From its beautiful nature reserves and miles of coastline to its bustling cities with designated paved pathways, Puerto Rico offers an abundance of scenic trails for every cyclist. Our beautiful landscape and palpable heritage means cycling through the scenery offers more than a few Instagram-worthy vistas and locales, many of which the average tourist will never lay eyes on.

Sometimes, though, the most incredible photos come not from finding new and unique destinations, but from looking at old favorites from a new perspective and seeing them in a different light. In that respect, spectacular photo opportunities are around every corner in Puerto Rico, just waiting to be unearthed.

If you want to explore Puerto Rico by way of the island’s many roads, coastal boardwalks and biking trails, this is your guide to finding some Instagrammable hidden gems along the way.
Escape the Traffic in Ponce
Puerto Rico’s second largest city, Ponce, is known as “Ciudad Señorial," or Noble City, thanks to its many neoclassical buildings and art nouveau architecture. With so much to see, the best way to explore the city is by bike. Weave through historic streets to get some photographs of the colorful entries, doors, windows and metal work on homes and businesses. Ponce’s Veredas del Labrador linear park also features a trail connecting the La Guancha boardwalk with the downtown area. Cyclists can ride along Río Portugués all the way to the river delta.

Ponce is also a sailing city, and if you want to capture an ocean view that’s out of the ordinary, it’s a great place to visit. In the daylight, there’s something dramatic about the waterfront’s many boats, large and small, bobbing in the water. But at night, the scene becomes even more memorable, as the boat lights reflect on the water and the boardwalk comes alive with music. Cycle along La Guancha in the evening to see the city — quite literally — in a whole new light. Be sure to bring along your camera to truly capture this spectacle.

An Alternative Perspective of El Morro Fort
San Juan is a great place for cycling, with wide sidewalks and biking paths that lead to many scenic views and historic sites — including the Castillo San Felipe del Morro citadel. Resist the standard photo ops that attract countless visitors every year, and instead seek out some often-missed perspectives, such as from the cemetery at the side of the fortification, with gravestones dating back hundreds of years. Or, get a shot looking up at the castle wall, instead of looking down from the castle onto the ocean. Take the Paseo del Morro trail to walk on the coastline and capture a dramatic view of the huge, ancient rock wall.

Lush Nature at Paseo Piñones
About 18 miles east of El Morro, you’ll find the beginning of Paseo Piñones — a six-mile trail consisting of both wooden boardwalks and paved section, which are used by both walkers and cyclists. This trail traverses sand dunes, lagoons and mangrove forests, and passes numerous kiosks where you can stop and refuel with a selection of traditional fried treats. While the waterfront offers several great photo ops, the real treasures can be found in the mangrove forest. Entering this tropical environment, you’ll discover moss hanging dramatically from a tree branch, sunlight filtering through a canopy of leaves and perhaps an iguana creeping under a fallen palm leaf.

Overlooked Wonder at Maria de la Cruz Cave
María de la Cruz Cave in Loíza is the first replenishment stop on the three-day, 375-mile La Vuelta annual cycling event, which takes place around Puerto Rico. Add in the fact that it’s a great spot for photos, and this easily bike accessible spot should be on every cyclist’s itinerary. This small cave is often overlooked, as it’s surrounded by a park with a playground and small amphitheater. But the high, arched entrance is truly picturesque, while the interior cave wall makes for a dramatic backdrop. The cave also boasts a fascinating history — archaeologists discovered evidence of very early inhabitants in the cave, from perhaps as far back as 4,000 BC. So take your time here, soak in the history and capture the moment for yourself.
Surf and Shadows on the Isabela Coast
Isabela boasts over three miles of beautiful beaches on its coastline, and they’re best explored by bike. Paseo Lineal is a scenic cycling trail, with the pathway beginning near Playa Jobos and ending at Villa Pesquera, with intermittent sections running adjacent to Route 466. The trail offers numerous scenic vistas from the seat of your bike, but the trail is best explored by taking occasional breaks to wander down the small sand tracks that lead to hidden locations with wonderful views of the coast. This is a great place to catch that dramatic ocean shot and, since the Isabela beaches face north, you can view both the sunrise and sunset here.
Mountain bikers will enjoy a trip to the south-western region of Puerto Rico, where they will find over 165 amazing cycling routes around La Parguera, Cabo Rojo and the Guánica Dry Forest. Las 100 de La Parguera is a famous cycling event taking place annually in this area, with over 60 miles of trails accessing white sand beaches, salt flats, wildlife reserves and the Cabo Rojo historical lighthouse as part of this great adventure (If you plan to come during the event, be sure to book your accommodation early!). Of course, Puerto Rico is such a popular destination for cyclists that, no matter when you visit, you will find incredibly scenic coastal trails and fellow cyclists of all skill levels.

Cycling gives you a perspective of Puerto Rico that many people don’t get. You can get up close and personal with nature when you’re on a bike, which allows you to see the beauty, history and culture at an eye-to-eye level. As a result, the scenes you’ll find and the photos you’ll take are all the more dramatic, rugged and unforgettable.

If you want to take your bike somewhere out of the ordinary, Puerto Rico might just be the place for you.