Cycling fans know how liberating it can be to ride down a bike path and enjoy the sights of a city without having to deal with crowded public transportation or traffic jams.
Yes, this is what comes first to mind when considering bicycles. By using this form of transportation, we can protect the environment, improve air quality, and reduce the damage that cars cause in cities. Of course, in addition to helping the earth and the city, cycling is also good for your health. But riding a bike between places is good for your health.
Also, as governments worldwide try to cut carbon emissions, more and more places are making it easier for people to give up their cars in favor of bicycles.
Facts about the Most Bicycle Friendly Cities in the world:
- The Netherlands has the most bicycles per person in any country worldwide.
- The highest-ranked American city, San Francisco, is number 39 on the chart, which shows that no American cities are in the top 10.
- During the COVID-19 pandemic, there has been a minor increase in the number of individuals choosing cycling as a mode of transportation over buses and trains.
- By 2027, the market for bikes worldwide is expected to be worth $34.6 billion.
- In 2021, cyclists from around the globe cycled 10 billion miles and climbed 480.2 billion feet.
- There are bike-share programs in over 600 cities around the globe, with new ones launching annually. Shanghai and Hangzhou have the greatest bike-sharing programs in China.
Ninety cities were selected for their willingness to contribute to and work on initiatives to improve cycling infrastructure and safety. Instead of ranking the best and worst cities for cyclists. The study evaluates the cycling climate in these 90 cities based on cycle user-related factors. Ninety cities were evaluated using the index-
- How many separate bike lanes exist in a single city
- Theft Rates
- Number of “cyclable” days per year
- Score for infrastructure
- Amount of bicycle stores
- Security and crime
- Events awareness
For the study, the digital insurance company Luko chose a group of cities worldwide, including well-known cycling hubs and a few smaller cities with developing bicycle infrastructure. Then, they examined each location based on several variables determining whether a city is cycling-friendly. They began by examining the percentage of bicycle users, a great indicator of the cycling environment. In addition, they examined fundamental requirements such as safety, bicycle-related crime, and road infrastructure.
The ranking identifies the best cities for bicycling, with higher total scores indicating better outcomes. As of 2022, the most bicycle-friendly cities are-
1. Utrecht, Netherlands (77.84)
The Netherlands’ Utrecht ranked top of the list. About 51% of the people in the Netherlands live in Utrecht, which has a lot of good cycling routes and a lot of sunny days.
Utrecht comes in first because it gets high scores in many different categories, such as the number, quality, and investment in bicycle infrastructure, the number of bicycle shops, and the low number of traffic accidents. Also, the city is special because so many people ride bicycles there.
Regarding bike sharing, Utrecht is not one of the top 10 towns. But 94% of people there have at least one bicycle in their homes. In addition, the city has more than 300 kilometers of bike paths, including several protected bike lanes. It has also taken innovative steps to improve cycling infrastructure, such as installing traffic lights that prioritize cyclists and building elevated bike paths that make it safe for cyclists to cross busy intersections.
In addition to these steps, Utrecht has taken other steps to encourage cycling, such as building safe places to park bikes and incentivizing people to buy and use cargo bikes to get around.
Utrecht is one of the most bike-friendly towns in the world. Bicycling accounts for more than 50 percent of all trips in the city. The city government is still spending money to make Utrecht even better for bikers. They plan to add more bike lanes and improve infrastructure to make cycling safer and easier.
Utrecht’s efforts to encourage riding have been noticed, and the town has won several awards for its bike-friendly policies. These include the European Commission’s European Mobility Week Award and the “Fietsstad” (Bicycle City) award from the Dutch Riding Federation.
In addition to its infrastructure, Utrecht has several programs to support cycling, such as free bike repairs and maintenance, cycling lessons for school children, and community events to celebrate cycling culture.
Studies show that bikers spend more money at local businesses than drivers, so Utrecht’s efforts to get more people to ride bikes have also helped the city’s economy. Because of this, the city government has made riding a key part of its plan to improve the economy.
2. Munster, Germany (65.93)
The German City of Münster comes in second on the list. According to the index, the German City scored well on the events metric because it regularly hosts bike-related events, which noted that the city has a low rate of cycling fatalities.
Germany’s Münster is regarded as having the best bicycle infrastructure. Numerous cyclists dominate the cityscape throughout the entire year, therefore it is not surprising that the cycle paths and signposting are excellent. That means that cyclists can quickly get around even in a large city.
The German city of Münster has a long history of promoting cycling as a means of transportation. The town has an extensive network of bicycle paths, cycling promotion initiatives, and a robust cycling culture.
Münster is renowned for its extensive bicycle infrastructure, which consists of over 500 kilometers of bicycle paths and multiple protected bike lanes. The city also has a bike-sharing system called metropolradruhr, which allows residents and visitors to hire bicycles quickly and affordably.
In addition to its infrastructure, Münster has implemented several programs to promote cycling, including free cycle repair services, cycling lessons for schoolchildren, and community celebrations of cycling culture.
Over forty percent of all journeys in Münster are made by bicycle, making it one of the world’s most bicycle-friendly cities. The municipal government continues to invest in making Münster bicycle-friendly, with plans to add more bike lanes and enhance existing infrastructure to make cycling safer and more convenient.
There are twice as many bicycles as people living in Münster. The largest bicycle station in Germany is located at the central train station. In addition to 3,500 parking spaces, the bike station provides bike rentals, workshop services, and bike-washing facilities. All of Münster’s attractions are easily accessible by bicycle, and the city is also a stop on some of the Münsterland region’s most breathtaking themed routes.
3. Antwerp, Belgium (60.51)
Antwerp, Belgium, is third on the list. It is one of the most affordable locations to purchase a bicycle to keep. It also has about 4,000 bike paths and a bike-sharing program for the whole city.
In Antwerp, cycling is a great thing to do. It is small, and each year the infrastructure gets better. The city is proud that “many people ride cycle daily because there are more than 500 kilometers of safe and comfortable bike trails.” Highways, paths, and the numbered junction network make it easy and quick to ride a bike. You can also get a trip planner for your PC or phone and a bicycle map of the city.
In addition to these steps, Antwerp has taken other steps to encourage cycling, such as building safe places to park bikes, giving residents incentives to buy and use cargo bikes for transportation, and giving schoolchildren free lessons in riding.
Antwerp is one of the most bike-friendly towns in the world. More than 20% of all trips in the city are made by bike. The city government is still spending money to make Antwerp even better for bikers. They plan to add more bike lanes and improve infrastructure to make cycling safer and easier.
4. Copenhagen, Denmark (60.46)
Copenhagen ranked fourth as the most bicycle-friendly city. The Danish capital is safer for cyclists and bikes due to a low incidence of bicycle theft and “car-free days.” Moreover, due to the city’s major investments in cycling infrastructure, most residents who cycle continue to do so throughout the long and challenging Danish winter.
However, why do fifty percent of Copenhageners choose to travel by bicycle? Is it entirely part of their culture, DNA, or something else?
Daily, cyclists in Copenhagen travel approximately 1.44 million kilometers. In Copenhagen, bicycle travel to work or school now accounts for 49% of all travel, up from 35% just ten years ago. The recent increase in cycling over the past decade can be credited to sustained municipal investment.
The city is going to invest over €40 per individual in bicycle infrastructure. This number shows that cycling is taken seriously, despite being overwhelmed by public transportation and automobile infrastructure. Moreover, 97% of Copenhagen residents are satisfied with the city’s cycling conditions, indicating that something is working.
Cycling is effortless, as you will discover during your travels through Copenhagen (and beyond). There are four fundamental categories of cycling infrastructure: painted bike lanes, separated cycle tracks, traffic-calmed streets, and green routes that receive you where you need to go without a map.
5. Amsterdam, Netherlands (60.24)
Amsterdam ranks fifth worldwide. You may have expected that the Dutch capital would rank first, but Amsterdam’s safety rating of over one thousand incidents per one hundred thousand cyclists may explain why.
Even though Amsterdam has always been a leader in cycling, the city’s infrastructure was in danger of being destroyed by automobiles in the middle of the 20th century, making the Dutch capital a challenging bicycle environment. During this period, Amsterdam experienced rapid modernization, and urban planners generally believed that automobiles should be prioritized over bikes, resulting in extensive road construction. These decisions prompted widespread protests, with protesters claiming that cars in Amsterdam posed an unnecessary danger and frequently caused fatal accidents.
Amsterdam has a lengthy history of promoting cycling as a mode of transportation, making it one of the most well-known bicycle-friendly cities in the world. The town has an extensive network of bicycle paths, cycling promotion initiatives, and a robust cycling culture.
Amsterdam is renowned for its extensive bicycle infrastructure, which consists of 500 kilometers of bicycle paths and multiple protected bike lanes. OV-fiets, the city’s bike-sharing system, provides residents and visitors with a convenient and inexpensive way to rent bicycles.
In addition to its infrastructure, Amsterdam has implemented several programs to promote cycling, including free cycle repair services, cycling lessons for schoolchildren, and community events celebrating cycling culture.
Over fifty percent of all trips in Amsterdam are made by bicycle, making it one of the most bike-friendly communities in the world due to the city’s dedication to cycling. The city government continues investing in making Amsterdam even more bike-friendly, with plans to add bike lanes and enhance existing infrastructure to make cycling safer and more convenient.
Cycling had surpassed driving in Amsterdam by the 1990s, and the city continued to expand while keeping cyclists’ requirements in mind, resulting in the current urban layout. As a result, 38% of all journeys in Amsterdam are made by bicycle, and the city’s bike network is still expanding.
6. Malmo, Sweden (55.88)
The Swedish city of Malmo is ranked sixth overall with a score of 55.88. However, the city has a particularly low bicycle death rate due to its outstanding infrastructure and numerous bicycle-friendly activities.
Connecting Malmo are 560 kilometers of bicycle pathways, more than any other Swedish city. In Malmö, bicycle use has increased consistently over the past decade and now accounts for about 26% of all transportation.
The town has also taken steps to improve cycling facilities, such as making bicycle streets prioritizing cyclists over cars and putting up traffic lights that give cyclists the right of way.
Malmo has done more than build infrastructure to encourage riding. For example, they have free bike repair services, bike-sharing programs, and cycling events to celebrate cycling culture.
Malmo is one of the most bike-friendly towns in the world. More than thirty percent of all city trips happen by bicycle. The city government is still spending money to make Malmo even better for bikers. They plan to add more bike lanes and improve infrastructure to make cycling safer and easier.
The city wants to meet goals set for cyclists and cars through bicycle-friendly urban planning. In addition, the city of Malmö attempts to improve environmental conditions and traffic safety. Overall, Malmo’s commitment to riding as a way to get around has made it a more environmentally friendly city.
7. Hangzhou, China (52.55)
The Chinese city of Hangzhou appears unexpectedly in the top ten. It is the only non-European city to reach the top ten. 30% of its population comprises cyclists, and it beats most of its competitors regarding cycle sharing.
Hangzhou received a high score for bike-sharing accessibility due to the city’s “red cycles,” a bike-sharing system that has served the city for 14 years. With over 3,700 stations and thousands of red bicycles, the Hangzhou Public Bicycle was the world’s first and largest bike-sharing system.
In March 2018, the system was digitized, introducing intelligent lock technology and permitting users to park their bikes in designated spaces adjacent to bike docks if none were available. In addition, Bluetooth geofencing devices were installed in designated parking spaces and displayed on mobile applications.
People can bind their mobile phones to their Hangzhou citizen card or bus pass with the public bike rental function enabled to reserve a red bike without making a deposit online. Then, to rent or return a bike, scan the QR code using the app or the WeChat microprogram.
The system includes the concept of “the last kilometer” to ensure that users can easily ride bicycles from public transit stops to their final destinations. In addition, there are family cycles for parents and children.
8. Bern, Switzerland (48.76)
Bern is ranked eighth on the list. The Swiss capital has made major investments in high-quality bicycle infrastructure, rates highly for bike sharing, and frequently hosts “no-car days.” Additionally, the number of cyclist fatalities in the metropolis is incredibly low.
Even though only 15% of Bern’s population cycles regularly, the lowest percentage among the top 10, the city’s roads were rated 98.73 out of 100 for their exceptional quality. In addition, the city was praised for its car-free days and shared bicycle accessibility. However, this area is for all cyclists, including those on e-bikes and traditional bicycles.
Bern has more than 200 bike paths, including several protected bike lanes. The city has also taken steps to improve cycling facilities, such as making bicycle streets prioritizing cyclists over cars and putting up traffic lights that give cyclists the right of way.
In addition to building infrastructure, Bern has implemented programs to encourage ridings, such as free bike repair services, bike sharing programs, and incentives for people to buy cargo bikes and use them for transportation.
Bern is one of the most bike-friendly towns in the world. More than 18% of all trips in the city are made by bike, thanks to Bern’s dedication to cycling. The city government is still spending money to make Bern even better for bikers. They plan to add more bike lanes and improve infrastructure to make cycling safer and easier.
9. Bremen, Germany (47.81)
The ninth-ranked city is Bremen, a popular place for people who ride cycles. It is largely level, and many bike paths connect the city to nearby towns. Also, Bremen is the first city in Germany to have a whole “bicycle zone” in its Neustadt area. This zone has a speed limit of 30 km/h, gives bikes priority, and lets people ride next to each other.
Bremen, which has more than 500,000 people, has more bikers per person than any other big city in Germany. Bremen is a great place to ride a bike because it has 821 kilometers of bike paths. Cycling is good for the environment, your perspective on life, and your health.
With services like WK-Bike and Call-a-Bike, renting a bike is easy. You can expect a place that is bike-friendly. A historically significant site that is being turned into a bike zone with better parking and different road surfaces.
10. Hannover, Germany (46.70)
Hannover ranked top 10 most bicycle-friendly cities. It is known as a bike-friendly city because it has over 700 kilometers of bike paths, a bike-sharing program called “Call a Bike,” and public transportation that is easy to use by bike. The city has also taken steps to slow down traffic and holds regular events to support cycling as a healthy and environmentally friendly way to get around.
This year, Hannover came first because it has great facilities and events that encourage cycling, like “no car days.” Cycling around Hannover is one of the best routes to learn more about this part of Lower Saxony.
Hannover has also done several other things to encourage riding. For example, the city has made it easy for commuters to leave their bikes at important transportation hubs and switch to another mode of transportation. The city has also made bike-friendly zones where cars are limited or not allowed, and riders get to go first.
People have noticed that Hannover is trying to get more people to ride bikes. As a result, the city has won several awards for its bike-friendly policies, such as the European Transport Week Award from the European Commission and the “Blauer Kompass” award for sustainable transport from the German Federal Environmental Foundation.
11. Strasbourg, France (45.45)
Strasbourg was ranked eleventh. Strasbourg is the bicycle capital of France due to its 6,500 self-service bicycles and 600 kilometers of bicycle paths. Trabourg combines the advantages of residing in a large city with those of a nearby small town. Eurometropolis, the City of Strasbourg, and neighborhood organizations organize numerous annual cycling promotion events. The city has implemented other initiatives to promote cycling, including free cycling lessons, incentives for businesses to become more bike-friendly, and regular events to commemorate cycling culture.
Strasbourg’s dedication to cycling has garnered several awards, including the European Mobility Week Award from the European Commission and the “Ville à Vélo” (Bicycle-Friendly City) award from the International Cycling Union.
Additionally, Strasbourg has instituted several innovative measures to promote cycling. For instance, the city has installed “bike boxes” at intersections to provide a secure space for cyclists to wait at traffic lights in front of automobiles, thereby reducing the risk of collisions. Additionally, the city has introduced a “bike highway,” a dedicated cycle path that connects Strasbourg to the German town of Kehl, making it simpler for cyclists to commute between the two cities.
The municipal government has committed to expanding its bicycle infrastructure, with plans to add 300 kilometers of bike lanes and paths by 2030. In addition, the city has set an objective of increasing the percentage of bicycle trips to 20% by 2030, up from 16%.
12. Bordeaux, France (45.42)
Bordeaux is at position 12. Bordeaux, located on the west coast of France, has some of the best bicycle routes in the country. In addition, Bordeaux is renowned for its extensive wine selection and rich culinary heritage—a comprehensive cycling history in the metropolis.
Bordeaux, in France, is a bicycle-friendly metropolis with a well-developed network of bicycle paths and initiatives to encourage people to ride bikes as a way to get around.
The city has over 200 bicycle paths, including several protected bike lanes. In addition, it has introduced VCub, a bike-sharing system that allows residents and visitors to rent bicycles easily and affordably.
The city has implemented additional initiatives to promote cycling, including introducing a bike-friendly speed limit in certain areas, developing secure bicycle parking facilities, and the provision of incentives for businesses to become more bike-friendly.
