Active City Spotlight: Boston

Your Guide to Running, Cycling, Hiking and Getting Active in New England


Places to Ride

The best cycling routes in and around Boston escape the busyness of the city and explore scenery as nature made it. One great ride that does this is an exploration of Cape Ann, less than an hour north of downtown.

A complete loop along the perimeter of the cape is about 20 miles in length, and the scenery is breathtaking.

Other routes include:

Cape Cod: Explore the easternmost peninsula of Massachusetts along the Cape Cod Rail Trail, a 22-mile path from South Dennis to South Wellfleet.

Dover: The Reservations Ride is a 20-mile loop through quiet scenery west of Boston. It also passes through six different reservations, including the Noanet Woodlands.

Events to Remember

The Charles River Wheelmen bike club puts on three century rides that have proven popular—The Spring Century in May, The Climb to the Clouds in July and the Fall Century in September. The Climb to the Clouds is a daunting journey to the summit of Mt. Wachusett in Princeton.

Other rides include:

  • Bike to the Sea Day in June is a 20-mile ride from Everett to the Massachusetts coast along the Northern Strand Trail.
  • Bike New England organizes the Road Scholar Cycling Tour on three separate summertime weeks. The trek lasts six days and covers beautiful locations like Plum Island, Salem, Cape Ann and more. The tour passes coastlines, lighthouses, wildlife sanctuaries and more.

Stores to Check Out

Quad Bikes in Cambridge (51 Shepard Street) is a non-profit bike shop on the campus of Harvard University. Relying on donations, the shop is great for repairs and buying used parts to keep your bike moving around campus. Because they are non-profit, the prices are extremely competitive.

Other shops to check out:

  • Belmont Wheelworks (480 Trapelo Road, Belmont)
  • Landry's Bicycles (890 Commonwealth Avenue)

One Last Tip

If you're a mountain biker, check out the extensive trails and fire roads at Middlesex Fells Reservation. The Bike Loop in particular is a 6-mile trail through the woods, but many other roads are mountain-bike friendly.

More: Packing Tips for Traveling With a Bike

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