottish cycling hostels don't stop there either.
Sitting on the misty banks of Loch Ness, Morag's Lodge is a perfect choice for biking around the loch - and maybe even indulging in a bit of monster-spotting. An hour or so's train journey north of Inverness, Carbisdale Castle Youth Hostel is one of the most dramatically located hostels in Scotland.
A little further up the coast, Helmsdale Hostel offers a bike shed for you to store your bike, and wood-fired stoves to keep you warm should the weather close in. Then right up the top of the country and staring out across the Pentland Firth, John O'Groats Hostel is popular with bird-watchers, walkers and cyclists alike. It's the pinnacle of a spectacular country for the cyclist - or anyone else for that matter!
A bedroom in the Edinburgh SYHA hostel in Haddington Place
Aberdeen Hostel is a traditional Victorian house in the city's Queen's Road.
The SYHA hostel in Glen Nevis makes an ideal base for exploring Lochaber or climbing Ben Nevis.
Carbisdale Castle is the home of the SYHA hostel in Culrain.
Up-to-date listing of all local rides.
Edinburgh Bike Paths: A Cyclist's Guide
How to get from A to B on two wheels.
Escape Edinburgh by Bike
These routes will get you out of the city quickly and safely.
I want to go on a bike ride but I haven't got a bike
How to hire a bicycle - or buy one second hand - in Edinburgh
The Edinburgh to St. Andrews (Lepra) bike ride
Everything you need to know about this popular event.
Cycling Edinburgh is maintained by Mike Lewis.
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