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These Are the Most Cyclist-Friendly Cities Around the World

♫ I like to ride my bicycle, I like to ride my bike ♫

There are a lot of cities that are well-designed for vehicles, with smart motorways offering easy access to and from the center, but there are also a lot of cities who have taken into account the importance of cycling (rather than driving) and made fantastic bike-friendly facilities.

If you've ever been to Copenhagen, Denmark, you probably would have been impressed by not only the sheer volume of cyclists but also the bicycle infrastructure and facilities available. Over the last decade, the city has invested millions into developing these structures, and that investment has paid off because it ranked number one in the 2017 Bicycle Friendly Cities Index, conducted by The Copenhagenize Index.

In number two is Utrecht, Netherlands. Although this city is smaller than Amsterdam (which came in first place in the index in both 2011 and 2013), according to the index Utrecht has been investing a lot in bicycle urbanism, including creating more biking parking spots and designing a bicycle bridge. And, while the Dutch are already extremely advanced in their biking facilities, Utrecht happens to have the longest bicycle street — which is currently 6kms, but there are plans to extend this.

Fourth on the list is the French city of Strasbourg, and in the future, this city will be even more bicycle friendly with the plans for bicycle superhighways. In fifth place is Malmö in Sweden, which has opened the Cykelhuset — The Bicycle House — designed to allow the residents to live without cars and instead "accommodate bicycles and cargo bikes throughout the entire building."

Sixth place goes to another French city, this time Bordeaux, which has approved a new cycling plan with the goal of 15 percent modal share for bicycles. Then in seventh place is Antwerp, which remains the best large city in Belgium for cycling. Then comes Ljubljana in Slovenia — a city that has also been celebrated for being the Green Capital of Europe in 2016 — which does a great job at the positive promotion of cycling.

According to Travel and Leisure, the League of American Bicyclists' also rates Copenhagen as the number one city for biking, while Portland, Oregon, is rated second and celebrated for, among other things, developing 270 miles of on-street bike lanes and paved paths.

Third on this list is Munich, Germany, which reportedly has detailed bike-route diagrams and cycling maps, as well as dedicated bike lanes. Biking is also reportedly the quickest and most flexible way to travel in the city. Fourth place goes to Montreal, Canada, and among the standout features that the city offers is apparently "a paved recreation path connecting Old Montreal with the town of Lachine."

The fifth spot goes to Western Australia's Perth, which already has extensive cycling networks in place, with plans to improve the routes from the suburbs into the city. And Amsterdam comes in sixth.

So, what are the top cities in the world to bike? It seems that this largely depends on who you ask, but there is definitely a trend when it comes to the countries that are doing it best, and the clear winners are Denmark, Netherlands, and France.

[Image via Shutterstock]

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