Biking Around South Carolina
For biking enthusiasts, look no further than South Carolina, which boasts hundreds of kilometers of diverse bicycling routes. From beautiful beaches along the coast to the vast, pristine wilderness of the Blue Ridge Mountains in the west, South Carolina – a fascinating state in the Southeastern U.S. – beckons bikers to explore its trails.
Biking on Hilton Head Island
My two-wheeled adventure started along the coast, where I discovered the beauty of Hilton Head Island on a bike tour. An award-winning biking paradise, the island boasts over 100 miles of paved biking trails. Here, you can travel anywhere by bike, so I rode by old plantations, through beautiful cypress forests and marshland, before I decided to ride to one of the Island’s many dreamy beaches in Coligny Beach Park. If you don’t want to ride alone, there are biking clubs on the island that meet for scheduled rides.
Myrtle Beach Biking
While you’re vacationing in popular Myrtle Beach, why not explore the wonderful bike trails this coastal destination has to offer? Huntington Beach State Park has more than 25 miles of accessible bike trails that meander along the beach and by Atalaya Castle, a National Historic Landmark home. Meanwhile, the Horry County Bike and Run Park is noticeably more challenging. Nicknamed “The Hulk“ for its resemblance to a certain roller coaster in Orlando, Florida; this trail begins with a nearly 30-foot climb and continues with tight twists and turns that will have your leg muscles burning! This difficult trail is the closest experience you will find to mountain biking in Myrtle Beach.
The Palmetto Trail
When it’s complete, the Palmetto Trail will span more than 420 miles across the state, from Oconee State Park upstate to North of Charleston on the central coast. Currently, 21 counties have more than 300 miles of trails open. Extreme bikers can ride across mountaintops on challenging trails, while others can simply enjoy paved trails in urban areas. Enjoy the outdoors, from the mountains to the sea!
Beautiful Charleston is known for its Southern charm and historic sites such as the Battery, a defensive seawall along the southern edge of the Charleston peninsula. For cyclists, it’s also known as one of the top bike-friendly cities in the United States. Charleston Bicycle Tours offers multi-day bike tour packages with different themes such as Charleston’s Plantations and Quaint Towns or a family bike tour, among other great options. If you prefer to bike alone, I recommend the Swamp Fox trail, one of the oldest bike trails in the area. At more than 40 miles, the Swamp Fox unpaved trail is a unique way to encounter the area’s local wildlife and take in the wonderful scenery.
And in the charming uplands city of Greenville, the Swamp Rabbit Trail is a 17.5-mile, beginner-friendly, multi-use greenway trail that runs along the Reedy River connecting schools, parks and businesses. Bring your own bike, or rent from one of the various companies along the trail.
There is so much more to discover in this fascinating state! The 47 state parks offer endless opportunities for mountain bikers, including trails in the Blue Ridge Mountains, deep in the Northwest of the state. I’ll see you on South Carolina’s bike trails!