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?
Bike & Hike Trails
Amateur astronomers love this place in the heart of Florida’s cow country — 54,000 acres of wide-open prairie, 25 miles from the nearest town, ideal for stargazing under a pure night sky.
This paved bike trail system has it all — spectacular scenery, a smooth paved surface with few road crossings and great amenities and stops along the way. The 11-mile Legacy Trail, which follows an abandoned railroad bed from Sarasota’s suburbs to Venice, connects to another 10 miles of trails in Venetian Waterway Park.
Lake Wales Ridge State Forest is for explorers – folks who like to find places that aren’t in the guidebooks. Here you can hike for miles in the woods, hear only nature and have a chance to spot wildlife, including bear, bald eagles and endangered scrub jays.
We know what the big draw is in Orlando, and it’s not nature. But it should be! Even if your main destination is a theme park, here are eight natural experiences and places that would make memorable additions to a visit to Central Florida
A 22,000-acre wilderness with 60 miles of trails for hiking, biking and equestrians through five thriving wildlife habitats. Six primitive camping areas, or try this secret campground with river access.
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.
There’s a good reason Boca Grande is a favorite among the rich and famous: It’s beautiful, unspoiled and preserves the charm of Old Florida. The good news: It makes a satisfying daytrip, especially on a bike.
It’s spring in Florida: Azaleas are blazing in white, lavender, pink and red at this Florida state park with a rich history. About half the park’s flowers are in bloom, so this is the ideal time to visit because as more open, others lose their blossoms.
The East Central Regional Rail Trail deserves a catchier name because it’s a great bike trail – long, smooth, scenic and well-supported with signage and amenities. It travels through one of the most rural areas of Florida with miles of paved path without an intersection.
In a quaint Florida town known for its festivals, crafts fairs and antique shows, it hardly comes as a surprise there is a festival of bicycles, especially in Lake County, where the hilly terrain and nearby rail trails offer an exciting choice of venues for riding.