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Comprehensive Guide to Bike Rentals in New Orleans

New Orleans is like nowhere else on the planet. Its unique French & Spanish-inspired architecture, combined with an exceptional nightlife scene, makes it a wonderful destination for both revelers and culture buffs.  

While the Big Easy is a fairly small city, it’s still big enough that getting around requires some planning. Whether you decide to stay in Lower Garden District’s gorgeous townhouses, one of Uptown’s charming historic rentals, or the bohemian Bywater, you’ll need more than your own two feet to explore the city comfortably. 

So, what is the best way to do it? On a bike, of course!

Why Should You Explore New Orleans on a Bike?

If you’ve considered renting a car for your New Orleans adventure, think twice! Driving in the narrow, one-way streets and finding parking can be challenging even for the locals. Parking downtown can be very expensive too. So, unless you’re planning to head outside the city, it’s best to stick with other, less stressful options, like bike rentals. In fact, New Orleans’ flat, confined infrastructure makes it easy to navigate even for total newbies.

Furthermore, New Orleans has hundreds of excellent bike routes and waterfront paths that go through the city’s most awe-inspiring spots. If you’re looking to get the real NOLA experience, hopping on a bike is the best option! Not only will you get to take in all the beautiful sights, but you’ll also do it in an economically and environmentally friendly way. What else could you wish for?

The Best Bike Rentals in New Orleans

Cycling through New Orleans is a true pleasure! If you choose to explore the city on a bike, there are several rental companies available. You can even join a biking tour – an excellent option for those visiting New Orleans for a short time.

The easiest and most convenient option, however, is to join the city’s bike-share program, Blue Bikes. All around New Orleans, you’ll find hundreds of their pedal-assist e-bikes that will allow you to roll with confidence wherever you go. In fact, Blue Bikes has stations in the majority of New Orleans’ most popular neighborhoods, including the French Quarter, the Garden District, and Bayou St. John, where you can access City Park.

How Do Blue Bikes Work?

If you’ve never used a bike-sharing service before, don’t worry! It’s surprisingly easy. Simply download the Blue Bikes NOLA app, choose a plan, and sign up for a membership. After that, you can look at the map to find a bike closest to you. 

Once you’re next to your chosen bike, you’ll have to scan a QR code with your phone, remove the lock tether, and voilà, you’re ready to explore!

How Much Does Renting a Blue Bike Cost?

As we mentioned before, renting a bike for your NOLA adventure is one of the most affordable ways to get around. You can either choose to pay as you go ($0.15 per minute and $1 to unlock) or get a monthly subscription for $25 (in this case, you get up to 60 minutes of free ride time per day; however, you’ll have to pay $0.15/minute after the initial time has passed).

What About Other Bike Rental Options?

If you prefer to rent one bike for the entirety of your stay, these are the top rental companies in New Orleans:

The Best Bike Trails to Discover in New Orleans

The Big Easy boasts numerous incredible bike trails and paths. It would be a crime not to include them in your travel itinerary! Here are two of our favorites:

The Lafitte Greenway


Connecting City Park to the French Quarter and Downtown, the Lafitte Greenway is a 2.6-mile (and growing!) bike path that will take you through the best parts of Mid-City via smooth trails and safe crossings. There are parks, playgrounds, and even public workout spaces on the trail. There are even a half-dozen Blue Bike Stations adjacent to the Greenway.

​​Esplanade Avenue & City Park

Begin your journey in the French Quarter and make your way along Esplanade Avenue. As you cycle, admire the grand mansions, ancient oak trees, and charming cafes lining the route. Esplanade Avenue leads you directly to City Park, and from there, you have the option to cycle to the southern edge of Lake Pontchartrain.


Final Thoughts

With its flat terrain and stunning sights, the Crescent City has a strong culture of biking. If you wish to discover New Orleans’ beauty at your own pace, there’s truly no better way to move around than on a bike.

But don’t just take our word for it. If you’d like to experience NOLA’s magic for yourself, book a stay at one of our fantastic vacation rentals in New Orleans. Our friendly hosts will gladly answer any questions you might have about renting a bike during your vacation.

FAQ

  1. What safety precautions should cyclists take when cycling around New Orleans?

Make sure to always use bicycle lights, helmets, and reflectors – this is important for both visibility and protection. Likewise, cyclists should ride in bike lanes or on bike paths when possible and on the right side of the road, avoiding sidewalks, when bike lanes or paths aren’t available.

  1. Are there bike routes suitable for children or less confident cyclists, and how does one find them?

New Orleans offers a variety of bike paths and trails suitable for all skill levels. For example, routes like the Lafitte Greenway provide a low-stress ride on an off-street shared path, ideal for families and less confident cyclists.

  1. Where can you securely park bikes in New Orleans?

The Blue Bikes program has parking stations all across the city (have a look at the map here). If you decide to rent a bike from a different company, make sure to park in designated bike racks and secure your bike with a sturdy lock.


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