Route Planning Websites

These are some websites you can use for planning routes and/or reviewing .gpx route files you have received. Each tool has different strengths and weakness, and everyone seems to have their owns preferences so it does end up as being a bit of trial and error process to see which one suits you best.

Tool and Website Description Club Member with  expertise
For plotting a route 

Provides the ability to select a route according to the worldwide region, length and amount of climbing, or the site will generate a gpx route between a given start and end point. Registration is required and there is also a payed premium service which gives access to offline maps.  


Home page giving instructions on how to use the site.

Use to go directly to the gpx loading/saving page.
The site displays routes and tracks in tcx, gpx, tri, kml and fit formats. Routes may be saved as in tcx, txt, kml, gpx route, gpx track and gpxx route formats. When the “Show Elevation Data” option box is ticked elevation data will be saved with a gpx track file.
No registration is required.

NB. Press Shift-F5 when the Route Creation page is displayed in Bikehike to display maps and routes with Open Street Maps instead of the default Google Maps. 

A simple and intuitive website to plan tours in both the UK and France. It appears to use a database of cycle cross country routes and local cyclepaths as the ‘core’ (rather than variation of ‘roads for cycling within googlemaps’). It has proved very successful in finding very effective and safe routes through towns (such as Milton Keynes and Caen) as well as cross-country routing.

Has the ability to show images of the route using Streetview

Alan Jelley and Mike Thomas A solid route planning tool that is relatively easy to use 

Route generation. Allows gpx files to be loaded, displayed and downloaded with elevation data in a gpx track file. No registration is required.

A Norwegian site providing download facilities for processed Open Street Map files for all European Countries. Summer and winter options are available for all countries, but unless you are planning a cross country skiing tour the Summer option is the one for you. Map background files can be downloaded for direct installation on a gps (gmapsupp.img, which can be renamed to ‘country’.img to allow multiple countries to installed at the same time) and also an installation file for loading the map into Garmin’s Basecamp software.
The site asks for a voluntary donation, but this is not essential.
…and for viewing a .gpx file you have received    
gpx file viewer

Direct entry to profile plotting page. 
A very useful site that will draw an elevation profile from any input gpx file. It also gives an outline map of the whole route with colour coding to show the height of each part of your route.
No registration is required.