Explore the Best Places to Bike in LA
By Monica Sanchez
Need a change of scenery? If you’re looking for more challenging and interesting trails, then have an adventure in the heart of sunny Southern California by checking out some of these beautiful biking paths. Already live in LA? Then, venture back to these prime locations to enjoy a fun-filled day of cycling.
- Marvin Braude Bike Trail
The first images that pop into most people’s minds when they think of Los Angeles are palm trees and beaches. If you make your way down to the Marvin Braude Bike Trail, then you’ll get to explore what California dreams are made of while you enjoy a nice relaxing bike ride. Feel the sea breeze flow through your hair as you coast down the asphalt and concrete trail along the pacific coast.
This trail is not recommended for intense cycling practice. You may have to slow down or make room for kids, skaters, or other cyclists while you ride on the designated concrete path. The path is 21 miles long and meant for pure enjoyment and love of cycling rather than racing. What’s great about this path is that it takes you through multiple LA beaches, including Venice and Santa Monica, and there are plenty of rest stops along the way where you can use the necessary facilities or grab a bite to eat.
- Griffith Park Bike Loop
Because it is famously known for being home to the Griffith Observatory, not many people know that Griffith Park also has a fun bike path called the Griffith Park Bike Loop. This biking trail wraps around the park and other noteworthy locations near it. While biking along the Pacific coast is a relatively relaxing and easy ride, the trail in Griffith Park proves to be more challenging. Cyclists rate it as a medium to hard trail to spend your day on. Since Griffith Park sits atop the Santa Monica mountains, the elevation will take a bit of a toll on your breathing too if you are a beginner. This trail is recommended for more serious cyclists.
Aside from being the prime LA location to see the stars, Griffith Park provides some of the most incredible views of Los Angeles. This bike loop is sure to provide an interesting ride because you’ll inevitably want to stop and take in the sights. While riding, you’ll even pass by the Los Angeles Zoo and perhaps you’ll spot the Griffith Park Carousel. Perhaps if you’re not out of breath by the end of your ride, you’ll want to relax, venture through the observatory and learn a thing or two about astronomy.
- Ballona Creek Bike Path
The Ballona Creek Bike Path is one of those hidden gems that’s the city’s best unkept secret. While you may have to watch out for some joggers or other outdoor adventurers, this trail is sure to be a lot less crowded than any of the trails near the coastline. Less people means that you’ll most likely get to ride a little faster and get a good workout done for the day. The trail starts off in Culver City and follows the Ballona Creek all the way down to the Pacific Coast. If you choose to ride to the very end of the trail, then you’ll still get to experience the beach life at the end of your day. This trail is seven miles that passes mostly through residential neighborhoods. There are a few bumps here and there, but what’s unique about this bike path is that you’ll get to see some beautiful street art. This trail is recommended for cyclists of all skill levels.
- Mount Wilson Trail
If you’re looking for a serious workout, then travel toward Mount Wilson. This mountain route is begging to see some action. It’s a challenging climb with beautiful views of Southern California. Mountain bikers and serious cyclists are sure to venture here if they need to practice or train. The climb up this mountain is not easy. Some parts of the trail are rocky and have sharp turns too. Therefore, think before you decide to pedal here. If you feel confident enough to tackle this challenge head on, then make sure to bring a jacket along. It can get pretty windy at the top of the mountain.
- Los Angeles River Trail
While the Los Angeles river is definitely not recommended for swimming, it has a trail alongside it that provides a lengthy and adventurous bike ride for cyclists. Biking along the entire trail may not be possible in one day. After all, it’s almost 24 miles long. Although the trail is tedious, it has a lot of wide open space in which you can ride freely. While the trail is not reserved for cyclists, the wide space gives you room to focus on speed or exercise, so you don’t have to worry about running into joggers or skaters. This trail is recommended for all types of cyclists. It’s not too challenging if you don’t try to ride the whole way, and the space it provides gives beginners room to practice. Journey through the twists and turns of the famous LA river, and enjoy a day that lets you think about cycling and nothing else.
Come to Los Angeles, and have an adventure. Bask in the sun. See the coast. Most importantly, take advantage of the scenic routes and trails carved out for bike lovers of all ages and skill levels.
*Originally written for RHC Components