The United States boasts some of the most scenic sites in the world. While you can view them by plane, train, or automobile, nothing beats experiencing these destinations in person by walking or riding a bicycle. In fact, every college student who loves to bike should visit these best bike touring destinations in the US. Whether you go during summer or on break during the school year, each of these destinations will amaze you.
San Juan Islands, Washington
The San Juan Islands are a wonderful place to bike. Situated along the Pacific Ocean between Washington State and Vancouver Island, BC, are four islands. Named for a Spanish explorer, the islands host some of the most abundant flora and fauna of the region, including Douglas firs, bigleaf maples, bald eagles, western bluebirds, orcas, river otters, wolves, and black-tailed deer. The natural landscape ranks Washington state and the San Juan Islands as some of the best biking paths in the nation.
Ride along the Oregon coast’s pristine shorelines and marvel at the tide-pools filled with ocean-dwelling creatures, old-growth forests, cliffside trails, and sandy beaches. Stop by any of the local cafés for a fresh-brewed cup of coffee or enjoy a hearty meal of fresh seafood at any number of waterfront restaurants. The famous Oregon Coast Bike Route of Highway 101 is a must-see for any biking enthusiast, so plan your trip, grab your bike, and get going.
Santa Fe, New Mexico
For a spectacularly different terrain, consider the hot, arid New Mexico climate. When riding along the base of the Sangre de Cristo Mountains, be sure to stop by any of the local stores for water and other supplies. The New Mexico desert landscape poses one of the biggest threats to bikers in this region. You must be prepared, especially if this is your first bike tour. Nonetheless, the Turquoise Trail National Scenic Byway is one of the best sightseeing spots on the planet. Stop by during the Bike and Brew celebration for local craft beers, cycling workshops, and more.
Blue Ridge Parkway, North Carolina
The Blue Ridge Parkway is a national parkway linking the Shenandoah National Park and Great Smoky Mountains National Park. Tackling a 48-mile distance and elevation gains reaching over 5,000 feet, cyclists from around the world are amazed at the scenic landscape. Waterfalls, panoramic skylines, and rich green forests line the path. However, every cyclist must prepare themselves for any possibility because emergency services are limited in secluded sections.
The last of the best bike touring destinations in the US on this list is Burlington, Vermont. Known as an epicurean’s delight, Burlington offers some of the best food and drink hotspots in the country and features a 7.5-mile-long bike path following the Lake Champlain shoreline. From there you can view the jaw-dropping Adirondack Mountains. Continue onto the other 1,300-mile bike path network to see other parts of New England, Vermont, or Quebec.