The Shining Sea Bikeway was named for the line in the song America The Beautiful, written by Falmouth native Katharine Lee Bates. It follows the original route of the New York, New Haven and Hartford Railroad that used to run from Buzzards Bay, through North and West Falmouth, around Woods Hole and into Falmouth Station.
In the early 1970’s the Town of Falmouth purchased the right of way, tore up the tracks and officially opened the Bikeway in 1975.
Parking & Directions
To reach the Shining Sea Bikeway, take Rt. 24 south to 1-495 south to the Bourne Bridge. From points north, take Rt. 3 south to the Sagamore Bridge rotary. Follow the signs to Buzzards Bay/Falmouth, then cross over the Bourne Bridge. From Bourne Bridge: travel Rt. 28 south to Falmouth. Fork right onto Locust Road. Entry to the bikeway parking area is a mile down on the right just past Pin Oak Way.
The Shining Sea Bikeway follows the coast from Falmouth to Woods Hole, winding along the Vineyard Sound shoreline. Ideal for casual and beginner cyclists, it was built on a former railroad right-of-way, and is level nearly the entire 3.3-mile distance.
Lined with familiar Cape Cod flower and tree species, it makes for a wonderful ride from Falmouth to scenic Woods Hole. This route avoids much of Falmouth’s notorious summer traffic by winding down along the beach, through marshes and through the Salt Pond Bird Sanctuary.
This is a frequently used area in-season, so be sure to respect the rights of others, especially inline skaters and runners.