Google Maps expands bike navigation to more European countries

As summer inspires European cyclists to hit the road, Google Maps has added bike navigation to six more countries.

While the number of bike lanes in Europe continues to increase, Google announced Monday that it is expanding its bike trail routes and bike-friendly roads on Google Maps. Cycling directions and turn-by-turn navigations are now available in Germany, France, Poland, Ireland, Luxembourg, and Liechtenstein.

Last year the company bought bike navigation to nine European countries -- Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Finland, The Netherlands, Norway, Sweden, Switzerland, and the UK -- and Australia. Cycle directions for Google Maps was first released in 2010 in the US and Canada.

Aside from the new routes, the features also include biking directions and turn-by-turn voice-guided biking navigation. Cyclists can also customize their trips, make use of bike lanes and calculate rider-friendly routes that avoid busy roads and hills.

Tour de France fans can also access the classic stage from Biarritz to Bordeaux, which guides you through 206 mostly car-free kilometers along the Atlantic Ocean.

Google is also encouraging users to add bike trails, lanes and suggested routes to Google Maps using Map Maker to help create a more comprehensive map for everyone.