Bike Tours by Region: New England and Cape Cod
Biking New England and Cape Cod can be the experience of a life time. New England and Cape Cod are a lovely mix of bustling cities, remote country roads, tantalizing dirt paths, and scenic ocean views. In this area, cyclists can discover mountain paths or bike along the beach. You can choose to take a bike tour with a tour guide company or bring your own bikes to explore the glory of New England by yourself. Cycling vacations in New England and Cape Cod are a great way to instill healthy choices in your children and get them to enjoy exercise. Calories expended during your ride give you extra leeway to splurge on great New England fare, like Maine lobster and succulent crab. Whether it is mountain biking or cycling on pavement that has you ready to hit the trail, New England and Cape Cod will exceed your expectations.
Where To Bike in New England
Because of the sheer size of the region, you can choose from a variety of places and routes. From paved roads to mountainous dirt paths, bikers will get their hearts pumping and legs burning.
Boston: This city is fast becoming one of the top bike-friendly cities in the United States. In the last three years, the city has installed 1,500 bike parking spaces. Many of the Boston sights, such as the historical attractions along the Freedom Trail, are accessible by bike. This urban bike oasis is a wonderful place to bring the kids on their first biking adventures. If you don’t feel comfortable navigating the city, tour guide operators, like Urban AdvenTours, guide bikers through the streets of Boston. This company’s tours include a scenic tour of the waterfront, the historic sites, and even a Boston night tour. You can also rent bikes from this tour company; so you do not have to bring your bike to discover Boston on your own.
Cape Cod: Bikers will find Cape Cod easy on the eyes and legs. The seaside paradise is gently rolling with the occasional large hill. Bike Tour Buzz’s recommendation is to start anywhere on the Cape and head towards Provincetown. If you prefer the security of a bike tour company, Bike & the Like, Inc offers an eight day biking adventure through Cape Cod. A van and lead rider supports your group throughout the trip. Going with a tour guide prevents you from getting lost and gives you the benefit of a team functioning behind your bike tour.
Maine: Maine was ranked the 2nd most bike friendly state in the country by the League of American Bicyclists in May 2011. The terrain varies from rocky shorelines to lush, tree-surrounded trails. The eastern half of the state has less challenging terrain, but expect hills throughout the state.
Nantucket: The small 14-mile by 3.5-mile island is suitable for inexperienced riders with very few hills on the entire island. The popular vacation retreat has plenty of bike paths, bike-friendly roads, attractions and scenic views to keep your group busy for an entire vacation. A ferry transports bikes and their riders to Nantucket island from Cape Cod. Riding from Town to the Cisco Brewery is a popular ride that is not too strenuous. For a greater challenge, ride out to Sconset and Sankaty Light.
Vermont: This picturesque state contains many biking trails and low-traffic roads for bikers to explore with a tour group or on their own. Inexperienced bikers may find the terrain--mostly rolling hills--slightly challenging.
New Hampshire: Some of New England’s toughest rides are in the White Mountains of New Hampshire, which is similarly scenic and offers some of the most charming local inns imaginable. Mt. Washington is the most significant climb in New England, an HC1. One of New England’s most challenging bike races, Newton’s Revenge, is held at Mt. Washington. New Hampshire also offers some quality downhill mountain biking when ski resorts convert their lifts for the summer. Our favorite is Attitash for lift serviced mountain biking.
From watch watching to the Salem witch trials, New England and Cape Cod has many non-cycling attractions that give non-biking members of your party something to do and even hard-core cyclers something to do in the off hours. Attractions include the New England Aquarium, Atlantic Beach Park, Salem historical attractions, the Appalachian Trail and Boston’s Freedom Trail.
Best Time to Visit
The cool autumn temperatures transform the green countryside into a yellow, orange and red splendor. This transformation of nature is less visible in cities. The cooler temperatures, during autumn and spring, also make cycling more pleasant.
The sheer variety of ways you can get into New England makes your trip to these states much easier and you can get to the part of the vacation you enjoy faster. You can travel by Amtrak, bus, car and airplane into the northern states. Large airports in the region include Boston Logan International Airport, Bangor International Airport, Burlington International Airport and Manchester-Boston Regional Airport. Getting around once you are in New England requires very little preparation unless you plan on visiting multiple cities during your trip. Most metropolitan areas have easy-to-access taxi or bus transportation. And, you can always rent a car.
Whether the members of your group feel comfortable casually pedaling through paved streets or uphill on rough terrain in New England or Cape Cod, this region has it all. It’s very family-friendly. More experienced bikers can choose a route along the Appalachians Mountains, where the routes are more uphill and difficult.
Have you biked New England? What bike routes, activities and tour groups would you recommend to other cyclists?