10 Best Road Bike Trails in Georgia

Posted On April 20, 2022 / Lifestyle

By: Drew Hincapie

Cyclist out for a ride

Georgia is one of the South’s best states for bike trails. It’s an up-and-coming bike state continuing to expand and improve its vast network of paved road bike trails. Georgia bike trails take you out of the city hubbub and into the tranquil, natural landscape right outside of its busy city streets. We’ve gathered a list of 10 of the best bike trails Georgia offers to all cyclists, from beginners to pros. Add our recommendations to your bike trail bucket list and make your way to Georgia for 218 total miles of the best bike rides the state has to offer. 

What makes Georgia a great place for cyclists?

Georgia ranked number 19 for friendliest cycling state in the 2019 Bicycle Friend State Report. And even since then, the trail mileage has expanded. It offers rides in urban, rural, and coastal landscapes full of wildlife. On the trails, you’re never far from food and shops with great Southern hospitality. Many of the trails are connected to one another at different points, creating a network of bike trails expanding across the Peach State. This network allows cyclists to easily customize where, when, and how far to ride. 

10 of the best road bike trails

1. Silver Comet Trail

Location: Rhyne Park, Georgia 

Distance: 61.6 miles 

Difficulty: Moderate

Silver Comet trail

The Silver Comet Trail was once a railroad for a luxury passenger train nicknamed the Silver Comet that ran from Atlanta to Birmingham. The bike trail traverses 60 miles from Smyrna to the Georgia-Alabama state line. It is mostly flat and paved, other than 18 miles of natural terrain and a few steep hills. This is one of Georgia’s most popular trails and can be full of traffic at times, but the scenery is peaceful. You’ll cycle through Brushy Mountain Tunnel and over Pumpkinville Trestle, one of three trestles you’ll encounter. The Silver Comet Trail is connected to Alabama’s Chief Ladiga Trail, which would add another 94 miles of distance. 

2. Rockdale River PATH Trail

Location: Conyers, Georgia 

Distance: 18.3 miles 

Difficulty: Moderate 

The Rockdale River PATH Trail is not an easy ride, but a goodie. It’s the best hill workout on our list and is renowned for its steep hills. Parts of the trail are unpaved and a mountain bike may be best. But most of the Rockdale trail is paved in addition to several wooden and iron bridges. The trail is heavily forested and full of furry critters. The trail begins at the Monastery of the Holy Spirit and is connected to Arabia Mountain Trail. 

3. Atlanta Beltline Trail

Location: Atlanta, Georgia 

Distance: 22 miles 

Difficulty: Easy 

Atlanta Beltline

This is another trail that rose from the ashes of an abandoned railway line. The Atlanta Beltline is a network of trails (West End, Southside, Eastside, and Northside) that makes a paved 22-mile loop around the city of Atlanta. This trail is awesome for beginners and the perfect way to explore Atlanta, in our opinion. The trail connects to favorite Atlanta attractions and includes plenty of places for pit stops. Completion of the Beltline is scheduled for 2030, so there’s more fun to come. 

  • The Atlanta Beltline West End Trail is located in Washington Park and passes many restaurants and breweries. This portion of the Beltline is popular for its murals and installations. 
  • The Atlanta Beltline Southside Trail opened segment 1 in September 2021 and is still under construction. The full trail is open but is currently rough gravel rather than pavement. 
  • The Atlanta Beltline Eastside Trail is located in Piedmont Park and continues to Reynoldstown. This portion includes several playgrounds and is perfect for families with young kids. 
  • The Atlanta Beltline Northside Trail rides through Tanyard Creek Park. It takes you past a golf course and includes a railroad trestle. 

4. Jekyll Island Bike Trail 

Location: Jekyll Island 

Distance: 20 miles 

Difficulty: Easy 

Jekyll Island Bike Trail
Image credit Scott Long (CC 3.0)

Jekyll Island Bike Trail is a network of trails and loops over pavement, boardwalks, and bridges. Along the way, you’re sure to see many kinds of wildlife, from deer to gators. You’ll cross beaches and marches and pass landmarks and shops. You’ll ride under Spanish moss and past historic plantation homes. Construction on a connection between Jekyll Island Bike Trail and the East Coast Greenway will begin in 2025. 

