This is the first in a three part series of places to ride. We all love to ride with our families, partners and many of us enjoy road riding. All of these recommendations are based on personal rides from the staff. These recommendations have been made to riders just like yourself and have received lots of positive feedback.

Of course all of us in the store love to learn what your riding needs and preferences are and then we can make recommendations based on your needs and riding preferences. Just come on by.

I hope you enjoy these rides. Let us know what you think and what other rides are your favorite.

When thinking about family friendly rides we are thinking about rides that have kid friendly things to do along the way and are safe for children to ride.

Cross Island Trail

The Cross Island trail runs west to east for six miles across Kent Island. One of the things we love about this trail is that it doesn’t feel like a typical multi use trail. It feels more like you are riding at the beach as the trail meanders along and crosses water allowing a great opportunity to spot wildlife. The cool thing about this trail is all the great things to do along the way with your kids.

The trail starts at Terrapin Nature Park. You can walk out to the Eastern Shore of the Chesapeake Bay and have a great view of the Bay Bridge and enjoy a small beach area. As you head East on the trail you come across an old grave yard that is worth a few minutes to explore. Old Love Point Park is your next big area you come across. Filled with sports fields and another great area to park to start your ride as Terrapin Nature Park can be sometimes be full. If it is be sure to check out the park still.

As you continue riding east you will cross Cox Creek and then come upon the lower portion of Northeast Bay. A little further is Piney Creek. Shortly after Piney Creek you’ll have an opportunity to take a left to explore the Chesapeake Heritage & Visitors Center on your way to Ferry Point Park. Both of these you won’t want to miss. There is some exploring to do at the Visitor Center with some boats the kids can check out and photo opportunities.

The Visitor Center property also has the entrance to Ferry Point Park with a boardwalk that crosses the marsh and takes you out to views of the Chester River. At the point you’ll be able to watch boats passing through Kent Narrows and likely run across people fishing. This is a great location for a picnic or head just a little farther on the trail to enjoy one of the many restaurants along Kent Narrows.

Your last point of interest is riding across the old Kent Narrows Drawbridge. On the Eastern Side of the narrows there are lots of options for places to eat.

The trail proceeds a little further but ultimately ends. If you want to continue your exploring more you can follow Main Street to where it ends at Route 50 just across from the Queenstown Outlets. This portion is on road riding and not a trail or marked bike lane.

BWI Trail

Picture of the Thomas Dixon Observation Area

The BWI Trail is a 12 mile multi use loop that goes around the Baltimore Washington International Airport. The best place to park and access the trail is at the Thomas Dixon Jr. Observation Area that is located off of Dorsey Road. There is a playground for the kids and the area is right next to the approach for the primary runway. If this is full which it can be on the weekend there are some business parks just west that are on the trail for parking.

The trail is relatively flat but not completely flat. On the north side there is a long gradual climb to the Andover Observation Area offering a great view that looks out over the airport. Then as you leave that area (if you’re riding clockwise) you will come across some sculptures and ride through a horse farm. There is a short hill that passes through the farm.

Another fun feature is a wood bridge that crosses Stoney Run on the west side of the trail. On the north side there is a spur of the trail that will take you to the Amtrak Station if you want to check it out. You’ll also cross a light rail track and may see the light rail train as you explore the trail. Planes and trains all in one ride, what is there not for a child to love.

Looking for another fun activity if the cycling hasn’t worn you out? There is a Miniature Golf Course and Driving Range on the East Side of the Observation area.

If you are hungry proceed West on Dorsey Road.

Mount Vernon Trail is another option for riding with your family. Learn more about it under our blog post about places to ride as a couple (publishing soon). Or here where I talk about my ride with Amanda on the Trail