Ontario By Bike Ride – June & August 2021
This ride is now over
The detailed ride itinerary for this ride is available below for download. Enjoy great trail riding with a self-guided ride experience.
Niagara Circle Route South
When: Anytime. It’s a self-guided itinerary.
This two day long tour and primarily off-road ride along the Greater Niagara Circle Route. Discover the quieter side of Niagara and Niagara south, with this spectacular trail ride along the Niagara River Recreational Trail, the Friendship Trail and the Welland Canal Parkway Trail. Fully paved with only 24km of the 127km on roads, as well as flat easy riding conditions will make for a wonderful weekend getaway and cycling experience. Including a unique ferry jaunt over the Welland Canal, this looped route is well suited for all types of cyclists.
Total Distance: 130km
Experience Level and Ride Guide: Easy to moderate. Off-road paved trails system, level road crossings, with on-road riding limited to 24km of quiet country roads, connecting from the Welland Canal to the Niagara River Recreation Trail in Chippewa. Combined with limited elevation changes, the flat terrain makes this ride suitable for hybrid bikes, mountain bikes, and road bikes.
View Route: RidewithGPS (Note route updated in 2021 to avoid construction between Port Robinson and Chippawa. Alternate routing in 2018 itinerary).
Day 1: Thorold to Fort Erie – 71km
Start Time and Location: Thorold, ON, full details to be sent to riders in advance.
Starting in Thorold, just over 1.5 hours from downtown Toronto, and close to St Catharines, hop on the nearby trail to enjoy the first 10km heading south following the Welland Canal. Enjoying a leisurely pace following what is also known as the H2O Highway you may be lucky to ride alongside giant freighters connecting between the Great Lakes. Crossing the canal at the Allenburg Bridge, enjoy an easy countryside and quiet road ride following the Welland River to where it turbulently tumbles into the Niagara River in the small community of Chippewa will round out the morning, before a lunch picnic. (Note we will not be able to use the small Port Robinson Ferry in June as operation schedule and passenger safety protecol have not been confirmed.) The afternoon will take you south along the Niagara River Recreational Trail, a pleasant and peaceful ride to Fort Erie. The path winds under the impressive Peace Bridge and international border crossing, with views across the river and Lake Erie to Buffalo, New York. Let a visit to the Old Fort turn back time, with an opportunity to learn more about this strategic location and National Heritage Site, before arriving at our accommodation for the night, The Clarion Hotel Fort Erie.
Day 2: Fort Erie to Thorold – 58km
The morning ride will be a mellow 24km between Fort Erie and Port Colborne, cruising along The Friendship Trail, a lovely rail trail that follows the shores of Lake Erie. With trail side stop options at famed Erie beaches, including Crystal Beach and Sherkston, or quieter more secluded spots, cooling down with a dip in the lake is definitely an option. Pulling into Port Colborne for lunch, take time to explore the historic shopping district, promenade, and Lock 8, find out more about the town’s rich maritime heritage. After lunch, the route will follow the Welland Canal north, through the town of Welland and ending back at Thorold after a great day’s ride and weekend getaway.
Getting To/From Start:
Transportation options also include GO Transit with trains on weekends in June running between Toronto and Burlington. Transfer to GO bus service to St Catharines Fairview Mall (limit 2 bikes per bus). Ride south to Thorold, approximately 9km. Consult GO Transit schedules and regional cycling map to plan routes and times.
Arriving Early / Staying Late:
Consider an overnight option in Thorold at certified bicycle friendly accommodations:
The Inn at Lock Seven or Robinsong Bed & Breakfast or Morning Star Bed & Breakfast or Talwood Manor B&B
Or stay at other nearby Ontario By Bike Network accommodations in Niagara all listed HERE.
Additional Visitor Information:
Use below to find out more about ride area and plan an extra day or two to see more.
- Ontario By Bike Niagara – for more detailed information visit www.ontariobybike.ca/niagara
- Niagara Cycling Tourism Centre – www.niagaracyclingtourism.com
- Greater Niagara Circle Route Map – Download HERE
- Visit Niagara – www.visitniagaracanada.com
- Niagara’s South Coast – www.southcoasttourism.com
For more information contact:
Ontario By Bike
Phone: 416-827-2772 / 1-866-701-2774
Email: info (at) ontariobybike.ca
For information on all 2021 Ontario By Bike Rides, visit: