Atlanta Bike Trails: 16 Places to Explore on Wheels

Seasoned bikers, families, and little ones just learning – no matter who you are, Spring is a great time to get out on your bike. And Atlanta is a vibrant place to do it. We hope you enjoy these Atlanta Bike Trails. If you know of more, please let us know! We have included updated information for 2020 as many parks and trails have various services closed or unavailable due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

Please note: During the COVID-related Stay at Home order, you should check to be sure the park/trail of your choice is open before you head out the door.

Silver Comet Trail

The Silver Comet Trail runs west through Cobb, Paulding, and Polk counties. This quiet, non-motorized, paved trail is for walkers, hikers, bicyclists, rollerbladers, horses, dog walkers, and is wheelchair accessible.

2020 update: After being closed for several weeks during the Shelter in Place order due to Covid-19, the trail has now reopened. Though rest room facilities, playgrounds and athletic fields are still closed. Visitors are asked to take “personal responsibility” to ensure their safety and to continue to follow the CDC’s recommendations for slowing the spread of COVID-19.

The Silver Comet Trail is 61.5 miles long, and starts at the Mavell Road Trailhead in Smyrna, Georgia. It ends at the Georgia/Alabama state line, near Cedartown and The Esom Hill Trailhead.

Parking: See this map for trail heads along the route (ie. places to park)
Distance: 61 miles
Difficulty: 
Very Easy
Rentals Available? The Silver Comet Depot rents, sells and repairs bicycles. The Depot is located at 4342 Floyd Road, Mableton, GA 30126 on the Silver Comet Trail [mile marker 4.2].
Open: The trail is open from dawn to dusk. Due to the seclusion and lack of lighting, the buddy system is recommended for early morning and evening workouts.

Stone Mountain Trail PATH

The Stone Mountain Trail is a 19 mile paved path which links Midtown Atlanta to Stone Mountain Park. It includes the Freedom Park Trail and intersects with the Atlanta Beltline along the way.

2020 update: While Stone Mountain Park attractions are closed now, the hiking and bike trails ARE open. Be sure to bring your own water and food as the snack facilities are not open.

Please note that the trail does require on-street travel for almost four miles, in Candler Park and through Clarkston. These sections may not be suitable for children or beginners.

Please note this and many other trails listed here are part of the PATH Foundation which has been building a network of off-road trails in and around Atlanta for walkers, runners, cyclists and skaters for more than 25 years. This system of scenic greenways preserve our region’s forested character and offer opportunities for families to enjoy nature together.

Parking: See this map for parking opportunities along route
Distance: 19 miles
Difficulty : 
Moderate – Advanced. There is a short but very steep climb where Stonewall Jackson Drive meets the inner Stone Mountain loop.

Big Creek Greenway

Big Creek Greenway is traffic-free and relatively flat, which makes it great for families and beginners. It includes plenty of opportunities for bathroom breaks, benches, and water-breaks.

The neighborhoods of Alpharetta, Roswell, and Cumming afford a shaded ride and escape to the northern burbs, with far less hustle and bustle than the city. The trail is both paved and soft mulch.

Parking: See this page for parking information.
Distance: 13.5 miles. See this map for section lengths.
Difficulty: 
Easy

Rico Starr Loop

More advanced bikers can enjoy the Rico Starr Loop (or the longer Cedar Grove Loop) through Serenbe, south of the city. It’s a street-ride, but the streets in the area are trafficked less than the city, and you’ll love the trees.


Parking: See this map from Peachtree Bikes for the loop. Park in Serenbe.
Distance: 21 Miles
Difficulty: 
Easy to Moderate. it’s mostly flat, but it is a long loop.

Arabia Mountain PATH

The Arabia Mountain PATH officially contains dozens of smaller rides, which I’ve broken out below based on my own experiences.

2020 update: Sections of the Arabia Mountain PATH, the 33+ mile multi-use trail that runs throughout the area, remain open for use. Please practice physical distancing as you enjoy the trail. Note that the section of trail along Browns Mill Road (immediately south of the Polebridge trailhead) is closed due to construction. Nature Centers and the Monastery of the Holy Spirit are all closed.

For the full official map, see here. I prefer this map from Arabia Mountain, though.

Ride 1: Park at either the Arbia Mtn Nature Center or the AWARE parking lot, and head toward the quarry ruins and covered bridge. (On the Arabia Mtn map, head toward 5, 6, and 7 on the map (and back) for a good 1.5 hour ride with kids.

Ride 2: Park at Panola Mountain State Park and ride down to Alexander Lake, circling the lake and back through the barn for a lovely 1.5 hour round trip (again, that was our time with kids.) On the Arabia Mtn map, that’s riding toward 16, 14, 15, then back to 14 as a balloon loop before heading back to the parking lot. 17 is a Serpentine Bridge…not to bike over, but as a point of interest. We have yet to make it that far, but I’m dying to check it out.

Ride 3: We have yet to do this one (it’s on the plan, so I will update when we can) but I’ve read about it in numerous places. Park at South Rockdale Community Park and take the trail back toward Panola Mountain. I’ve heard this part of the trail is very hilly, but the wetlands make it worth it. Have you been?

