As part of Bike Month in Manchester, the North West Velo Fest returns this year will all kinds of two-wheeled events to promote cycling in the city. Across eight days, try your hand at bike polo, unicycling or simple get on your bike saddle and take part in a leisurely (or perhaps more bizarre) ride around various routes (full listings here). Here are our picks from across the festival, which take place from today (Fri 7 June) through to Saturday 15 June…

Urban Exploration Trail
Leave the bus tours behind and instead pedal your way through Manchester’s history, with this exploration trail uncovering some of the city’s best-kept secrets. The trail is at your own pace and clues will be available to pick up from Manchester Museum to guide your individual, self-led tour of Manchester’s hidden gems. Wind down afterwards at the Briton’s Protection (Bridgewater Street) for a post-ride pint to marvel in your discoveries.
Mon 10 Jun, Manchester Museum, Oxford Road, M13 9PL, 6pm, FREE

World Naked Bike Ride
This good-natured ride returns to Manchester for its eighth year as cyclists throw caution – and clothes – to the wind in celebration of the human body, and to highlight the vulnerability of cyclists on the roads. The basis is to strip down and bike in the buff – but with a dress code of ‘As Bare As You Dare’, how much (or how little) you wear is up to you. With many participants choosing to decorate their torsos with body paint and political messages, creative expression is strongly encouraged for this scantily clad ride. Just don’t forget your suncream.
Fri 14 Jun, All Saints Park, Cavendish Street, M15 6BG, 6pm, FREE

Mad Hatter’s Alleycat
For the grand finale of the festival, more adventurous riders can marvel in a mad-dash treasure hunt race around the city and, as the name suggests, it will be anything but dull. With prizes for best fancy dress (optional), fastest and slowest teams, you don’t have to be a cycling pro or have the clue-solving skills to rival Sherlock in order to take part.
Sat 15 Jun, Bicycle Boutique, 1 Hillcourt Street, M1 7HU, 2pm, FREE

North West Velo Fest, Fri 7 – Sat 15 Jun, various locations, various times,

Image: North West Velo Fest 2012’s Gabardine Ride, via Mad Cycle Lanes of Manchester

Fri 7 Jun - Sat 15 Jun
Hannah Phillips
Published on:
Fri 7 Jun 2013