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Checking for a Bike Trail? Here, the 8 Best Cycling Routes Near Manila

Thrilling challenges and the most breathtaking views await

Taking up cycling makes for a worthwhile hobby—that also allows you to make quick escapes from Manila on the weekends. Both new and established cyclists might be surprised by the biking options available, but in and around Manila, there are plenty of routes to consider. They cater to every level of experience, whether you’re still learning the ropes or consider yourself a skillful enough biker. Some are even suitable for kids still getting the hang of the basics on their first two-wheel rides. In the world of cycling, everyone is welcome. Is it time for you to get in on it, too?

A Growing Lifestyle Trend

Biking gained further popularity in the height of the COVID-19 pandemic as it became one of the more dependable modes of transport. As an efficient form of mobility, biking continues to address issues related to travel restrictions, social distancing, and the lack of proper ventilation in enclosed vehicles. Today, cycling is seen as more than just an economical way to get from one point to another. It’s considered a great form of exercise, too, and a wholesome hobby perfect for all ages. 

The best part about taking up this habit is that it requires minimal investment. Although bikes come in all shapes, sizes, and prices, this single piece of equipment is all you need to get out there. No special add-ons or exorbitant membership fees are needed to get you going. Plus, many of the cycling routes and mountain bike trails are free of charge. Some only require minimal entrance fees.

A cyclist using a smartphone while riding a bike on a forest trail
With several options to choose from, you’ll find a bike trail that suits your level of experience just outside Manila. Photo: Shutterstock

The Best Bike Trails Near Manila 

These are exciting times for anyone getting into biking as a sport or hobby. Bike trips are something you can look forward to if you want to avoid large urban crowds on weekends or simply want to get back into nature. Check out the spots ahead that are just outside Metro Manila. They all offer scenic views with a side of thrill.

1. Nuvali 

Vacationers headed to Tagaytay have likely passed through Nuvali in Santa Rosa, Laguna, or dropped by to check out the Nuvali restaurants and retail outlets. But did you know that this is also a worthy destination for bikers of all levels? The site caters to leisure bikers who can choose among Nuvali’s several paved bike trails. Even kids learning how to ride their bikes will enjoy time spent here. For the more adventurous, you can head off-road and take Nuvali’s interlinked routes filled with inclines, turns, and speed bumps.

2. Vermosa MX and Bike Trail 

Cavite, given its terrain, is definitely one that should not be left out of the list. About 40 kilometers south of Manila is the Vermosa bike trail: a haven for any mountain bike aficionado. This is where you should head if you want to display or practice biking tricks or any special skills through its challenging off-road track. It’s replete with elevated tracks, berms, rollers, loops, and jump sections, so don’t be surprised if you catch someone doing acrobatic stunts in this location.    

3. Angat Rainforest and Eco Park 

The Sierra Madre mountain range is made up of a vast expanse of flora and fauna. At its southern tip, cyclists can enjoy all this and more when they head to the Angat Rainforest and Eco Park. This Bulacan ecological site is a prime spot for bikers looking for a moderately challenging trail that still offers up calming scenery coupled with fresh air. Here, you get a mix of off-trail challenges as well as paved mountain routes shaded by tall trees. Along the way, you’ll also see Ipo Dam, Angat Dam, several bodies of water, and the nearby power plants.

4. Twin Lakes

Both newbies and advanced riders are guaranteed to have a grand time at Twin Lakes in Tagaytay City. Recognized as the country’s only vineyard resort township, Twin Lakes features a 2.5-kilometer bike loop with a majestic view of Taal Lake. The trail here is packed with different levels of inclines, curves, and descents—nothing an adventurous spirit can’t conquer. The cool, comfortable weather also makes it more worthwhile to get to the finish line.

A scenic view of the Taal Lake and Volcano with low clouds and orange sky
Catch a glimpse of the Taal Lake as you make your way through one of the country’s best bike trails. Photo: Shutterstock

5. Mt. Baytangan 

A smooth uphill bike trail leading to a breathtaking panoramic hilltop view: that’s what you can expect at Mt. Baytangan. Also called Camp Sinai, this Antipolo treasure rises over 455 meters above sea level. Sure, you’ll have to go through steep inclines, some narrow paths, and quite the lengthy distance, but the reward waiting for you at the end of the trail is more than worth the challenge. You can even grab a cup of coffee or enjoy breakfast in Baytangan while taking in the best views of the cities down below. Something to note: there’s a minimal entrance fee—but rest assured you’ll get your money’s worth as you pedal through this location. 

6. Laiban Dam 

Have you ever wondered how it feels to bike through a long, dark tunnel? That’s precisely the riveting experience at the Laiban-Daraitan Trail in Tanay, Rizal. The best time to head out to this site is way before the break of day when the fog is still low and the sun has yet to rise above the Sierra Madre mountains. (Pro tip: Bring your lighting gear to improve visibility.) This trail is not for the faint of heart, however, as cyclists will have to go through muddy paths and a steep dirt road before cross raging waters. If you ask us, though, this is precisely the kind of trail that adventurous mountain bikers will enjoy.    

7. Antenna Hill 

A gorgeous view of Laguna Lake and its surrounding cities await bikers at Antenna Hill in Binangonan, Rizal. Much like Timberland Heights’ The Wall, this bike trail features a steep uphill incline—a fun challenge for any beginner. Along the way, you’ll go through both paved and dirt roads, as well as curves and drops that are a welcome addition to the thrill of the ride. Make sure to also add the Angono Petroglyphs to your itinerary; get ready to marvel at stunning, centuries-old engravings on the rock walls.   

8. Timberland Heights

Dubbed as the Philippines’ Mountain Biking Capital, Timberland Heights is a 677-hectare leisure township in San Mateo, Rizal, boasting purpose-built bike trails. One of the best parts? The entrance is free. Here, what immediately welcomes bikers to the facility is a steep paved inclination called the Wall. Riders will then have to go through its sharp turns and ascents before heading off to any of the numerous trails that offer one of the most gorgeous views of the Manila skyline—with some pine trees on the side. Timberland Heights is a suitable choice for a trail mountain bike, gravel bike, or road bike. 

A group of Filipino cyclists on a smooth and paved bike trail
More and more Filipinos are getting into biking for leisure or sport. Photo: Shutterstock

Which of these sites are you excited to check out first? Whether you’re looking at an ultra-challenging, heart-racing route, or a relaxed and paved road to pedal through, these options offer a way to satisfy your adventurous spirit.

While you’re out, of course, stay connected with Globe 5G. It’s 20 times faster than LTE, ensuring you stay online, on the map, or always entertained no matter where you are.

So, what are you waiting for? Schedule that ride with your family or friends this weekend and make your way to a bike trail near you.

Art Matthew Fetalver

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