Ride 4: From the Monastery of the Holy Sprit to Rockdale Community Park. I believe Ride 3+4 together make up what is called the Rockdale River Trail. Although the Monastery is closed as of this writing, parking is plentiful and the grounds are open. It is a wonderful place to spread out a picnic on the expansive lawn and let the kids run around. There is also an avenue of magnolia trees that are perfect for climbing. Although you can’t go into the Heritage Center, you can peak through the gates at the bonsai trees the gift shop sells.

Location: See the official map here. Other parking notes above.
Distance: 30+ miles
Difficulty: 
Moderate. My young kids are able to handle most of it with ease, but there are a few hills they have to walk their bikes up.

Camp Creek Greenway

Camp Creek Greenway is a 4.2-mile multi-use trail originating in Lilburn City Park. The greenway is constructed of sidewalk and boardwalk and features the first PermaTrak (precast concrete) bridge in Georgia. 

2020 Update: Concessions, rest rooms and bike rentals may not be available currently.

Parking: Parking available at Lilburn City ParkLions Club Park, and Velva Court.
Distance: 4.2 Miles
Difficulty: 
Easy
Rentals Available? Affordable rentals are available in the trailer located next to the tennis courts in Lilburn City Park. Check their Facebook page for rental and concession status.
Open: Dawn to Dusk

Chastain Memorial Park

The bike path at Chastain Memorial isn’t long, but it is strenuous. We love the trees, but not the crowds so we tend to visit this one during the day and not the weekends.

2020 Update: One of the most unique places to go for a bike ride right now is at Chastain Park. For the first time, bike riders and pedestrians are allowed to use the trails and paths on the golf course. The golf course remains closed until at least May 15. Until then only the public areas of the park will remain open. The playground and all other programmed recreational areas will remain closed. (Note, the Light Family Pavilion public restrooms at the playground remain open)  When using the golf course, the park asks everyone do your part to encourage family and friends to protect the course so we can continue its use as a welcomed social distance measure.  
Parking: Find a map here, with parking options.
Distance: 3.1 miles
Difficulty: 
Moderate

Noonday Creek Trail

There are currently 2 sections of this trail…a short one in Woodstock (about 1 mile long near Woofstock Park) and another 6 mile section in Cobb County. Eventually they should connect, but since they do not yet, we’re focusing on the 6 miles stretch.

2020 Update: The Noonday Creek Trail is open but the park asks visitors to use it responsibly and to use socially-distancing measures. Zagster has suspended operations so no bike rentals are available.

This is all paved and relatively flat, but the only draw back is that it crosses several busy roads. It’s also close to a main road in many places, which makes it less than ideal for kids, but fine for adults.
Location: The north eastern trailhead is at 3015 Bells Ferry Road – it’s the best place for parking.
Distance: 6-miles
Difficulty: 
Easy, but crossing busy roads.
Rentals Available? Zagster rentals are available near the trailhead.

Eastside Beltline Trail

These 11 miles of Eastside trail ways are probably Atlanta’s most well known and loved…the heartbeat of downtown Atlanta

2020 Update: The Atlanta Beltline is open but officials are trying to make sure those who are using it are participating in socially-distancing measures. They ask that the Beltline is reserved for seniors and those susceptible to Covid-19 before 10am and that it be reserved for work and essential transportation after 4pm. Most bike rental companies have suspended operations.

While you’re exploring, don’t forget the West End Trail.  It stretches 2.4 miles from White Street to Westview Cemetery, seamlessly connecting several Southwest Atlanta neighborhoods, including historic West End, Mozely Park and Westview.

Also, The Northside Trail through Tanyard Creek Park treats visitors to one of the most scenic stretches of the Atlanta BeltLine. The Northside Trail was the first segment of the Atlanta BeltLine trail to open on the north side of Atlanta, and it serves a connector for two previously existing trails.

Parking: Add your address here for access points.
Distance: 11 miles
Difficulty: 
Easy
Rentals Available? Try Relay Bike Share, Atlanta Bicycle Barn or the electric generated red bikes dotting the line.

Suwanee Greenway

This greenway in Gwinnett includes paved paths and boardwalks over wetlands for a really fun ride. Be prepared to see wildlife; I’ve heard of people happening upon deer, rabbits, turtles and more.

2020 Update: From the park: Mountain biking irresponsibly during the COVID-19 pandemic puts you and others at risk. Riding injuries put unnecessary stress on medical systems that need all available resources to fight the virus, and group rides increase your chances of exposure. Please follow all local health authority directives, and DO NOT take risks.

Parking: See here for address and trail point locations.
Distance: 6.3 miles round trip (Add 2.5 miles by turning right at the end of the boardwalk to follow the paved Ivy Creek Greenway Trail)
Difficulty: 
easy

South Peachtree Creek Trail 

This gem is near our house and on our regular rotation of biking trails – we love it. The trailhead is tucked near the tennis center at Mason Mill Park in Decatur.

The newest trail section connects Emory University’s Clairmont Campus at Starvine Way, safely routing you underneath Clairmont Road before heading past Clairmont Lake toward Mason Mill.


