Fall in New Orleans is different from other places in the country. Our weather clings to summer temperatures as long as possible before they turn cold, and our trees basically stay green until the day before all the leaves turn brown and fall down. Still, there are those days– you know these days well– when you can walk out the door without immediately sweating, when you can feel in the air that the city has woken up from its long, lazy summer.
These days call for a bike ride.
Whether you have a bike or you’re renting one, whether you’re biking with friends or riding solo, we’ve got a list of areas in the city where you’ll love to ride around this Fall.
If you’re looking for the longest, most accessible bike trails in the city, you have to turn to the lakefront. Cruise along Lakeshore Drive to get your cardio in while your fellow New Orleanians go crabbing and race sailboats on Lake Pontchartrain. You can ride for up to 15 miles straight along the lakefront, or you can break it up with a stop to relax and fish or fly a kite.
#FrayLife Tip: Start your ride at the east end of Lakeshore Drive so that you can end at one of the many restaurants at the west end, like R and O’s or Deannie’s.
Some days you want to explore and cover a lot of distance; other days you just wanna get outside and take it easy. In the latter situation, Audubon Park is our go-to! The trail here is an easy, beautiful, 2-mile loop. Go around a couple times, feel the wind in your hair, then enjoy the rest of what the park has to offer like a stroll through the zoo or a picnic at The Fly.
If you’re looking to rent a bike for a bit, the downtown area has the highest concentration of bike rentals in the city. Weave through the streets of the French Quarter and take in the sound of street performers and countless displays of the city’s unique culture. When you’re ready for a clear path and some open air, you can ride along the Riverwalk past tons of shops and the Steamboat Natchez. Head to Crescent Park in the Bywater for more riverfront views, or turn up Esplanade Avenue to see all your favorite Jazz Fest houses.
#FrayLife Tip: If you’re looking for a longer ride, Esplanade Avenue connects you right to City Park and Bayou St. John.
One of the oldest and largest parks in the country, City Park boasts about four miles of bike trails. Ride under the shade of the grand, mossy oak trees and around the big, scenic lake. The options are endless if you choose to bike around this park. Make sure you stop for beignets at Morning Call and check out the newest exhibits at NOMA!
#FrayLife Tip: Bring some bread to feed the ducks on the lake (you can do this in Audubon Park, too)!
Start in Harahan or River Ridge and ride along the River Road levee until you’re Uptown! Make sure you know your biking etiquette– the top of the levee is relatively thin, and many of the bikers here are professional cyclists. Hop off the levee where River Road turns into Oak Street, and reward your ride with a burger at Cowbell or Camellia Grill.
Let us know where your biking paths take you this fall in the comments or by tagging #FrayLife or #NOLAFray! Happy riding!
View More Articles By Caroline Collins