Bike the Bridge: Biking across the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco

by Nov 7, 2021California, Travel Videos

Therese Iknoian Bike Golden Gate Bridge

Bike the Golden Gate Bridge with us as we pedal along San Francisco’s waterfront, biking across the Golden Gate Bridge and into Sausalito, and take the Blue & Gold ferry back.

Riding a bike across the Golden Gate Bridge is something all tourists should put on their bucket list. For one thing, it offers an up-close look at the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco, one of world’s most iconic landmarks and one of the longest suspension bridges anywhere.

You’ll also enjoy biking along the beautiful San Francisco Bay waterfront, through parts of the Presidio park and, once across the bridge, into the quaint seaside town of Sausalito. From start to finish, views of the city skyline, the Golden Gate Bridge, and Alcatraz are simply stunning, especially on a beautiful sunny day — although wisps of fog swirling around the bridge and San Francisco can be very magical too, albeit sometimes downright chilly!

The bridge may be just 1.7 miles across, but the ride can be eight to 12 (or more) miles, depending on how many side trips you take. Meaning the whimsical San Francisco Bay weather can change repeatedly. Remember to dress for cooler weather, even in the summer, with layers to put on or shed! The saying about “the coldest winter I ever spent was a summer in San Francisco” is more frequently true than not (often inaccurately attributed to Mark Twain). Remember, you also need to be prepared for sun, even in the fall. We were very surprised by our bright, cloudless day in late October with sun so intense we both got a bit sunburned.

You certainly have choices where you want to rent your bikes, unless you bring your own. We rented eBikes from Blazing Saddles in San Francisco for our adventure – although the business also has road bikes and hybrid bikes for rent too if you prefer. We were weighted down with camera gear and such for our trek so having that little power boost on the hills was a blessing.

When you are pedaling along the Golden Gate Bridge walkways, keep a sharp eye out for oncoming bikes. Typically, bike and pedestrian traffic is separated with bikes using one side of the bridge and pedestrians using the other (just watch for signs that will tell you which side of the bridge you need to be on). However, sometimes — as was the case when we rode across the bridge — bikes and pedestrians share the same path … meaning you need to be extra vigilant, especially with such beautiful and distracting views. Also, choose any stops for photos or enjoyment carefully so you aren’t in the way.

If you don’t plan to ride back, be sure to prepay for a return ticket from Sausalito on the Blue & Gold ferry which will drop you off at Pier 41 … right next to the popular Pier 39 shopping and restaurant destination. The ferry ride across the bay is just gorgeous, also well worth the trip, allowing different views of the San Francisco Bay and its landmarks. I’d also highly recommend you take the opportunity to lock up your bicycle, once back in San Francisco, and enjoy a drink, snack or meal at one of the family-run restaurants on Pier 39 before returning to the bike shop (check closing hours, of course). That’s a perfect way to cap off a memorable day of adventure.

To get a taste for what to expect on your bike the bridge adventure, watch our 5-minute video below. And read our story “A photo guide to biking the Golden Gate Bridge” to help you get ready. Then, we bet you’ll be itching to book your bike adventure on your next California road trip.

Disclosure: We were hosted for our bike rental by Blazing Saddles and our ferry ride by Blue & Gold. Any reviews, mentions and opinions here are our own, and are not approved, provided, or otherwise endorsed or influenced by Blazing Saddles, Blue & Gold, or any of the attractions mentioned.

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Don't Let The Sun Set On You!

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