We’re big fans of the 22-mile Cape Cod Rail Trail, especially when you take it in bits and pieces. But to be frank, the actual ride, even after the route’s recent refurbishment, can be a real yawner for kids. It’s a former railroad line, straight with very little grade.
We like the ups and downs of biking — which is why we prefer the five-mile Province Lands Bike Trail at the tip of the Cape. This undulating route dips in and out of sand dunes, weaving through scrub-pine forests and along beaches on one of the most glorious bike paths you’ll ever ride.
The loop starts at Herring Cove Beach and heads inland through the Beech Forest, where the trees are often home to colorful warblers. Before sweeping downhill to the Province Lands Visitor Center, we always stop and look at the mounds of sand as they roll to the ocean.
Afterward, we take a dip at Race Point Beach, where the spit of land curves back toward Massachusetts, making it the only spot in New England to watch the sun set over the Atlantic: a perfect ending to a perfect day.
WHEN YOU GO
Province Lands Bike Trail, Provincetown. Access from Cape Cod National Seashore. 508-487-1256, 508-349-3785 (HQ); nps.gov/caco/index.htm