Thinking about cycling in the UAE? Here’s how you can get involved with the revolution…

From casual cycling, to competitive races, the UAE offers so many options when it comes to biking around the emirates. You don’t even need to own your own bike, with the increased number of rental options becoming available. The country also has shared plans for increased numbers of tracks for cycling in the UAE.

Here’s everything you need to know about cycling in the UAE.
Where to cycle

Car-free tracks
Yas Marina Circuit

Abu Dhabi’s F1 track is opened to the public three nights a week for TrainYas – Sundays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays (the latter is ladies’ night). The track is 5.5km long and you get free water here, and there’s bike shops, too. Most importantly, you can borrow bikes (plus a helmet) from the Cleveland Clinic stand. Registering in advance for a pass online is recommended – it’ll save you queuing to get in on future visits.

Yas Marina Circuit, Yas Island, Abu Dhabi, 6pm to 10pm, free. Taxi: Yas Marina. Tel: (02) 6599 800. yasmarinacircuit.com
Al Hudayriat Island

This cycle track features two loops, one 5km long, the other 10km. The route has coastline views of the ocean and the city’s skyline. Yas Cycles has a small shop here where you can rent a bike, plus there’s changing rooms, showers and vending machines selling bottles of water.

Al Hudayriat Island, Abu Dhabi, open 24 hours, free. Taxi: Al Hudayriat, over the bridge
Dubai Autodrome

Dubai’s motor racing track is open every Wednesday evening for cycling – TrainDubai runs until 9pm and you get to ride 2.5km of the facility, and you can also rent a bike here and buy water.

Dubai Autodrome, Motor City, Dubai, Wed 6pm to 9pm, free. Taxi: Autodrome. Tel: (04) 3678700. dubaiautodrome.com/traindubai
District One

The loop here is almost 9km long and the views of Dubai’s skyline, including the Burj Khalifa, are pretty impressive. You’ll often find cycle club rides taking place here as well. There’s showers and toilets and also a mobile bike service shop on hand on many nights.

District One, Nad Al Sheba, Dubai, daily, 24 hours, free. Taxi: cycle track, Nad Al Sheba. facebook.com/D1CyclingandRunning
Desert tracks
Al Qudra

Dubai’s sprawling network of cycle routes in the desert just gets bigger – it’s now almost 230km long. Trek have a store here, where you can rent a bike, and there’s toilets and showers plus a café, and you’ll also find plenty of food trucks – it’s also home to a branch of Last Exit. There are no street lights, so if riding at night, you’ll need good lights (and you’ll need to be mindful of the local wildlife, including gazelles).

Search for Trek Store Al Qudra on Google
Al Wathba

Abu Dhabi’s facility is a 45-minute drive from the city centre – you’ll find 96km of track here, with 8k, 16k, 20k, 22k and 30k loops, meaning it’s good for cyclists of all levels. There’s an ADNOC shop selling food and drinks and coffee, plus toilets and showers, and BeSport have a small store as well, where you can rent bikes.

Search for Al Wathba Cycle Track on Google
Al Ain

The garden city now has a 23km track. Facilities are non-existent, though. There’s a car park, but no toilets and no shops. But there is an ADNOC around 3km from the end of the track, should you need to make an emergency pitstop.

Search for Al Ain Cycle Track on Google
Casual cycling
Abu Dhabi’s cycle paths

All over the capital are designated cycle paths – you’ll find them on Saadiyat Island by the Louvre, on Yas Island, the Corniche, in Al Bateen, Khalifa City and on Al Maryah Island, to name a few places. And the best way to explore them is on a Cyacle. The big white bikes are Abu Dhabi’s bikeshare scheme – you can rent them for an hour at a time, as long as you return them to a docking bay within an hour (once docked you can book another hour and carry on).

MSN.com, Watson.ae