Heading to the Cape before the end of the summer? Get out of your car and onto your bike for the best day ever.
Cape Cod Canal Bikeway
From Bourne to Sagamore, this scenic paved trail is the perfect way to take in a summer’s day. The route, a relatively easy seven miles on each side of the canal and 13.9 miles total, is maintained by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers which uses it for a service road. Authorized vehicles, walkers, and non-motorized vehicles only are allowed to use the bikeway. The trail has several access locations and recreation areas to stop and observe the wildlife or just take in the view.
Cape Cod National Seashore
Feel the salty air on your face as you peddle this short three-mile paved trail in Eastham. This bike path is a great way to get a bit of exercise while taking in the coast at the same time. Beginning at Salt Pond Visitor Center and finishing at the Coast Guard Beach, the trail offers opportunities to stop on the sandy shores before heading back.
Cape Cod Rail Trail
If you are looking for something a bit longer, check out the Cape Cod Rail Trail, which is 27.5 miles in length, stretching from Yarmouth to Wellfleet. Experience sandy beaches, marshes, and cranberry bogs as you pedal on this popular route. If the full length is too daunting, there are access points in every town along the way so that you can choose which stretch of the pathway you want to experience. The Rail Trail boasts plenty of photo-worthy spots, plus opportunities to grab refreshments at local shops and cafes close to the route. Plus, if you don’t have wheels of your own, there are bike rental centers close to the trail in Yarmouth, Dennis, Harwich, Brewster, Orleans, and Eastham.
Cape Cod Nickerson State Park Trail
For the wildlife lover, this eight-mile bike path offers excellent views of the coastal woodlands of Cape Cod. Be on the lookout for foxes, deer, and coyotes which are common sightings as you cycle through the park. You can easily turn the visit into a mini vacation, as Nickerson State Park is home to over 400 campsites and numerous ponds for swimming, paddle boarding, and fishing. Plus, the trails are almost entirely covered by pine trees and forests, a great way to take a break from the summer heat.
Cape Cod Provincelands
Starting in the Province Lands Visitor Center in Provincetown, the 5.25-mile-long paved trail, part of the National Seashore, is a great way to explore the dunes and beaches at the far end of the Cape. The bike path offers multiple access points, and you can extend your trip with excursions to Race Point Beach (0.5 miles), Bennett Pond (0.25 miles), and Herring Cove Beach (1.1 miles).
Cape Cod Shining Sea Bikeway
Travel through beaches, harbors, and marshes as you cycle the 10.7-mile paved bike path through Falmouth. Named for Katharine Lee Bates, the author of America the Beautiful, who was born in Falmouth in 1859, the trail has many different entry points, each giving you a perfect opportunity to see the magic of this part of the Cape. Start at North Falmouth to see cranberry bogs, or head to West Falmouth to see the stunning marshes. If a charming waterfront is what you are after, peddle the 4-mile path into the village of Woods Hole, passing lighthouses and beaches along the way.
Featured Image by FreePik