The geography and climate of Chengdu make this city especially attractive to bipedals who love bike pedals. What does that mean? No hills. You won't find yourself pumping up large monster mountains anywhere around the center of the city. Also, there's no snow or ice. The rain is a downer, but the Chinese know how to deal with this (see photo and China Cycling Tips).
LOHAS (Life of Health and Sustainability) Green Ways
To promote a healthy and sustainable lifestyle the city of Chengdu has been constructing bike paths all over the city. As of June 2013, many of the paths have already opened and the rest look like they will be finished soon.
These paths more or less follow the third and second ring roads. Also if you find a river in Chengdu then there is a good chance you'll find a peaceful bike trail next to it. At times these trails are full of pedestrians, but there are also long stretches without anyone.
Aside from these bike paths, biking along the city streets can be very enjoyable. There are so many bikes in Chengdu that drivers and pedestrians keep an eye out for them. Just join the herd and go with the flow.
Wenjiang Lü Dao
Many bike trails have the very creative name “Green Way” (Lü Dao 绿道). At times it is confusing which “Green Way” someone is referring to.
One of the most popular ones is in Wenjiang. Unfortunately, this trail isn't very special. With the development of the trails mentioned above these trails will probably be revamped and awesome someday, but as of right now don't let someone talk you into going out of your way to Wenjiang (but it is fine if you are in the area already).
Gaowei Bike Park
The Gaowei Bike Park is the perfect place for a bike to be a bike. The roads are smooth and the scenery is beautiful. The park also has little outdoor activities for the kids and places for picnics and camping. Although it is already big enough for a few hours of biking the park is being renovated a little and will eventually cover a very large area.
Didn't pack your bike? Of course, there is an area for bike rentals. A normal bike is 20 yuan for one hour and just 10 yuan more for every hour after that. A tandem bike is 30 yuan for one hour and 10 yuan for every hour after that. The deposit is 300 yuan. Unfortunately though you can't take the bike out of the park.
Gaowei Bike Park: Shisheng Street, Jinjiang District (高威自行车公园 锦江区石胜路)
Some of you are reading this article and wondering where the bike riding really is. Well, Chengdu is a great starting point for many Chengdu long distance bike rides.
If you are interested in renting a bike to take anywhere you should negotiate with one of the hundreds of small roadside bike repair people. Although their official business isn't bike rentals they are usually very flexible and will respond favorably to a good deal.
Recommended: Cycling with a Guide
China Highlights tours are flexible and great value. With a guide you can go where you want without wasting time getting lost, and find out more about Chengdu. Bike hire and an itinerary of your choice will all be sorted out for you. All you need to do is push the pedals and enjoy.
I updated this article on October 10, 2013
See all my travel articles