September 8, 2016

Scenic bike rides in the United States: Where to bike in all 50 states

Here is a list of cycling ideas for the US, with recommended bike routes for each of the 50 states that will provide you with a scenic bike ride. There are just so many places to choose from that would make a memorable cycling vacation and cycling destination!

The United States is so vast that each state can offer different cycling experiences. Here are just a few ideas, with a suggested bike route from each of the 50 states that will provide you with a scenic bike ride! There are just so many places to choose from that would make a memorable cycling vacation and cycling destination! This is only a start. 🙂

This has been made into a 5-part series. This is part 1:

Tip: You will notice the images pictured below come from Flickr. If you click over to the original source, often times you will find many more photos within the same album from the trip for more scenic photos!

Biking in Alabama

For route ideas, the Huntsville cycling group, Spring City Cycling Club, has an ongoing list of their group rides mapped out on Ride with GPS. Bike Huntsville, an initiative by the city to be more bike-friendly, also has a list of suggested bike rides which includes greenways and signed bike routes. The Alabama Backroads Century Series offers opportunities to explore different parts of Alabama by bike in a fun way!

Biking in northern Alabama near Huntsville - Scenic bike routes in the United States

Photo: Flickr (cc) James Reynolds

Biking in Alaska

The opportunities of riding amidst beauty are endless in Alaska! Sockeye Cycling offers day rides and multi-day rides from Skagway or Haines. Or if you prefer not to be a part of a guided tour and want to venture out on your own, they also have the option of renting a variety of bikes – mountain bikes, hybrid bikes, tandem bikes, fat bikes, road bikes, and even bikes with trailers and panniers! So if you’re arriving to Alaska by cruise ship, biking is an option for you! (It’s recommended to first check with your cruise line to see what shore excursions are offered!)

Biking in Alaska - Scenic bike routes in the United States

Photo: Flickr (cc) John Beagle

Biking in Arizona

Monument Valley borders Arizona and Utah. Bike the area around Monument Valley on the paved open roads with geological wonders surrounding you. Or if you’re feeling even more adventurous, Monument Valley neighbors the Monument Valley Navajo Tribal Park which offers a 12 mile loop of dirt roads. The creator of the video below says they were the only ones out biking, and they made it a family affair!

Biking in Arizona near Monument Valley - Scenic bike routes in the United States

Photo: Flickr (cc) Rick McCharles

Biking in Arkansas

Map My Arkansas Ride and Arkansas Cycling and Fitness lists a variety of possible routes for road cycling with a starting point from different cities in Arkansas. The Arkansas River Trail System that you can catch in Little Rock consists of an 88-mile loop dedicated to outdoor recreation that connects a variety of local, state, and federal parks. Another thing to do in Arkansas is to make it a pedal and paddle vacation along the Buffalo National River with some mountain biking and kayaking included in your trip!

Biking and kayaking ideas in Arkansas, along the Buffalo National River - Scenic bike routes in the United States

Photo: Flickr (cc) Oakley Originals

Biking in California

There is no shortage of biking options in California, that’s for sure! The challenge is in choosing where to go and what type of landscape! Cycling national parks, cycling through bike-friendly cities, cycling wine tours, cycling along the beach, cycling on the beach, cycling along the coastline, cycling in the mountains! One option: biking in Joshua Tree National Park offers a diversity in terrain, landscape, and plant life all around. Don’t forget the sunscreen!

Biking in California on the roads of Joshua Tree National Park - Scenic bike routes in the United States

Photo: Flickr (cc) Joshua Tree National Park

Biking in Colorado

Where to bike for a scenic ride? How about the scenic byways! Biking Colorado’s scenic and historic byways are a good way to experience the beauty of Colorado. With 25 scenic byways to choose from, Bicycle Colorado charts out all of Colorado’s scenic byways on a map. By clicking a number on the map, it’ll give you a detailed description of the byway, along with the specific route map of that byway. Each byway offers up a different touch of Colorado, along with experiencing a piece of the state’s history. Take the Alpine Loop Scenic Byway for example (pictured below), passing through a rugged and remote mountain range with a touch of mining history to go with it!

Biking ideas in Colorado, Alpine Loop Scenic Byway - Scenic bike routes in the United States

Photo: Flickr (cc) David

Biking in Connecticut

For a scenic bike routes in Connecticut, Farmington located just outside of Hartford would be a good place to start. Farmington offers a variety of trails for nature-lovers with a national scenic trail, trails on the Farmington Valley Greenways, historic trails, and more. Paved bike trails in Connecticut recommended by the Connecticut Explorer, with details of each trail listed on the page, are the Farmington River Trail, the Trumbull Rail Trail and Monroe Housatonic Rail Trail on the Pequonock Greenway, the Airline State Park Trail, and the Farmington Canal Heritage Trail. In addition to the picturesque natural setting, you’ll get a dose of New England-feel history on the trails too!

Biking in Connecticut on the Farmington River Trail - Scenic bike routes in the United States

Photo: Flickr (cc) Kenneth Casper

Biking in Delaware

The Delaware Bicycle Route 1 is a 150-mile bike route that runs north-south across the state that touches Delaware’s towns, farms, state parks, and beaches. Give the 13 mile segment (one way) from Rohoboth Beach to Bethany Beach a try for some coastal riding. Being tourist areas, you may encounter some traffic, but it’ll be traffic with ocean views! Don’t be surprised if you encounter some headwinds too. Or if you want to make sure to avoid traffic, try heading inland away from the coast with a starting point from either of those areas, Rohoboth Beach or Bethany Beach, and you will be provided with the quiet backroads of the eastern shore!

Biking on Delaware Bicycle Route, Bethany Beach to Dewey - Scenic bike routes in the United States

Photo: Flickr (cc) John Beagle

Biking in Florida

Many cities in Florida have come up with bike sharing options, including Miami and Fort Lauderdale, to make it easier for you to explore the Florida coastlines by bike! If you prefer to try something different away from the oceanfront, one of Florida’s best known parks can offer you some unique biking experiences. Shark Valley within the Everglades National Park has a trail that is a 15 mile paved loop that will provide you with opportunities to see many different species of wildlife along the way. That means an alligator spotting is also a possibility! (Be careful!) Whether you choose coastal biking or Everglades biking, you don’t want to be caught in the hot Florida sun without water, so make sure to bring plenty with you on your bike ride!

Biking in Florida, Everglades National Park Shark Valley biking trail - Scenic bike routes in the United States

Photo: Flickr (cc) faungg

Biking in Georgia

Columbia County, located just outside of Augusta on the eastern side of Georgia, offers a variety of scenic opportunities for road cycling and mountain biking. There are several trails suitable for biking located within Columbia County, as well as bike rental options available. Experience history and nature together with the Augusta Canal National Heritage Area, bike through pine trees on the Bartram Trail, or get in some miles at Wildwood Park that is popular with locals for the variety of outdoor activities that is offered.

 

This concludes part 1!

See the rest of the states:

 

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