5. Big Creek Greenway Trail

Location: Roswell, Georgia 

Distance: 19.7 miles  

Difficulty: Easy 

Big Creek Greenway
Photo credit Androebuck (CC 4.0)

The Big Creek Greenway Trail rides from Cumming to Alpharetta to Roswell. Most of the trail is flat, traffic-free, and shaded. It’s a great starter trail for cycling newbies. The trail is home to lots of deer who aren’t shy to make an appearance. 

6. Arabia Mountain PATH Trail

Location: Lithonia, Georgia  

Distance: 30 miles 

Difficulty: Moderate 

Arabia Mountain PATH Trail
Photo credit TimothyJ Flickr

The Arabia Mountain PATH Trail is only a short distance from downtown Atlanta. It connects with the Rockdale River Trail and many others, so you don’t have to stop riding when the trail ends. On this trail, you’ll see waterfalls, fields, and forests as you ride through Klondike Park and Davidson-Arabia Mountain Nature Preserve. You’ll pass fields of wildflowers, lush meadows, and historic farmland. Come prepared for a ride that will be hilly in some areas. The 3.8-mile Arabia Mountain, Klondike, and Forest Trails Loop on the trail is a favorite of mountain bikers. 

7. Suwanee Greenway Trail  

Location: George Pierce County Park 

Distance: 6.5 miles 

Difficulty: Easy 

Suwanee Creek Trail
Photo credit Hans J E – Flickr

The Suwanee Greenway Trail is easy with some uphills. It’s all paved other than the boardwalk crossings over Suwanee Creek, a creek restored from pollution. You’ll likely spot many frogs, turtles, fish, and birds, among other wildlife. The trail connects to Ivy Creek Greenway in the north. 

8. Carrollton Greenbelt

Location: East Carrollton City Park 

Distance: 18 miles 

Difficulty: Easy

The Carrollton Greenbelt loops around the city of Carrollton and runs through city parks, residential areas, and woods. The route is not too challenging, but it does include several hilly sections. The scenery is tranquil and full of wildlife. You’ll pass many pastures, rivers, and lakes, including Lake Carroll on your ride. The Greenbelt is still in the expansion process, so there are more miles to come. 

9. Blankets Creek MTB Loop 

Location: Blankets Creek MTB Park–Canton, Georgia 

Distance: 11.4

Difficulty: Challenging 

The Blankets Creek MTB Loop is a favorite of mountain bikers. It’s part of the Blankets Creek Mountain Trails network. The trail was created from a partnership between Cherokee County and the US Army Corps of Engineers. The loop has an elevation gain of 1,031 feet and is 

part of the Blankets Creek Mountain Trails network, about 15 miles total with a 3–15% grade. 

10. Columbus Riverwalk 

Location: Fort Benning, Georgia 

Distance: 11.3 miles 

Difficulty: Easy 

Columbus Georgia Riverwalk

The Columbus Riverwalk has been voted one of the best things to do in Columbus, GA more than once. It extends from Lake Oliver to Fort Benning and links Golden Park, Rotary Park, and Rigdon Park. The parks are great fun for the whole family. The trail is partially paved, and the paved sections are clean and wide. The parks are known for their beautiful views and a variety of birds. On parts of the trail, you can ride right next to the Columbus River. 

Many of these trails are great for expert and beginner cyclists. If you’re new to the sport, you can follow our cycling training plan for beginners to work up your mileage and train for one of the our Gran Fondos. And remember that cyclists of all skill levels should make sure they have the proper saddle size and shorts with a good chamois before hitting the trails. 

Georgia has many great cycling trails beyond our top 10 picks. We’d love to hear your favorites! 

 

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Photos used under Creative Commons license 2.0, 3.0, and 4.0

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