Bordeaux has received several awards for its bicycle-friendly policies, including the “Prix de la Ville la Plus Cyclable” (Most Bicycle-Friendly City Award) from the French Ministry of Ecology and the “European Mobility Week Award” from the European Commission.
It is ideally suited for cyclists exploring a new, culturally rich location. Bordeaux’s cycling routes are scenic coastal paths interspersed with undulating vineyard paths. In addition, numerous attractions within the region are accessible by bicycle.
The city government continues to invest in bicycle-friendly infrastructure. For instance, the city has announced plans to expand its bicycle infrastructure by adding more bike lanes and improving existing infrastructure.
13. Hamburg, Germany (44.97)
Hamburg ranks 13th with 44.97 out of 100. Biking is, therefore, one of the best ways to explore a city because it is the most flexible mode of transportation and allows you to focus solely on the locations that most interest you.
It has more than 1,900 bike paths, including several protected bike lanes. The city has also taken steps to improve riding infrastructure, such as making bike streets prioritizing cyclists over cars and putting up traffic lights that give cyclists the right of way. In addition to building bike-friendly infrastructure, Hamburg has implemented programs encouraging ridings, such as free bike repair services, bike-sharing programs, and incentives for people to buy and use cargo bikes for transportation.
Hamburg is one of the most bike-friendly towns in the world. More than 15% of all trips in the city are made by bike. The city government is still spending money to make Hamburg even better for cyclists. They plan to add more bike lanes and improve facilities to make cycling safer and more accessible.
The city is evolving to be more bicycle-friendly. That is made possible by several city initiatives intended to make Hamburg a cycling city.
14. Leipzig, Germany (44.25)
Leipzig is 14th on the list. On the Global Bicycle Cities Index, several German cities, including the venerable cultural stronghold of Leipzig, hold enviable positions. It also has a superb bicycle network that is experiencing rapid expansion.
Over 400 kilometers of bicycle paths and several protected bike lanes make it simple for cyclists to navigate the city. In addition, the nextbike bike-sharing system in Leipzig provides residents and visitors with a cost-effective and convenient method to rent bicycles for short journeys.
In addition to these measures, Leipzig has implemented additional initiatives to promote cycling, including creating secure bicycle parking facilities, incentivizing businesses to become more bike-friendly, and organizing regular events to celebrate cycling culture.
Leipzig has received multiple awards for its bicycle-friendly policies, including the European Mobility Week Award from the European Commission and the “Fahrradfreundliche Kommune” (Bicycle-Friendly Municipality) award from the German Cycling Association.
The city administration continues to invest in bicycle-friendly infrastructure in Leipzig. For instance, the city has announced plans to increase the number of bike lanes and enhance the existing infrastructure to make cycling safer and more convenient.
15. Bristol, United Kingdom (43.76)
Bristol ranked fifteenth among the most bike-friendly cities. It is the first Cycling City in the United Kingdom, recognizing its increasing reputation as one of the most bicycle-friendly cities in Europe. In addition, Sustrans, the nation’s leading non-profit organization dedicated to sustainable transportation, is headquartered in Bristol, the hub of the nation’s national bicycle routes.
The city has over 400 bicycle paths, including several protected bike lanes. In addition, it has introduced a bike-sharing system called YoBike that allows residents and visitors to rent bicycles easily and affordably.
Bristol has implemented additional initiatives to promote cycling, including creating secure bicycle parking facilities, the provision of incentives for businesses to become more bike-friendly, and hosting recurring events to commemorate cycling culture.
Bristol has received numerous distinctions for its bicycle-friendly policies, including the first “Cycling City” designation in the United Kingdom in 2008 and “European City of the Year” from the Academy of Urbanism in 2015.
The city government continues to invest in bicycle-friendly infrastructure in Bristol. For instance, the city has announced plans to increase the number of bike lanes and enhance the existing infrastructure to make cycling safer and more convenient.
Here is a list of the most bicycle-friendly cities worldwide according to the Luko Global Bicycle Cities index:
|39||San Francisco||United States||35.68|
|57||Los Angeles||United States||30.93|
|67||New York||United States||28.1|
|84||Hong Kong||SAR China||22.24|
Lastly, You can get better both physically and mentally by riding a bike. Cycling is important in the fight against climate change and in making towns better. Since they were first made in the 1800s, bicycles have proven to be great ways to get around and a good way to live a healthy life. They are very important to the fight against climate change right now.