Unforgettable Motorcycle Rides Through Florida
Jan 18, 2024Tags:national parksroutesguiderentertravelfl
Whether you're craving a serene ride along the Gulf Coast, an exhilarating journey through central Florida’s hilly terrain, or an adventurous off-road experience in state forests, this guide has you covered with the best motorcycle rides in Florida- both on and off-road. We've compiled a list of the top 10 motorcycle routes across the state, each offering its unique charm and challenges.
From the iconic Overseas Highway connecting Miami to Key West, to the historic Tamiami Trail, and the picturesque Big Bend Scenic Byway, these routes showcase the best of Florida's natural beauty and motorcycle-friendly roads. Get ready for an unforgettable ride through the Sunshine State!
1. Overseas Highway (Miami to Key West)
Start: Miami, FL (U.S. Route 1)
End: Key West, FL (U.S. Route 1)
Approximate Distance: 165 Miles
Take off on a once-in-a-lifetime trip down the Overseas Highway, stretching from Miami to the southernmost tip of Key West. This route offers a unique ride over numerous bridges, including the famous Seven Mile Bridge, with the Atlantic Ocean on one side and the Gulf of Mexico on the other. Key highlights include the scenic views of the Keys, opportunities for outdoor activities, and the vibrant atmosphere of Key West.
2. Tamiami Trail (U.S. Highway 41)
End: Tampa, FL
Approximate Distance: 275 Miles
Experience the diverse landscapes of Florida as you travel the Tamiami Trail (U.S. Highway 41) from Miami to Tampa. This historic route takes you through the heart of the Everglades, offering glimpses of unique wildlife and vast wetlands. Make sure to stop at the various airboat tour locations and enjoy the natural beauty of the Big Cypress National Preserve.
3. Fort Lauderdale to Daytona Beach via A1A
Start: Fort Lauderdale, FL
End: Daytona Beach, FL
Approximate Distance: 240 Miles
Ride along Florida's eastern coastline on the A1A, connecting Fort Lauderdale to Daytona Beach. This picturesque route showcases stunning ocean views, beachside towns, and landmarks like the Kennedy Space Center. Daytona Beach, the home of Daytona Bike Week, is a must-visit for motorcycle enthusiasts.
4. The Green Swamp Loop
Start & End: Zephyrhills, Florida
Approximate Distance: 130 miles
Embark from Zephyrhills on a 130-mile loop that skirts the edges of the Green Swamp Preserve. This route is a peaceful retreat into Central Florida's natural landscape, offering glimpses of diverse wildlife. It's an ideal ride for those seeking tranquility away from Florida's bustling coastal areas. There are multiple roads and highways you can take to go through this loop, including routes that will take you through the preserve.
5. Ocala North OHV Trail - Off-Road Motorcycles Only
Start: Motorcycle Loop Trailhead, FR 66
Approximate Distance: 14-35 Miles
The Motorcycle Loop, exclusive to motorcyclists, presents an exhilarating challenge with its narrow, twisting paths that meander through dense longleaf pine and scrub forests. Spanning 14 miles, this system of interconnected loops can be accessed from the Motorcycle Loop Trailhead situated along FR 66, west of Lake Delancy. Additionally, riders can enter the loop via several connecting trails, including the Hog Valley Trail, Tobacco Patch Trail, Longleaf Pine Trail, and Pipeline Trail. This route is a test of skill and endurance, offering a thrilling ride through the heart of the forest.
For information on the status of this trail, visit the National Forests in Florida’s website.
6. Big Bend Scenic Byway (SR 776) Loop
Start & End: Tallahassee, Florida
Approximate Distance: 220 Miles
The Big Bend Scenic Byway, a picturesque route in Northern Florida, stretches across the Panhandle for about 220 miles and is categorized into two distinct sections. The Forest Trail winds through the lush Apalachicola National Forest, offering secluded, scenic rides, while the Coastal Trail runs along the stunning coastline of Florida's Panhandle, providing spectacular views of the Gulf of Mexico. Many riders choose to explore these segments separately, perhaps dedicating a day to each, but it's also possible to ride the entire byway in a single day.
A particularly favored stretch for a shorter excursion is the 40-mile segment along U.S. 98 from Apalachicola to Bald Point State Park, hugging the coastline and offering a blend of coastal vistas, secluded forests, and seasonal wildflowers.
7. Micanopy Loop (CR 234 & CR 314)
Start & End: Micanopy, FL
Approximate Distance: 40 Miles
Discover the charm of old Florida with the Micanopy Loop. This short but sweet ride takes you through historic Micanopy, showcasing beautiful rural landscapes and historic architecture. It's a perfect route for a leisurely afternoon ride.
8. Croom Motorcycle Area at Withlacoochee State Forest
Start & End: Withlacoochee State Forest
Approximate Distance: 55 Miles
Explore the Croom Motorcycle Area in Withlacoochee State Forest, a vast 2,600-acre expanse perfect for off-roading enthusiasts. Open daily, this area features an extensive network of off-road trails catering to various skill levels, complete with dedicated training spots. It's an ideal off-roading destination for the whole family. Access the Croom Motorcycle Area easily at Exit 301 off of Interstate 75 and State Road 50, located just behind the Quality Inn Hotel, making it a convenient and exciting adventure spot.
9. Florida's Panhandle - Gulf Coast Ride
Start: Pensacola, FL
End: Apalachicola, FL
Approximate Distance: 160 Miles
Experience the unique beauty of the Gulf Coast on this ride through Florida's Panhandle. From the historic streets of Pensacola to the quaint charm of Apalachicola, this route offers stunning gulf views, seafood eateries, and a laid-back atmosphere.
10. Sugarloaf Mountain Road
Start & End: Apopka, Florida
Approximate Distance: 10 Miles
Embark on a captivating journey along the Sugarloaf Mountain Ride, beginning (or ending) in Apopka, FL. This route is a treasure among central Florida motorcyclists for its varied terrain, offering a refreshing change from the state's typically flat landscapes. Traveling along US 441, CR 448, CR 561, and CR 455, riders are treated to a series of hilly inclines and winding turns. The ride unveils stunning views of Lake Apopka and distant glimpses of the Orlando skyline, especially around the picturesque Sugarloaf Mountain. The roads are generally well-maintained, though some offshoot trails provide a more rugged experience. With minimal traffic, this route promises a serene yet thrilling adventure through some of Florida's most scenic landscapes.
Rent a Motorcycle for Your Motorcycle Ride in Florida
Riders Share offers a great opportunity to find the bike you’ve always wanted to ride and rent it at unbeatable prices for your motorcycle rides through Florida. Pick your route, find your bike, and take off on two wheels.