San Francisco Bay Area Biking Guide

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The San Francisco Bay Area is the land of the bike. The area is compact enough to make bicycles a practical mode of transportation. Combine that with a bike-friendly public transportation system, and you're all set for excursions without the hassle of parking. Put a bike rack on your car, and you've got the best of both worlds, especially for trips further out of town.

Working with GORP's friends at Penngrove Publications, publisher of Bay Area biking guides, I've selected a sampling of bike trips to get your wheels turning...

My favorite way out of town is the Golden Gate Bridge into the Marin Headlands (and beyond, if you want). Angel Island, in the middle of San Francisco Bay, is gorgeous, with stunning views of the city and Marin County and life on the bay—and no cars. The view is also fine from the top of Sweeney Ridge, south of the city, where you can see San Francisco Watershed, the Bay, and Mount Diablo, and to the west, of Pacifica and the ocean shoreline.

Napa County wine tours are justly famous, but if you want to get off the beaten track, head for Sonoma County and the Russian River Country, where the wines are a little more robust and the land just a little bit wilder.

In the East Bay, Coyote Hills offers an interesting ride though a wetland environment that gets an A+ for wildife. If you have the yen to really exert yourself, with payback in breathtaking views, head to Mount Diablo, the granddaddy of Bay Area slopes.

These trips are just a first sip out of a very tall glass. Cycling San Francisco and environs offers infinite pleasures—from tranquil country roads to wild hill country, rugged coastline, urbane city parks, and colorful neighborhoods. See you on the road!


Published: 29 Apr 2002 | Last Updated: 15 Sep 2010
Details mentioned in this article were accurate at the time of publication

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