Outside of my professional endeavors of educating young minds about corrosion and engineering, I enjoy traveling and cycling around the cities and counties I travel to. However, when it comes to domestic travel, my wife and I enjoy participating in long distance bike rides.

We’ve cycled across Iowa in the RAGBRAI, across Missouri’s Katy Trail, and all around southern Louisiana. Although we’ve done quite a bit of long-distance cycling, we enjoy riding around bicycle-friendly towns as well. I’m fortunate enough to live in Cape Canaveral, where outdoor activities are welcomed by the community, but there are a few other cities I’d like to ride around as well. Here are a few bicycle-friendly towns I’d like to visit to experience the action and adventure of riding in an unfamiliar town.

Chicago, Illinois

While he was running for election, Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel announced he would build 50 miles of bikeways if he were elected. It was a huge promise, but once elected, Emanuel doubled his promise to build 100 miles of bikeways in the city.

The bikeways, which are physically separated from motor vehicles using buffered and protected bike lanes, will be finished by this spring. In addition, the city has been renovating the bike lanes they already have by adding in concrete curbs. Both these additions will make Chicago the first major U.S. city with a safe, downtown network of protected bike lanes.

“Our goal has been to make it easier and safer for everyone – no matter their age or ability – to get around on a bicycle, whether it’s for work, school, exercise or fun,” Emanuel said.

Copenhagen, Denmark

This European city is well-known for its cycling culture. In fact, more than 50 percent of residents ride their bicycles to work every day! And with over 242 miles of designated bike lanes, it’s no wonder that Copenhagen has been deemed the first Bike City in the World!

Copenhagen continuously invests in new bicycle infrastructure for the city. One of their developments includes the country’s first Cycle Superhighway. This bicycle-only pathway gives cyclists a safe ride all the way from Albertslund, a suburban town about 13 miles outside the city, to the center of Copenhagen. In addition, the famous Cykelslangen (“cycle snake”) elevated bike ramp over the harbor has helped ease traffic congestion and has fascinated tourists and locals alike.

Boulder, Colorado

For cyclists seeking adventure, Boulder has the best mountain bike trails in the country. With designated and protected bike lanes around the city, hundreds of miles of bike paths, easy access to dozens of breathtaking mountain biking trails, and over 300 days of sunshine a year, Boulder is a mountain biker’s paradise.  

What bicycle-friendly cities have you visited?

Robert “Bob” Heidersbach is the author of Metallurgy and Corrosion Control in Oil and Gas Production. The book is based on Robert’s experience teaching new engineers that need to understand metallurgy and corrosion control in the oil industry. He is currently in the process of rewriting and updating the publication, and welcomes any suggestions about how to improve the book. In his spare time, Bob enjoys kayaking, biking and traveling.