Michigan Bike Trails: Discover 23 Must-Ride Trails
Whether you’re out there blazing a paved trail alongside a lake; making your way over hills and dunes on a wooded path in a quiet forest or doing something in between; you know that Michigan is a perfect spot for biking.
With close to 1,500 miles of bike trails winding their way through Michigan’s upper and lower peninsulas, you’re never far from a great place to ride.
It’s no wonder that biking is one of the most popular outdoor activities in Michigan: the natural beauty found in just about every corner of the state combined with a love of outdoor recreation has led to the development of endless miles of bike trails.
We have mountain bike trails, family-friendly rails trails, a trail system that spans the entire state, trails along a park pathway, nature trails, and even a trail that provides ADA-access on a modified wheelchair bike (we’re looking at YOU, Betsie Valley Trail and Joy 2 Ride Benzie).
We’re sharing some of the best Michigan bike trails, so read on to discover the beauty of Michigan atop a bike.
Best Michigan Bike Trails
For cyclists of all skill levels, the possibilities in Michigan are endless.
The diverse terrain combined with the naturally beautiful forests and shoreline provide a rallying call to all: find a bike trail, get outdoors and enjoy the beauty that Michigan has to offer.
No bike? No problem: bicycle rentals are available in many Michigan locations, and it’s easy to find a bike rental location in many Michigan towns and cities.
Here are some of the best bike trails in Michigan.
Bike Trails in Northern Michigan
Betsie Valley Trail
This 22-mile long trail extends from Frankfort through Elberta and Beulah to Thompsonville. A portion of the trail is paved, and all of the trail is for both pedestrians and cyclists.
This beautiful trail is also ADA-Accessible, thanks to the unique, volunteer-run program Joy2Ride Benzie.
The Joy2Ride Benzie program allows individuals who are physically unable to pedal/ride a bike, the opportunity to enjoy our fantastic Betsie Valley Trail, by using a specially designed wheelchair bike and volunteer “pilots.”
Huron Sunrise Trail
Along a picturesque stretch of Lake Huron north from Rogers City in northeast Michigan, you’ll find one of Michigan’s most beautiful bike paths. This quiet, 10-mile path along Lake Huron provides stunning lake views with some of the most vivid blues you’ll ever see.
Rogers City (also known as The Nautical City), is a charming Lake Huron town with a beautiful lakefront park. It’s also about halfway between both Alpena and the Mackinac area, definitely worth exploring, so be sure and plan some time for exploration.
Little Traverse Wheelway
Truly one of our favorite rides in the Petoskey area is the Little Traverse Wheelway, an asphalt-paved path running along sunning Lake Michigan’s Little Traverse Bay.
The 26-mile path, which runs from Charlevoix to Harbor Springs, spanning both Charlevoix and Emmet counties is stunningly scenic.
Along the ride, there are parks to explore, picnic spots, and pit toilets. There’s also a history museum available for exploration and scenic overlooks as well.
The Little Traverse Wheelway is in a perfect location: set right between three of Michigan’s most picturesque vacation spots: Harbor Springs, Petoskey and Charlevoix.
Tawas Bay Pedestrian and Bike Path
The scenic path Tawas Bay Pedestrian and Bike Path follows both US 23 and the shore of Lake Huron’s Tawas Bay.
The scenic route, which offers stunning water views at several points along the way, connects Alabaster Township, Tawas City, East Tawas and Baldwin Township and includes spectacular scenery.
Learn more about the beautiful beaches of the Tawas Bay area in our Ultimate Guide to Tawas.
Easily one of the most delightful trails on out list, this 17-mile paved trail extends from the west side of Traverse City all the way to charming Suttons Bay.
Sleeping Bear Heritage Trail
Sleeping Bear Heritage Trail is one of the most picturesque of Michigan’s trails, running 21 miles through Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore.
The trail, which includes shared roadway in Glen Arbor, stretches from Empire to Glen Arbor. You’ll pass through the Port Oneida Rural Historic District, Glen Haven, DH Day and the Dune Climb.
Bike Trails in West Michigan
The Lakeshore Connector Path
Two beautiful spots – each boasting some of Michigan’s most popular shorelines – are connected by this beautiful bike path.
The Lakeshore Connector Path runs along the eastern shore of Lake Michigan, between Grand Haven and Holland, a distance of nearly 20 miles.
The paved path parallels Lakeshore Drive and offers access to the gorgeous beachfront parks along the way. Plan a little extra time to stop and explore both of these top Michigan travel destinations.
Learn more about the best beaches in the area and where to stay, play and eat in the Grand Haven and Holland area here.
Fred Meijer Grand River Valley Trail
This 13-mile nature trail ( a mix of pavement and crushed limestone) connects the towns of Lowell and Ionia, just outside of Grand Rapids in West Michigan. This pretty river valley trail, which runs east-west, takes you through Ionia State Recreation Area, where you’ll find access to the Grand River.
