Things To Do

Miami Bike Paths Guide

PHOTO: Walter Michot
PHOTO: Walter Michot

Growing up in Miami, riding a bike was my primary source of true neighborhood exploration. Countless hours spent outside discovering surroundings: which trees to climb, where the best parks were, finding hidden roads. It was a new adventure every day.

But at some point, we all paused on exploring those curiosities – and we all got a car.

Now it’s time to get back out there on those two-wheelers and start exploring. Miami-Dade County and the City of Miami have been working over the past few years to incorporate bike trails and bike friendly lanes to accomodate all users of our roadways.

Here is a guide to some our favorite bike trails in Miami.

NORTH MIAMI / AVENTURA

Oleta River State Park

3400 N.E. 163rd Street, North Miami

Cost: $2 entry by bike, $6 entry by car

Best time to go: Year round

Paved or Off-Road: 15 miles of off-road, mountain bike trails

Style of Bike: Mountain Bike

Solo riders or groups: Both

Notes: Bring water, bug spray, snacks and a camera to take pictures amongst the wetlands, tree hammocks, river and Biscayne Bay. Picnic tables along the way to stop and take a breath. There are also paved trails around the park, but the trails are the headliner.

Snake Trail

South of Snake Creek Canal from NE Miami Gardens Dr. in North Miami Beach to Florida’s Turnpike in Miami Gardens.

Cost: Free

Best time to go: Year Round

Paved or Off-Road: 3 miles of paved road

Style of Bike: All

Solo riders or groups: Both

Notes: Neighborhood trail in Miami Gardens. Easy ride. Greynolds Park and the Spanish Monestary Gardens  are nearby and worth checking out!

COCONUT GROVE / CORAL GABLES / KEY BISCAYNE

(For the adventurous cyclist, the Rickenbacker Trail, Commodore Trail, Old Cutler Trail and Biscayne Trail all link together for a ride totalling  approximately 27 miles)

Rickenbacker Trail

Rickenbacker Causeway, Key Biscayne

Cost: Free

Best time to go: Year Round

Paved or Off-Road: 8.5 miles of paved roads (bike lane and wide sidewalks)

Style of Bike: All (Although a bicycle with gears will help in climbing the Powell Bridge)

Solo riders or groups: Both

Notes: Bring water, sunscreen, camera and snacks. It’s a gorgeous ride overlooking Brickell and Key Biscayne. Virginia Key, Miami Seaquarium, Crandon Park and Bill Baggs State Park are additional stops along the trail.

Virginia Key

Virginia Key, Key Biscayne

Cost: $1 entry by bike, $5 entry by car on weekends

Best time to go: Year Round

Paved or Off-Road: 4 miles of rock/gravel trail

Style of Bike: Mountain Bike

Solo riders or groups: Both

Notes: Bring water, sunscreen, camera and snacks. This trail winds through tree hammocks, coves and beaches. Grab a drink at the interestingly famous water front establishment Jimbo’s.

Crandon Park

6747 Crandon Boulevard, Key Biscayne

Cost: Free entry on bike, $5 per car on weekdays, $6 per car on weekends

Best time to go: Year Round

Paved or Off-Road: Few miles of paved sidewalk

Style of Bike: All

Solo riders or groups: Both

Notes: Bring water, sunscreen, camera and if you’re interested in tanning the beautiful flat beaches are to your east. The nature center is located at the beginning of the North Beach entrance.

Bill Baggs State Park

1200 Crandon Blvd., Key Biscayne

Cost: $2 entry by bike, $8 by car, $4 single occupant vehicle or motorcycle

Best time to go: Year Round

Paved or Off-Road: 1.5 miles of flat, unpaved trail

Style of Bike: All

Good for solo riders or groups: Both

Notes: The trail will bring you through the trees and past the views of Biscayne Bay. Stop by the the Cape Florida Lighthouse, the oldest structure in South Florida, for a free tour Thursdays through Monday at 10 a.m. and 1 p.m. Grab a bite to eat at Lighthouse Cafe.

Commodore Trail

Coconut Grove, FL

Cost: Free

Best time to go: Year Round

Paved or Off-Road: 5 miles of paved trail

Style of Bike: All

Solo riders or groups: Both

Notes: Commodore trail takes you along historic South Miami Ave., Bayshore Dr., Main Highway and Douglas Road. Alice Wainwright Park, Museum of Science/Planetarium, Vizcaya Museum, Kennedy Park, Peacock Park, and the Barnacle Historic State Park  are along the way and worthy of checking out.

Old Cutler Trail

Cocoplum Circle, Coral Gables

Cost: Free

Best time to go: Year Round

Paved or Off-Road: 11 miles of paved trail

Style of Bike: All

Solo riders or groups: Both

Notes: Bring water, sunscreen and snacks as this trail takes you through a Coral Gables neighborhood. Calm and beautiful ride under the Banyan trees along Old Cutler Road. Take the time to visit these stops along the way:  Matheson Hammock Park  (you can also bike through here for beautiful Biscayne Bay views), Fairchild Tropical Garden, Pinecrest Gardens (Farmers Market on Sundays in the summer months), and The Deering Estate.

