Wicken Fen - Upware Cycle Route, Cambridgeshire

Cycling trail

Try this 9-mile circular route, following part of the Lodes Way and the National Cycle-way route 11 to Upware, visiting various Lodes and Fens on the way. There is a pub to stop at on the way for some refreshment.


The hamlet of Upware is believed to have existed, and has been known by its present name, since at least the 10th century. Its situation on a navigable stretch of the River Cam would have been essential to its survival, and its name probably derives from a fishing weir on the river at the time. It has three Sites of Special Scientific Interest and a County Wildlife Site.

Wicken Fen - Group cycling along the Lodes Way across Burwell Fen


Upware Cycle Route


Wicken Fen Visitor Centre


Follow signs for the National Cycle Route 11 south from the Wicken Fen Visitor Centre, with Wicken Lode waterway on your right.


Continue to follow National Cycle Route 11 - follow the route through a sweeping left turn and over a low bridge, turn left after crossing the bridge.


Continue to follow National Cycle Route 11 - when the cycle-way divides, take the right fork and then follow the route though a sharp right turn. Ride in a straight line over two cattle grids and pass Priory Farm on your right. Continue until you come to a footbridge which crosses Burwell Lode.


Continue to follow National Cycle Route 11 - cross the footbridge and then turn left. Cycle gullies have been fitted to help you carry your bike over.


Continue to follow National Cycle Route 11 - a short distance after the footbridge the route bears right, follow the cycleway across Burwell Fen and over a bridge that crosses Reach Lode.

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Wicken Fen - Short Eared Owl


Continue to follow National Cycle Route 11 - the route passes a picnic area with figures of three fenland characters.


Continue to follow National Cycle Route 11 - the route crosses a track just after the picnic area, continue straight ahead -this part of the route can get muddy - especially in the winter.


Leave National Cycle Route 11 at the T junction and turn right onto a byway (Headlake Drove) towards Upware. This section of the trail is on rough tracks until you join the Upware Road (Step 11).


Follow the byway (Headlake Drove) through a sharp right-hand turn.


Follow the byway (Headlake Drove) through a sharp left-hand turn and continue towards Upware. This byway becomes Harrison's Drove after this turn.


Continue to follow the by-way (Harrison's Drove) which joins the Upware Road making a sharp right-hand turn at Duckett's Farm towards Upware.


Follow the Upware Rd through Upware towards the A1123. The road takes a sharp right-hand turn as it passes through the village. If you would like to stop for some refreshments, you will find the riverside "Five Miles from Anywhere no hurry" Public House at the end of a side road which branches off to the left from this bend in the road. The pub is well sign-posted. Continue on the Upware Rd road past Westmere Farm (on your right) and Field Farm (on your left) to the A1123.


At the end of Upware Rd you will come to a junction with the A1123. Cross the A1123 and almost immediately turn left onto the road, which passes Red Barn Farm on your left.. Follow the road, which veers to the right and becomes an un-made track, known as Shaw's Drove. At the end of the track turn right onto Padney Drove, which is part of National Cycleway No.11.


Continue to follow National Cycle Route 11 which eventually becomes Lower Drove then Lower Rd. At the end of Lower Rd, Cycle Route 11 will take you right onto Chapel Lane. At the top of the road turn right onto the A1123 (High Street) and then left onto Lode Lane and back to the Wicken Fen Visitor Centre.


Wicken Fen Visitor Centre

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Wicken Fen - Upware Cycle Route, Cambridgeshire


 A section of this route is on rough tracks and there is a main road to cross.

Wicken Fen - Upware Cycle Route, Cambridgeshire

How to get here

Wicken Fen National Nature Reserve Lode Lane Wicken CB7 5XP
By road

South of Wicken (A1123), 3 miles west of Soham (A142), 9 miles south of Ely, 17 miles north-east of Cambridge via A10

Wicken Fen - Upware Cycle Route, Cambridgeshire

Facilities and access

  • WC's in Learning Centre behind Café and main carpark
  • Parking £3 NT members free - 120 yds
  • Café
  • Cycle Hire