10 Must-Visit Routes for Cyclists of All Levels in the US and Canada
Cycling across North America, get ready to embark on an adventure! With a myriad of scenic and diverse bike trails, from coastal routes to mountainous terrains, these paths cater to cyclists of all levels. Brace yourself for unforgettable experiences and breathtaking views as we guide you through must-visit bike trails in the United States and Canada. This guide offers a range of options, ensuring that every cyclist finds the perfect trail for their next solo or group adventure.
The Great Allegheny Passage | Image source: GapTrail.org
The Great Allegheny Passage (GAP), USA
Spanning approximately 150 miles (241 km) from Pittsburgh to Cumberland, the Great Allegheny Passage is a jewel of a trail. Cyclists traverse through dense forests, charming small towns, and picturesque landscapes. The crushed limestone surface makes it accessible to riders of all levels, providing a delightful journey through the heart of the Eastern United States.
Craggy Pinnacle Tunnel at Milepost 364 | Image source: BlueRidgeParkwayDaily.com
Blue Ridge Parkway, USA
For a ride through the stunning Appalachian Highlands, the Blue Ridge Parkway is a cyclist’s dream. This scenic byway stretches for 469 miles (754 km), offering panoramic views, challenging ascents, and a mix of wooded landscapes. With varying elevations, cyclists can choose sections that suit their skill levels.
San Juan Islands, USA | Image source: VisitSanJuans.com
San Juan Islands, USA
Explore the scenic beauty of the Pacific Northwest by cycling through the San Juan Islands in Washington. With ferry rides between islands and serene coastal views, this route provides a unique island-hopping experience. The terrain is generally gentle, making it suitable for cyclists of varying abilities.
Cabot Trail, Canada | Image source: FreeWheeling.ca
Cabot Trail, Canada
Venture into the heart of Nova Scotia on the Cabot Trail, a 185-mile (298 km) loop offering breathtaking views of the Gulf of St. Lawrence and the Atlantic Ocean. Cyclists can expect challenging climbs, winding descents, and coastal vistas that make this trail a favourite for those seeking a blend of natural beauty and physical challenge.
The Great Divide Mountain Bike Route, USA and Canada | Image source: RideWithGPS.com
The Great Divide Mountain Bike Route, USA and Canada
For the adventurous mountain bikers, The Great Divide Mountain Bike Route traverses over 2,700 miles (4,345 km) from Banff, Canada, to the US-Mexico border. This epic journey crosses through the Rocky Mountains, offering challenging terrain and unparalleled wilderness experiences. Sections of this route cater to a range of skill levels.
Montour Trail, USA | Image source: VisitWashingtonCountyPA.com
Montour Trail, USA
Situated near Pittsburgh, the Montour Trail is a 63-mile (100 km) rail-trail that combines history with natural beauty. Passing through former coal-mining regions, cyclists can enjoy a relatively flat path, making it suitable for riders of all levels. The trail also connects to the Great Allegheny Passage.
Kettle Valley Rail Trail, Canada | Image source: BCRailTrails.com
Kettle Valley Rail Trail, Canada
Embark on a scenic journey through British Columbia’s Okanagan Valley on the Kettle Valley Rail Trail. With panoramic views of vineyards, lakes, and mountains, this trail offers a mix of paved and gravel surfaces. Cyclists can choose sections based on their preferences and skill levels.
The Swamp Rabbit Trail, USA | Image source: GreenvilleSpinners.org
The Swamp Rabbit Trail, USA
For a taste of the South, the Swamp Rabbit Trail in South Carolina takes cyclists on a 22-mile (35 km) journey through charming small towns and lush greenery. The flat terrain and well-maintained paths make it suitable for cyclists of all levels, providing a pleasant and relaxed ride.
Prince Edward Island (PEI) Confederation Trail, Canada | Image source: TourismPEI.com
Prince Edward Island (PEI) Confederation Trail, Canada
Explore the gentle landscapes of Prince Edward Island on the Confederation Trail. Stretching over 230 miles (370 km), this rail-trail offers a mix of pastoral views, coastal scenery, and charming communities. The flat terrain makes it an ideal choice for cyclists of all abilities.
Cape Cod Rail Trail, USA | Image source: TheInnAtYarmouthPort.com
Cape Cod Rail Trail, USA
Experience the charm of Cape Cod on this scenic rail-trail. Stretching for 25 miles (40 km), the Cape Cod Rail Trail takes cyclists through picturesque towns, salt marshes, and cranberry bogs. The flat terrain and well-marked paths make it suitable for cyclists of varying skill levels.
Whether you’re drawn to the coastal beauty of the San Juan Islands or the challenging mountainous terrains of the Great Divide, North America has a bike trail for every cyclist. These must-visit routes in the US and Canada promise not only physical adventure but also a visual feast of diverse landscapes. So, gear up, pick your trail, and embark on a cycling journey that will leave you with lasting memories. Happy riding!