Bay Area Bike Rides

The Bay Area is a perfect place for cycling. We have rideable weather all year, a vast array of terrain and scenery, and great cycling roads all over the place. We also have a transit system that allows bikes; the combination of BART and bike can get you to all of the best places to ride, car-free.

These routes are designed for riders of different backgrounds, ranging from serious racing cyclists to people doing fun rides for the first time in their adult lives. Each of the rides listed here starts and ends at a BART station, focused on Oakland, Berkeley, and San Francisco, with rides going through the East Bay, Marin County, and the Peninsula. Most have options for beginning, intermediate, and advanced cyclists, and the routes start off together, so everyone can peel off for their own ride. Do them in the order presented here as a training ride series, or just pick the ones that look fun.

The 2023 storms seriously damaged many of the roads featured here, including Redwood, Wildcat Canyon, Mines Road, and Mount Hamilton Road. Many of the others are encroached on by mud, rocks, and fallen trees, and a lot of new potholes have appeared. Bikes can usually get through the road closures, but if a repair crew is active, check with them before going through. And be careful on the descents.

See the Alameda County Public Works Agency web site for updates on most of the East Bay roads.


A smiling bicyclist climbs a hill on a quiet road. Oak trees line the other side of the road, and a valley and another ridge are visible in the background.

Happy Valley

A relatively short ride featuring the Papa Bear climb and the long Pumphouse Hill descent.
A woman on a bicycle rides down a quiet road, apparently moving quickly. A white wooden farm fence is seen on the other side of the road. The hillside behind the woman is covered with oaks; one also overhangs the road near the woman. The day is sunny; long shadows suggest it is late in the afternoon.


The ride along Palomares Creek is lovely; there are a couple of wineries with tasting rooms.
A lone cyclist climbs a hill through a rugged landscape. The hillsides are mostly grassy and green, dotted with oak trees. One ridge in the mid-ground is chaparral-covered. It looks like a pleasant day; the sky is blue with wispy clouds.

Mount Diablo

A dramatic climb, almost 20km straight uphill, with a descent to match.
A group of cyclists stands at a seawall with the Golden Gate Bridge in the background on a misty morning. They are all smiling. One is pointing to the bridge.

The Tiburon Loop

One of the most popular loops in the Bay Area, this route adds a couple of fun options in the Marin Headlands.
A road meanders along the contours of a mountain covered in golden grassy fields. A bicyclist is seen from a far distance, having just passed underneath an overhanging oak tree. The bicyclist is climbing the hill, heading towards the point on the horizon where the road disappears over the hill,=.

Mount Tamalpais

Beautiful riding through Marin County and San Francisco, and a dramatic climb with views of the Bay and the Pacific.
The handlebars and front fork of a road bike are silhouetted against a gradient sky at dusk. The viewpoint is at the top of a hill facing the San Francisco Bay and the Golden Gate Bridge.

The Berkeley Hills Death Ride

This homage to masochism heads up and down 5 of the steepest streets in the Berkeley Hills (steepest grade, over 25%).
A narrow road with poor pavement winds uphill through a redwood forest. Light from above and shadows from the trees decorate the way. Redwood duff and leaf litter line the road.

Tunitas Creek Road

One of the best cycling roads anywhere, a climb through the redwoods with no traffic. Highway 1 is also fun for very different reasons.
A cyclist in lycra rides through a very remote agricultural landscape. The road goes straight over slight rises and dips to the image's vanishing point. Grazing land with brown grasses are on both sides of the road, with occasional tall trees. The landscape looks dry.

Mount Hamilton

No easy option on this one; only advanced or masochistic. Spectacular and challenging riding on desolated roads.

If you have a paid membership for the RideWithGPS app, you can use these routes for turn-by-turn directions, or, download the .TCX or .FIT files and import those into your favorite nav tool.


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