The Wandle Trail: scenic cycles

River Wandle at Morden Hall Park

Crossing three boroughs in south London, the Wandle Trail follows the twists and turns of the pretty River Wandle, taking in over 10 parks, wetlands, and a nature reserve. 💚

Whether you want to practice in peaceful surroundings or blow away the cobwebs, the Wandle Trail is the perfect cycling retreat from the City. 

About the Wandle Trail

The Wandle Trail passes through Croydon, Sutton and Merton, and joins the Thames at Wandsworth. The whole trail is 12 miles, but if you fancy a shorter version, there’s stations at each end and throughout the trail so it’s easy to reach and plan the route you want to cycle.

The River Wandle lining the trail is famous for its brown trout but you can also find chub, roach and perch. It’s a brilliant place to spot newts, frogs and herons and reconnect with nature. 🌱

How to get to the Wandle Trail

There’s plenty of places to join and leave the trail. If you want to do the full route, you can start or finish at either Wandsworth Town or East Croydon.  

Don’t forget to check if you can take your cycle on public transport!

Earlsfield to Hackbridge

The 7-mile section from Earlsfield to Hackbridge is flat and mainly traffic-free, covering quiet roads with a few crossings over main roads.  

At Earlsfield, take a left out of the station and look for the sign for National Cycle Route 20. From there it’s a short cycle through quiet back streets to the start marked on the Wandle Trail map. 📍

Spot the unique way-markers and follow numbered gateways past viewing platforms and numbered bridges – each individually designed. The hand-carved wooden benches along the route make a perfect place to stop and admire the view. 😍

Top spots

Merton Abbey Mills – the only surviving working mill from almost 100 that used to line the River Wandle. This site was once home to the famous Arthur Liberty printing works and textile designer and activist, William Morris. It now includes restaurants, cafes, bars and shops and hosts music events and a weekend market. 

Deen City Farm – just before the halfway point is Deen City Farm and Riding School. If you’re there at lunchtime you can help feed the pigs! And if you’re hungry, the friendly café serves delicious home-made food. 

The Rose Garden at Morden Hall Park with a National Trust sign
Credit: National Trust Images / John Millar

Morden Hall Park – this beautiful former deer park is managed by the National Trust. It’s the last stop on the ride and one of the few remaining estates that used to line the River Wandle during its industrial heyday. 

At the end of the park, turn right onto the crossing and onto Cycle Route 20.  Look out for the beautiful white iron bridge. 👀 

White iron bridge over the River Wandle at Morden Hall Park
Credit: National Trust Images / Andrew Butler

Follow the sign to Hackbridge along the canal for ten minutes and at the end turn left onto Hackbridge road. This takes you straight to the step-free Hackbridge station and back to London. 

Or if you’re returning via Earlsfield, you could finish up at Bean and Hop, a cycle-friendly café with plenty of cycle racks. 🚲

More cycling routes 

Explore more of south London with a loop around Dulwich Park or try more traffic-free cycle rides. 🗺️

Share your favourite routes 

With so many beautiful parks and routes across London, let us know your favourite places to go cycling in London in the comments. 👇

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