Author Topic: Cycling Around Washington DC  (Read 2027 times)

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Cycling Around Washington DC
« on: January 28, 2020, 01:54:58 pm »

I set up a track, Baltimore MD, Washington DC, Cumberland MD, Moorefield WV, Strasburg VA , Staunton VA, Charlottesville VA, Richmond VA, Norfolk VA, Kiptopeke VA, Pocomoke City MD, Dover DE, Newark DE, Baltimore MD. It is about 1600kms (1000miles) in total. We are in the USA from 29-may - 27 june 2020.
We are from The Netherlands, it is our first trip in the USA. I expect this trip to be quite different from those in Europe. Has anyone tips about camping, overnigth stay in cheaper hotels or other means? What can we expect, what do we HAVE to see in this trip? Any tip is welcome.  We arrive at IAD (Dulles) Airport and we want to start the trip there going to a hotel in Arlington. From there to Baltimore, where we have relatives, and then start the trip as mentioned. We will leave also via Dulles Airport. Has anyone experience how to get your bike packed for air transport  from Dulles airport?
Another question we have is are we allowed to cycle on all road types or are some excluded and how do I recognise those?
« Last Edit: January 29, 2020, 12:35:58 pm by »

Offline jcostanz

Re: Cycling Around Washington DC
« Reply #1 on: January 28, 2020, 05:35:59 pm »
For inexpensive overnights, there is, not in my comfort level,  Campgrounds, but pricing and restrictions vary.  Some are listed as seasonal only, some will not accept tents, some have minimum number of night reservations, especially around holiday weekends.  It is not unusual for State park campgrounds to have a reservation fee from $5 -$15 per reservation.  Airbnb is a great option in many locations where options are few.  you can usually find hostels in the cities,  Washington DC has one reasonably close to the main attractions.  Finally hotels and motels.

You might want to include the state in several of the cities listed, as several towns with the same name in the area but in different directions and may not be the ones commonly thought of.  Cumberland is usually thought of as the one in Maryland at the C&O canal- Great Allegheny Passage rail trail trail, north west of Washington, not the Virginia.  Newark New Jersey is more well known than the Newark Delaware which I believe is on your route. 

Going by your towns listed, from Washington to Charlottesville you are heading well into the mountains, you might want to look at the Skyline Drive and Blue Ridge Parkway,  These are lower speed limit scenic roadways but can be very hilly! and are close to your listed towns.

It looks like you will be going up the Atlantic coast from Norfolk.  You will need to catch the shuttle across the Chesapeake Bay Bridge Tunnel as cycling is not allowed for safety.

Crossing the Susquehanna river at Harve De Grace, North East of Baltimore, is unknown as several years ago there was a pilot program to allow cyclist to use this bridge during limited days and times, the nearest crossing was west near Berkley on US 1.

As for must see,  I definitely recommend the Holocaust memorial/museum in DC.  The Air & Space Museum both in Washington, DC and the one next to Dulles airport, the Steven F Hdvar-Hazy Center.  Any of the other museums/sites depending on your interests while in Washington, DC.  It is very easy to spend days visiting all the sites in DC alone. 

Near you route, near Norfolk is Colonial Williamsburg, a 1600-1700 recreation site.

When do you plan on touring?  Finding accomidations late May (Memorial day weekend), Early July (July 4 Independance Day) and Early Sepetember (Labor Day) can be tricky and costly.  If you are touring on July 4th you will find most towns and cities having firework displays.

Offline BikeliciousBabe

Re: Cycling Around Washington DC
« Reply #2 on: January 29, 2020, 11:09:50 am »
A link to the planned route would be helpful.


Re: Cycling Around Washington DC
« Reply #3 on: January 29, 2020, 12:39:13 pm »
A link to the planned route would be helpful.
Hallo BikeliciousBabe, I added the states to all city names mentioned. I also added some more info and questions

Offline canalligators

Re: Cycling Around Washington DC
« Reply #4 on: February 01, 2020, 12:20:36 am »
You are landing at Dulles, going north to Baltimore, then going back the same way to Georgetown.  Instead, could you go Dulles to Cumberland, continue your loop anti-clockwise to Baltimore then Dulles?  Or reverse it and go clockwise?

As for lodging, go to Google Maps and search on "Lodging".  That will show all the choices - motels, bed and breakfasts, hotels, campgrounds.  Be advised that B&Bs in the US are often premium service with high cost.  Also, choose motels carefully, some privately owned ones are not very nice.  We have had good luck finding reasonably-priced, non-chain motels on


Re: Cycling Around Washington DC
« Reply #5 on: February 01, 2020, 04:27:57 am »
Thanks for your tip about lodging. The trip is under revision. We skip the Appalachian part, going south from Harpers Ferry to Charlottesville and Norfolk and from there extend the trip along the east coast up to Philadelphia and going back to Baltimore.

Offline David W Pratt

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Re: Cycling Around Washington DC
« Reply #6 on: February 01, 2020, 07:16:18 am »
Were I doing it, I would budget a couple of days for sightseeing in Washington, DC.  The city is flat, and filled with some nice architecture and loads of free museums.  In the city there is, I believe, an international hostel. Good luck, and welcome