Cycling in Nova Scotia
From relaxing rails-to-trails cycling adventures through coastal communities, to the sweeping views of the ocean on the world-renowned, heart-pumping Cabot Trail, Nova Scotia has an ideal ride for you! Whether it’s a cycling tour, group ride or a solo outing down a quiet country road, check out the route maps below to start planning your itinerary.
Bike Friendly Certified Businesses
Bike Friendly Certification is a recognition and training program for businesses and institutions that support bicycle commuting, bicycle travel and bicycle tourism experiences in Nova Scotia.
Nova Scotia's Destination Trails
Following former rail lines, these multi-use trails connect our communities and provide great off-road cycling. With several trailheads and access points, you can easily explore the communities and nearby attractions on and off trail - creating your own adventure. Community kiosks and interpretive panels along the trails provide a glimpse into local history and culture.
Connect to Cape Breton’s Celtic culture on this 92-kilometer (57 mile) route that hugs the coastline from Port Hastings to Inverness. Join a toe-tapping ceilidh at Celtic Music Interpretive Centre in Judique or The Red Shoe Pub in Mabou, relax at warm water beaches in Port Hood, West Mabou and Inverness. Discover award-winning flavours at Glenora Distillery and world-renowned golf at Cabot Links and Cabot Cliffs.
Rich in history, this 119-kilometer (74 mile) trail connects the historic city of Halifax and Lunenburg, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, passing through the coastal communities of Hubbards, Chester, and Mahone Bay. Savour local flavours at award-winning restaurants, explore beaches, trails, and nearby attractions, and shop at galleries and stores, showcasing locally-produced products.
The 117-kilometre Harvest Moon Trailway traverses the Annapolis Valley through beautiful towns, connecting the Landscape of Grand Pré UNESCO World Heritage Site to the historic seaside town of Annapolis Royal. Discover the area’s rich Acadian heritage and abundant culinary experiences, from local farm markets and u-picks to award-winning wineries, cideries, breweries and restaurants.
Cycling Route Highlights
- Pedal your way through self-guided adventures, tour food and wine with a side of Acadian heritage on the Grand Pré - Blomidon Route, or cycle with the sunrise through the rolling farmland and seaside villages between Pictou - Pugwash.
- Discover Acadian joie-de-vivre as you cycle the land of sea and song, amazed by local storytellers in Yarmouth - St. Mary’s Bay, or ride the coast between Hubbards - LaHave, exploring the colourful towns of Chester, Mahone Bay and Lunenburg.
- Explore the Annapolis Valley’s coastal communities, breathtaking countryside, and rolling hills through a series of self-guided rides for all levels.
- Sign up for a Bike & Yoga tour of the historic and scenic South Shore led by renowned tour operators, Freewheeling Adventures. For a culinary adventure by bike, take a two-wheel winery tour in the Wolfville area, or get the inside scoop from a local foodie as you explore Halifax by pedal and foot with I Heart Bikes.
- Pedal quiet coastal roads, through fishing villages and along remote, pristine, rugged inlets. Visit heritage villages, meet local fishers, pick up fresh seafood, and immerse yourself in nature on the 100 Wild Islands and Sherbrooke - Guysborough routes.
Cycling the Cabot Trail
For a real challenge, take a trip by bike around the Cabot Trail, one of the most highly-rated cycling routes in the world! Tackle the terrain with gusto on self-guided adventures, or take the sightseeing-by-van tour option when the elevation is too challenging.
Gran Fondo Events in Nova Scotia
Gran Fondo Baie Sainte-Marie
The Gran Fondo Baie Sainte-Marie, Nova Scotia's first annual Gran Fondo cycling event, appeals to everyone from recreational riders looking for an epic ride, to those that like to tour by bike, and also to the avid racer. While it is a timed event, it is more of a fun, self-paced group event, rather than a race, offering participants three options:
- Gran loop (117 km)
- Medio Fondo (67 km)
- Piccolo Fondo (35 km)
Riders will navigate rolling inland roads and pass by towering wooden churches along the panoramic coastal route, hugging beautiful Baie Sainte-Marie. The area's rich Acadian culture is highlighted, with opportunities to sample Acadian fare at nutrition breaks during the Gran Fondo.
Lost Shores Gran Fondo
The annual Lost Shores Gran Fondo in Guysborough offers five low traffic oceanfront routes, from 3 km to 120 km in length, to suit every fitness level. Taking place in a largely undiscovered corner of Nova Scotia, the oceanfront loop connects over 20 fishing communities, offering sweeping views of the rugged coast with refreshing ocean breezes.
- Fear and Loathing Hill Climb (3 km)
- Tickle Loop (120 km)
- Lost Shores Loop (90 km)
- Queensport Light (50 km)
- Intervale Loop (35 km)
- Rail Trail Loop (30 km)