The River Valley Trail connects with other trails, too, including the:
Fred Meijer White Pine Trail
The trail, which starts north of Grand Rapids in Comstock Park and runs all the way north to Cadillac, is the granddaddy of the Fred Meijer rail trails network.
With more than 92 miles of mostly natural ballast and hard-packed gravel, you’ll also find some paved patches. You’ll find a mix of forests, farmlands, and…baseball? Yep, that’s right: the trailhead is located just near the West Michigan Whitecaps Stadium, a minor league baseball team and an affiliate of the Detroit Tigers.
Fred Meijer Flat River Rail Trail
The 22-mile Flat River trail runs north-south. It’s primarily crushed limestone through some heavily wooded forests, but you’ll find a two-mile paved stretch and takes you through the little town of Belding.
Fred Meier Berry Junction Trail
This 11.5 mile trail connects Muskegon and the resort town of Hart, located on the shores of Silver Lake, a popular vacation destination in heart of the Silver Lake sand dunes.
The Berry Junction Trail also serves as a connection between the Hart Montague Trail on the north end and the Muskegon Lakeshore Trail on the south end.
William Field Memorial Hart-Montague Trail State Park
With 22 miles of scenic trail in this linear park that takes you over hills and through forests, the William Field Memorial Hart Montague Trail State Park is not to be missed. It’s a really pretty mix of rolling farmland, orchards, and forests.
You’ll pass through the towns of Hart, Shelby, Mears, and New Era, but be sure to see the “World’s Largest Working Weathervane” in Montague.
Muskegon Lakeshore Trail
Just over 11-miles long, this is one of the prettiest lake trails in the state, running along both Lake Michigan and Muskegon Lake in some places.
Pere Marquette Rail Trail
Recognized as one of 25 “Rails to Trails Conservancy Hall of Fame” trails in the country, this scenic 30-mile trail runs between Midland and Clare in mid-Michigan. The Pere Marquette and is a mix of pavement and ballast.
Mid-Michigan Bike Trails
Saginaw Valley Rail Trail
Almost-11 miles of the abandoned railway is now home to a highlight of mid-Michigan, the Saginaw Valley Rail Trail. You’ll find bridges over rivers and creeks, natural wetlands, and the Shiawassee State Game Area.
Fred Meijer Heartland Trail
Almost 46 miles of trail through the heart of Michigan’s farm country, this trail is both rural and very scenic. You’ll encounter woodlands, meadows, wetlands, farms and small towns along this path which connect the towns of Greenville and Alma.
More Must-Ride Bike Trails
Harbor Beach Bike-Pedestrian Path
This two-mile asphalt path is short on distance but long on beauty, connecting the area’s campground, marina, parks, beach, and the community’s business district. The beautiful azure-colored waters of Lake Michigan along this stretch of Lake Huron are simply stunning.
Travel south of Harbor Beach along the lakeshore on Highway M-25 and you’ll find quaint villages like Port Sanilac and Lexington.
Clinton River Trail
This 16-mile multi-use trail runs through the heart of Oakland County in southeast Michigan. A mix of asphalt and crushed stone, you’ll pass through parks, residential areas, and downtown areas, too while the trail parallels the Clinton River.
The Clinton River Trail serves as a connector to other popular trails, including the Paint Creek Trail, the West Bloomfield Trail and the Macomb Orchard Trail.
ITC Corridor Trail
Part asphalt and part boardwalk, this 4-6 mile paved pathway is located in the Metro Detroit suburb of Novi. The ITC Trail starts in a community park, and follows a utility line corridor , passing scenic, wooded areas.
Van Buren Trail
The 14-mile, multi-use Van Buren Trail State park in southwest Michigan links the cities of South Haven and Hartford. You’ll travel through both blueberry fields and wooded areas and is more of a mountain bike trail.
Hines Park/River Rouge Gateway Trail
Almost 20 miles long, this southeast Michigan trail spans a greenway between the metro Detroit communities of Dearborn, Livonia, Westland, Plymouth and Northville. You’ll pass small lakes, rivers, streams and wooded areas along this paved path.
Iron Belle Trail
This massive trail connects Iron Mountain in the Upper Peninsula to Belle isle in Detroit, spanning more than 800 miles. You’ll pass forests, rivers, towns and cities on this scenic trail, which utilizes existing multi-use trails.
Polly Ann Trail
This 14-mile trail, a mix of asphalt, ballast and crushed stone, is located in southeast Michigan’s Oakland county. This liner trail connects the communities of Orion Township, Oxford Township, the Village of Oxford, Addison Township, and the Village of Leonard.
Find More Michigan Bike Trails Here:
Michigan Bike Trails F.A.Q.
A. The longest bike trail in Michigan is the Fred Meijer White Pine Trail in west Michigan. This trail runs 92 miles, starting in Comstock Park, just north of Grand Rapids, MI and travels all the way to the city of Cadillac.
becoming cone of the most bike-friendly state in the nation. On top of this, Michigan’s natural scenic beauty makes it a beautiful spot for cycling.
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