The Best Cycling Routes in Charlotte, North Carolina

Biking in Charlotte | © James Willamor / Flickr
Biking in Charlotte | © James Willamor / Flickr
Photo of Shawndra Russell
13 February 2018

Charlotte, North Carolina, may not have won any awards for being the best cycling city in America, but cycling enthusiasts can find routes long and short in and around the city to keep them occupied. Here are the five best cycling routes in the Queen City.


Consider this 25-mile (32-kilometer) loop if you’re planning on hanging out at Lake Norman after your ride. This route also flows along the shores of Mountain Island. Keep your eyes peeled for the million-dollar houses that occupy these places. Lots of people like to enjoy a picnic or camping at the Mountain Island Lake before or after a ride.

One of my favorite places with one of my favorite persons.

A post shared by Brad Strahm (@knownleone) on

Huntersville Business Park

For a shorter ride, head to this park for an easygoing three-mile (4.8-kilometer) loop. Locals particularly love it for being a safe and well-lit route, and it too has easy access to Lake Norman.

Sunset over Lake Norman | © Fran Jeanes / Flickr

Mallard Creek to Clark’s Creek Greenways

Mecklenburg County, where Charlotte resides, has a number of greenways that together create nearly 200 miles (322 kilometers) of developed and undeveloped trails. This section comprises seven of those miles, with many weaving through the UNC-Charlotte area.

McAlpine Greenway

Another part of the greenway that runs near Charlotte’s University, this section can be an add-on for your Mallard Creek section, as it’s only four miles (6.4 kilometers) long. Nature lovers will also enjoy the rich wildlife in the area, including almost 200 species of birds.

McAlpine Greenway | © NC Wetlands / Flickr


Head out of town northeast 15 miles (24 kilometers) in order to jump on this 25-mile (40-kilometer) route in Harrisburg. Plan for an ascent of about 900 feet (274 meters). This route begins and ends near Hickory Ridge High School.

Little Sugar Creek Greenway

This path is great for those who want to add some fun stops between pedaling. Indeed, this greenway connects Birdsong Brewing to many other hot spots in NoDa and beyond. A five-mile (eight-kilometer) stretch around Uptown will eventually become a 19-mile (30.5-kilometer) greenway.

Little Sugar Creek Greenway Urban Section Pedestrian Downtown | © ITRE Bicycle and Pedestrian Program/Flickr

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