National Cycle Museum


Housed in the art nouveau Automobile Palace, the National Cycle Museum comprises more than 250 bikes. The exhibits show the progression from clunky boneshakers and towering penny-farthings to bamboo bikes from the 1890s and the vertiginous 'Eiffel Tower' of 1899 (used to display billboards), as well as slicker, modern-day versions.

Great effort has been made to put the bikes in context, with re-created Victorian and Edwardian cycle shops, photos and signboards – it's run with infectious enthusiasm. The building was constructed by Tom Norton, a local entrepreneur who started as a bicycle dealer and became the main Austin distributor.