Bike & Hike

Bike path along A1A in Boca Raton.

Florida bike trails: Our favorites in South Florida and statewide

South Florida bike trails offer great scenery and local flavor. From the Keys to Lake Okeechobee, here are nine great bike trails that we’ve tried and recommend. How many have you ridden?

Florida's dramatic sky at Tigertail Beach in Marco Island. (Photo: Bonnie Gross)

Off-the-beaten path in Marco Island: Go beyond your hotel pool

The beach town of Marco Island is all manicured and modern, but here are four adventures into the wild and authentic Florida that are within a quick drive. You can wade across a lagoon to a wild beach or have lunch in a funky fishing town or stroll on a boardwalk into a beautiful old growth cypress swamp.

Kayaking past the fishing pier in the lagoon area of  Oleta River State Park. (Photo: Bonnie Gross)

Oleta River State Park feels like island getaway in Miami urban sprawl

This Miami state park, 10 minutes from sprawling Aventura Mall, is a remarkable island of green where you can kayak, mountain bike, picnic and enjoy a sandy beach. There are even rustic cabins to rent.

Where the Florida Trail crosses Alligator Alley, you can start a hike into the Everglades. (Photo: Bonnie Gross)

Hike into the Everglades right from Alligator Alley

When crossing Florida on I-75, this hike is an easy way to experience the Everglades. You can hike for miles; even backpack to a campsite. Or stretch your legs for a short taste of the wild.

Photo by stephg67 via Flickr

Azaleas bloom at Ravine Gardens; celebrated in festival March 3-4, 2018

It’s spring in Florida: Azaleas are blazing in white, lavender, pink and red at a Florida state park with a rich history.

At Shark Valley in early January, this pair were so close, you had to walk to the other side of the paved path to avoid crowding them. (Never crowd a Mama Gator!) There were six oher young gators in the grass around Big Mama.

Shark Valley at Everglades National Park: Great bike trail; terrific wildlife

This entrance to Everglades National Park has one trail, but it’s so special that Shark Valley is hard to top. It’s an especially great place to bicycle. Flooding closed this section of the park from September until mid-December, and water levels are still high.

Trail along Tiger Creek Preserve

Exploring the Lake Wales Ridge: Central ‘highlands’ with old-fashioned flavor

Central Florida’s Lake Wales Ridge is made for exploration. It offers rolling hills, forests, streams, quaint small towns with lots of places for hiking, kayaking and camping.

You could spend an hour just browsing all the stuff at the Grumbles Antique and Garden Shop in Dunnellon. (Photo: David Blasco)

More than the Rainbow River; Dunnellon is a good base for exploring

Dunnellon is known for its spectacular Rainbow Springs and River, especially during tubing season. But there are more reasons to visit in cool weather, including another exquisite river– the Withlacoochee — several good restaurants, and trails for both hiking and biking.

Withlacoochee State Trail: Smooth and scenic

Withlacoochee Trail: This might be Florida’s best bike trail

This 46-mile paved Central Florida rail trail is a smooth, safe ride. But what makes it special is the scenery, parks & towns to explore along the way.

There is some shade on the Pinellas Trail, but not very much because of the trail's width.

Pinellas Trail: Treasured St. Pete bike trail is now 5 miles longer

The Pinellas Trail is a long, well-marked paved bicycle trail that connects St. Petersburg to Tarpon Springs along Florida’s Gulf coast. It was just extended five miles north, and this is the most scenic section of all.

Mount Dora Bicycle Festival

Florida bike festivals: Bicyclists take to country roads every fall

Organized bike festivals create safer longer rides for bicyclists while giving them beautiful places to explore and enjoy the scenery.