Biscayne Trail

From the end of the Old Cutler Trail, head east on 87th Ave. to begin the Biscayne Trail in Palmetto Bay

Cost: Free

Best time to go: Year Round

Paved or Off-Road: 2.7 miles of paved trail

Style of Bike: All

Good for solo riders or groups: Both

Notes: Bring water, sunscreen and snacks as this trail takes you through another South Miami-Dade neighborhood. The Biscayne Trail also cross over the Black Creek Trail.

Black Creek Trail

SW 137th Av e and SW 184th St., near Zoo Miami.

Cost: Free

Best time to go: Year Round

Paved or Off-Road: 8.7 miles of paved trail

Style of Bike: All

Solo riders or groups: Both

Notes: Bring water, sunscreen and snacks as this trail takes you through another South Miami-Dade neighborhood. The Black Creek Trail crosses by the Old Cutler Trail and Biscayne Trail and leads into Black Point Park and Marina. At the marina, you will have the chance to spot manatees, alligators and birds and grab some snacks at the restaurant.

Underline

From Brickell to Dadeland stations, under the Metrorail System

Cost: Free

Best time to go: Year Round

Paved or Off-Road: 10 mile linear park and urban trail

Style of Bike: All

Solo riders or groups: Both

Notes: Including places to exercise relax in a park setting, places to stop and grab a bite and admire public art. Connects to downtown, Miami River Greenway on the north and Ludlam Trail and South Dade Trail on the south.

Biscayne-Everglades Greenway Trail

Everglades National Park, Florida City

Cost: $8 by car, valid for one week

Best time to go: Year Round (though expect to be attacked by mosquitoes in the summer months)

Paved or Off-Road: 45 miles paved/gravel roads

Style of Bike: Mountain Bike

Solo riders or groups: Both (though I would say this is when you might need a buddy system!)

Notes: The only bike trail in the world that connects two National Parks! (Everglades National Park and Biscayne National Park). The trail will also travel through Florida City, City of Homestead, and surrounding farming areas. Bring water, sunscreen and snacks.

Southern Glades Trail

Southern Glades Wildlife and Environmental Area

Runs north and south along the C-111 Canal right-of-way, from Ingraham Highway/State Road 9336 to U.S. 1/South Dixie Highway

Cost: Free

Best time to go: Year Round

Paved or Off-Road: 13 miles unpaved roads

Style of Bike: Mountain

Solo riders or groups: Both (safety in numbers)

Notes: No bathrooms along  trail. Bring sunscreen, water, snacks, bug repellent, and a cell phone (in case of emergency)

Ludlam Trail

Set along a partially abandoned portion of the Florida East Coast Railway with restored native habitats along bicycle and pedestrian trails. A.D. Barnes Park, 3401 SW 72 Ave.

Cost: Free

Best time to go: Year Round

Paved or Off-Road: 6.2 mile linear park

Style of Bike: All

Solo riders or groups: Both  

Notes: Bring sunscreen, water, snacks. Trail travels through various areas of South Miami.

WEST KENDALL / EVERGLADES

Shark Valley

US Hwy 41, 25 miles off the Florida Turnpike

Cost: $8 by bike, valid for one week

Best time to go: Year Round (mosquitos in attack mode in the summer time)

Paved or Off-Road: 15 miles of paved roads

Style of Bike: All

Solo riders or groups: Both

Notes: At the halfway point there is an observation tower which overlooks the calm tranquility of the Everglades. Bring sunscreen, water, snacks (gummy bears will not suffice during this 2-3 hour trail) and remember not to feed the alligators!

HIALEAH / MIAMI LAKES

Amelia Earhart Park

401 E 65 Street, Hialeah

Cost: Free entry arriving by bike, $7 entry arriving by car

Best time to go: Year Round

Paved or Off-Road: 8 miles unpaved trails for beginners, intermediate and advanced riders

Style of Bike: Mountain

Solo riders or groups: Both

Notes: This park also has a lake, mini-farm, soccer fields and a dog park. Bring sunscreen, water, and enjoy snacks on the lake front.

COMMUNITY BIKE EVENTS

So maybe you can’t get out to those trails all of the time due to work, or traffic, or some other lame excuse that had your bike helmet catching some serious dust. Well these community events may just be the perfect opportunity to schedule some ride time in your Google calendar.

CRITICAL MASS MIAMI

Starts at Government Center, Downtown Miami (locations do vary, please check website for updates).

Critical Mass Miami is held on the last Friday evening of every month. This is a free community ride through different areas of Miami. The monthly ride map is posted on their website along with meet time and other suggestions. Bring water, camera, bike lights and cash. The ride usually ends at a local bar/pub where everyone stays for a few rounds.



MIAMI BIKE POLO


Locations and times change regularly, check their Facebook page for latest updates www.facebook.com/MiamiBikePolo  

Bicycle polo is a free, team sport played similarly to horse polo, but on a bike! Your own team is not necessary as plenty of riders come solo and join teams.

For additional biking information/news in Miami, check out the Miami Bike Scene http://www.themiamibikescene.com.

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