Explore the Hershey Harrisburg Region by bike, pedaling around Harrisburg doing some sight-cycling or off-roading on the challenging mountain bike trails in Hershey. Below is your guide to ride including recommended bike trails in Harrisburg & Hershey, sights along the way, bicycle rentals, and more!
The Capital Area Greenbelt is a 20-mile bike loop through the city of Harrisburg that includes on-road sections and dedicated paved and gravel paths. The Greenbelt has ample options for parking at its trailheads and passes by a variety of landscapes including the Susquehanna River along Riverfront Park.
It’s up to you where you want to hop on the Greenbelt. With a little planning, you can plot your ride with stops for lunch and attractions.
Things to See Along the Capital Area Greenbelt
Shorter Rides on the Capital Area Greenbelt
Riverfront Park: The super-scenic Riverfront Park stretch is 3.9 miles from Shipoke to Vaughn Streets, and features artwork, sculptures, gardens, and panoramic views of the river. Make it an out and back journey with a stop for lunch in Downtown or Midtown Harrisburg.
Cameron Street Parkway: This 1.6-mile (3.2 round trip) route includes the Five Senses Garden and the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial.
Paxtang Parkway: This 1.4-mile (2.8 round trip) path features mature trees that provide shade on hot summer days.
Wildwood Park: Park at Wildwood and take the 3.1-mile loop that includes the Wildwood Way Trail and Towpath Trail. Coming in May 2020 there’ll be a Greenbelt extension to explore Fort Hunter Mansion & Park, a 40-acre property filled with Harrisburg history and its share of beautiful views of the water.
Free Tours of the Capital Area Greenbelt
The Capital Area Greenbelt Association offers free, guided bike tours highlighting Nature, Trail History, Future Trail Plans, and Local History. There’s a four-person minimum to book a bike tour, and children must be at least 10 years old with one adult for every four youths.
Take a scenic, easy ride around Hershey The Sweetest Place On Earth® on the 13.5-mile Jonathan Eshenour Memorial Trail. The trail takes you on a tour of Hershey’s neighborhoods and communities and includes access to various parks and picnic areas. Be cautious of walkers, joggers, children, and pets along this multi-purpose trail. Before or after your ride, stop by the Cocoa Beanery for a coffee or a bite to eat on their patio.
We love to encourage visitors to go off the beaten path, but these are some of the area’s tried and true mountain biking trails maintained by the Susquehanna Area Mountain Bike Association.
Parkway Trails System: Along the Capital Area Greenbelt, you’ll find a few mountain biking trails that take you off road then bring you right back on the paved path again. The Parkway Trails System includes the Cameron Parkway Loop (4.1 miles) with intermediate to expert sections and the Paxtang Parkway Loop (5.2 miles) with novice, intermediate, and expert sections. If you’re new to mountain biking, start with the Dock Woods loop featuring .4 miles of beginner/practice paths.
Hershey Medical Center Trail System: This sweet trail system encompasses 10 miles with beginner, advanced and expert trails in the hilly area behind the Penn State Hershey Medical Center. The terrain is generally rocky and rugged with technical and challenging treks on the West and open, flowing trails on the East. Some of the trails include manmade features like ramps over fallen trees and other course enhancements. There’s a good chance you’ll encounter some wildlife like Pennsylvania’s official state animal, whitetail deer, grazing in the fields. The trails are accessible via the 13.5-mile Jonathan Eshenour Memorial Trail.
Meet some local SAMBA mountain bikers on a group ride on the Parkway or HMC Trails, or one of the region’s other mountain biking areas. SAMBA maintains more than 65 miles in Central PA. Here are a few more trails outside the Hershey Harrisburg Region, perfect for an active day trip then back in time for dinner.
Saddle up for road cycling adventure between Harrisburg & Hershey and explore the communities and neighborhoods that make up our region. Here are a couple of routes we found between the two metros as well as the Map My Ride pages for Harrisburg & Hershey to find the best trek for you.
While you’re riding around town, it’s important to ride responsibly and obey Pennsylvania Bicycle Safety Laws. Here’s a quick sampling of our bike laws from PennDOT.
Couldn’t bring your bike along on this trip? Rent a cruiser bicycle for a few hours with Zagster Bike Share. The bikes have adjustable seat heights for adult riders, front and rear safety lights, fenders and chain guard to keep your ankles clean, and a basket for your belongings.
The Hershey area has 10 self-serve bike rental locations including the Penn State Hershey Medical Center, Cocoa Beanery, Downtown Hershey, and Hummelstown. The City of Harrisburg also has 10 racks including City Island, Pennsylvania State Capitol, and several locations along Riverfront Park.
Flat tire? Broken spoke? If you encounter an issue with your equipment, here are a few resources for you: