Cycling Florida, US: Exploring the Sunshine State on Two Wheels

Florida has a lot to offer cyclists, whether you live here or are just visiting. There are many different bike trails to choose from, so you can find one that fits your needs. If you want to ride along the coast, there are scenic trails that offer beautiful views. If you prefer to ride in the country, there are trails that take you through parks and other natural areas. No matter what kind of cycling you enjoy, you’ll find it in Florida.

When to Cycle in Florida

Florida’s flat terrain and warm climate make it an ideal location for cycling year-round. Florida features a tropical or subtropical climate with hot, humid summers and gentle winters. Sunshine prevails year-round. The most favorable seasons for cycling are spring and autumn, with mild temperatures (18-25°C) and minimal rainfall.

Top 7 Cycling Routes in Florida:

Shark Valley Loop Road – Everglades National Park

Distance: 24 km

This 24-km paved loop is situated within Everglades National Park, providing cyclists with the opportunity to explore one of the most distinctive ecosystems in the United States. The path is well-maintained, ensuring a smooth ride throughout.

While cycling through the park, it’s common to spot various birds, alligators sunning themselves near the water’s edges, and other wildlife native to the Everglades. The loop also features an observation tower at the halfway point, offering a higher vantage point for breathtaking views.

The Shark Valley Loop is particularly enjoyable during the cooler months of the year, from November through March, when temperatures are milder and the mosquito activity is reduced. Don’t forget to bring water, sun protection, and some snacks. 

Jacksonville-Baldwin Rail Trail 

Distance: 47 km 

This rail-trail conversion provides a smooth, paved surface ideal for cyclists of all ages and skill levels, including casual riders and families.

The trail runs through rural areas and scenic woodlands and offers a peaceful escape from the hustle and bustle of city life. The pathway is generally flat and is well-shaded by a canopy of trees, which is especially appreciated during Florida’s hot summer.

Follow Thomas Jacksonville Baldwin Rail Trail | Most Rural Bike Trail In Jacksonville

Markham Park to Conservation Levee Greenway loop

Distance: 50 km 

You can start the ride at Markham Park in Sunrise, Florida. The park has an extensive network of paved paths in good condition and suitable for cyclists of all levels.

To get to the Conservation Levee Greenway, exit Markham Park and head north. The route follows paths along a levee or embankment parallel to the Everglades. These paths offer beautiful views of the natural landscape, making for a peaceful and scenic ride. The Greenway is quiet and traffic-free, perfect for those who want to escape the city and enjoy nature.

There are rest stops, water fountains, and picnic areas along the way, but it’s a good idea to bring water and supplies, especially on hot days. This route is great for nature lovers and anyone who wants a peaceful bike ride away from the city.

Ride Dirty Mtb Markham Park / Everglades Levee

Gemini Springs loop via Rail Trail – Volusia County

Distance: 47 km

The trail meanders through lush, verdant landscapes typical of central Florida. The terrain is mostly shaded so you can enjoy your ride even on sunny days. One of the main attractions of the Gemini Springs Loop is its scenic views of the park’s twin springs, which collectively produce millions of gallons of fresh water daily. The trail is also very well-maintained, with plenty of amenities along the way. There are picnic areas, restrooms, and water fountains, so you can take a break and enjoy the scenery whenever needed.

General James A. Van Fleet State Trail 

Distance: 47 km

The Van Fleet State Trail is a great place for a long bike ride in nature. It is flat and straight, perfect for cyclists of all levels. It’s also very scenic, with diverse ecosystems, including wetlands, forests, and agricultural pastures. You’ll likely see wildlife along the way, such as birds, deer, and alligators.

The trail is relatively secluded, so bringing water and snacks is a good idea. There are also very few access points, so you’ll need to plan your ride accordingly. However, the lack of amenities and crowds makes the Van Fleet State Trail a great place to escape and enjoy a peaceful bike ride.

Alex Regino – The Ride Xperience General James A. Van Fleet State Trail – Bike Trails near Orlando, Florida

Tallahassee to Saint Marks (St Marks Historic Railroad State Trail)

Distance: 36 km

It’s a paved trail that follows an old railroad route, so it’s mostly flat and easy to ride. The trail starts in Tallahassee and ends in St. Marks, a historic fishing village. Along the way, you’ll ride through various ecosystems, including pine flatwoods, hardwood forests, and freshwater marshes. You’ll likely see wildlife, such as birds, deer, and alligators.

The trail is well-maintained and wide enough for cyclists and pedestrians. It’s also relatively flat, making it a good choice for cyclists of all levels. One of the highlights of the trail is St. Marks’s historic charm. Here, you can explore local restaurants, visit the St. Marks Lighthouse, or continue your adventure along the coastal routes.

West Orange Trail 

Distance: 36 km

The trail starts at Killarney Station, just 15 minutes northwest of downtown Orlando. From there, it winds through the serene Oakland area before reaching the vibrant downtown Winter Garden. Here, you can enjoy local shops and restaurants.

The trail occasionally cuts through lightly wooded areas and past remnants of orange groves. This portion also accommodates horseback riding. Further along, the trail reaches Apopka, a rapidly growing area in central Florida. It navigates through exclusive trail sections, including Orange Blossom Trail. The route follows North Park Avenue and Rock Springs Road for 3.5 miles, then heads west on Lester Road, running alongside the road until it concludes at Vick Road. The trail connects to the South Lake and Lake Minneola Scenic Trail at its western terminus.

Alex Regino – The Ride Xperience Bike Trails near Orlando – The West Orange Trail

Recommended Hotels in Florida

SpringHill Suites:  Website | Instagram

Snooze Hotel: Website | Facebook

Melbourne All Suites Inn: Website | Instagram

Fairway Inn Florida Homestead Everglades: Website 

The Cozy Inn: Website | Facebook

Recommended Bike Shops & Rentals in Florida

West Orange Trail Bikes and Blades: 17914 State Road 438 Winter Garden, FL 34787 Website | Facebook

Bob’s Beach Bicycle Works Indialantic: 113 5th Avenue Indialantic, FL 32903 Website 

E-Cycle Adventures: 3049 Aerial Way; Brooksville, FL 34604 Website | Instagram

Trek Bicycle Seminole: 11198 70th Ave Seminole, Florida, 33772  United States Website | Instagram

Gear Bicycle Sales: 91 Geneva Dr. Oviedo, FL 32765 Website | Instagram

Recommended Cafes in Florida

Bike Life: Website

Taste of Florida: Website | Instagram

Macondo Coffee Roasters: Website | Instagram

Sunset Walk: Website | Instagram

Sunrise City: Website | Instagram

Cafe Lucia: Website | Instagram

Sebastian’s Roadside Restaurant: Website 

Florida Food Life: Website | Instagram

Cycling Events in the Area:

50TH CYCLE MOUNT DORA Fri 11th October 2024 – Sun 13th October 2024 link 


IRON JOE TURKEY RIDE & WALK Sun 24th November 2024 link

With MapMagic route planner, you can craft your one-of-a-kind adventure with friends, add segments and multiple routes on one map, and use 70+ maps and layers to fully prepare for navigating unknown terrain. Join here

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