Location: Find a map here with various parking options
Distance: 3.6 miles round trip from Mason Mill to Medlock Park and back.
Difficulty (per trail owner): 
easy

Proctor Creek Trail

3.5 miles are open now, as best I can read, but the greenway is expected to eventually link Maddox Park and the Beltline’s Westside Trail for a total of seven miles out to the Chattahoochee River.

2020 Update: The Atlanta Beltline is open but officials are trying to make sure those who are using it are participating in socially-distancing measures. They ask that the Beltline is reserved for seniors and those susceptible to Covid-19 before 10am and that it be reserved for work and essential transportation after 4pm.

Parking: See this map
Distance: 3.5 miles (That is the last report we can find. It’s from 2018, though, so more may be opened now.)
Difficulty: 
Easy

East Cobb Park

This is a great park for young kids to begin to feel comfortable on their bike. At only 1 mile, I almost hesitated to add it…but everyone needs a place to learn! With the playground and regular activities, it’s just a fun place to explore.

2020 Update: In the interest of public health and to encourage social distancing, East Cobb Park remains closed until Monday, May 11. While green space will re-open on May 11, park buildings, restrooms and playgrounds will remain closed

Location: 3322 Roswell Road Marietta
Distance: 1 mile paved
Difficulty: 
Easy

Carrollton Greenbelt

The Carrollton Greenbelt is an 16-mile circular trail around the City of Carrollton. The trail traverses the University of West Georgia campus, skirts the Sunset Hills Golf Course, visits marshes and parks and scores of neighborhoods.

2020 Update:

  • The GreenBelt is OPEN. Playgrounds, restrooms, and parks are CLOSED.
  • You must practice social distancing. Stay at least 6 feet away from people outside of your household.
  • Zagster closed the Bike Share program until further notice. Riding your own bike is ok as long as you practice social distancing.
  • Avoid peak hours. Late mornings and evenings seem to be the busiest on the GreenBelt. Take your walk, run or bike ride when there are less users on the trail and keep your distance.
  • Share the trail, not the spread.

Parking: Find all parking and trailhead distance info here.
Distance: 16.3 miles
Difficulty: 
Easy-Moderate (several sections require crossing major roads)

Nancy Creek Trail

This was another “regular” bike ride for us when we lived in the area a few years ago. It’s a great bike ride in the city that shows off why Atlanta is known as a “City in a Forest.”

The Nancy Creek Trail connects Murphy-Candler Park to Blackburn Park and Johnson Ferry Estates in the City of Brookhaven. The trail begins at the southern end of Murphy-Candler Lake and ends at Ashton Woods Retirement Center on Durden Drive.

Location: Find parking places here. We prefer parking at Murphy-Candler.
Distance: 5.4 Miles round trip
Difficulty: 
Easy

Michelle Obama Walking Trail

We recently happened along this PATH trail when we were visiting Ferns of the World on the GSU Decatur Campus. It connects the campus to the radio controlled air field on Constitution Road via Gresham Park and Sugar Creek Golf Course.

2020 Update: While the parks and trails remain open, if you visit a park, or any other public location, follow CDC guidance on how to protect yourself and including those for social distancing. Additional operational updates will be available as issued and can be found at www.dekalbcountyga.gov/coronavirus. The following  facilities, parks, events and activities will be suspended until May 30.

  • Recreation Centers
  • Naturalists program’s at Davidson-Arabia Mountain Nature Center and Mason Mill Park
  • Porter Sanford III Performing Arts and Community Center
  • Sugar Creek Golf and Tennis Center
  • Playgrounds
  • Rentals
  • After School program’s 
  • Athletic program’s
  • Senior program’s ( 34th Annual Senior Olympic Games) 
  • Special events
  • Fitness stations

It features a trail head near Bouldercrest Road and Constitution, a tunnel under Bouldercrest Road, scenic overlooks of the South River, a bridge over Sugar Creek, and spur trails to surrounding neighborhoods.

FYI, it was previously called the South River Trail but was renamed the Michelle Obama Walking Trail in honor the former first lady, in January 2018.

Location: Park either at the GSU Decatur Campus trailhead off Pantherville Rd or the Radio Control Airfield.
Distance: 5.6 Miles
Difficulty: 
Easy

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Lesli Peterson

Lesli Peterson

Lesli made her way to Atlanta over 20 years ago, after living in Germany, Japan and six U.S. states. She relishes the discovery of obscure, offbeat and unwonted places, and she will chat up any willing stranger to uncover a new secret locale.

After 18 years in software development, Lesli bailed on the corporate scene. When she’s not traveling, she’s hiking in the mountains or checking out Atlanta’s culinary scene, whiskey in hand.

Lesli has two kiddos -Cooper and Elliot- plus two bonus kids currently at UGA, and she’s happily married to her soul mate.
Lesli Peterson

1 Comment on "Atlanta Bike Trails: 16 Places to Explore on Wheels"

  1. Is there a brochure or book for all of this info? I would love to have it. PLs let me know. And thanks for sharing this – very timely!! Stay well.

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