8 Great Ideas for Your Sausalito Bike Ride
1. Routes: Whether you come across the Golden Gate Bridge from the south or take the bayside route from Mill Valley and Tiburon via the Mill Valley-Sausalito Multi-Use Path, mother nature and San Francisco will both be showing off for you all the way on your Sausalito bike ride.
2. Riding the Waves: Cross the Golden Gate and then after your Sausalito bike trip you can take the Sausalito Ferry back to San Francisco. Your bicycle rides with you on the boat! Reserve bike passes on the Ferry ahead of time for commute hour Ferry rides because they do fill up quickly. Bikers with tokens will be given priority to board the Ferry with their bikes.
3. You’ll be hungry: There are lots of cafes and restaurants that welcome Sausalito bike riders and have sidewalk seating, and where you can sit inside or outside and you’ll fit right in dressed for your ride.
4. Bike-focused improvements: There are bike lanes or medians on much of Bridgeway (though not in downtown Sausalito), and lots of places to park and lock your bike, especially in downtown Sausalito.
5. Enjoy the view: Beautiful bay-side benches where you can sit and have a snack or sandwich as a break during your Sausalito bike ride, especially along the Bridgeway Promenade (the location where I took the photo above).
6. A Secret Spot: If you want to see where the locals eat and shop, allow time to go to bike-friendly Caledonia Street. Just don’t tell the tour companies where it is!
7. Parking spots: Downtown bike parking is expanded from March through mid-October, and there’s lots of space to lock your bike in a rack in a spot where crowds of people are around to discourage bike thieves.
8. Sausalito bike riders welcome: Although traffic laws are enforced due to the crowds (hint: be sure to stop at red lights and yield to pedestrians), Sausalito Police and local events are bike-friendly. The SPD has offered joint training events with the Marin County Bicycle Coalition, and the Sausalito Art Festival features free bike valet parking. You’ll see officers patrolling downtown on their bikes.
4 Insider Tips
Local Bay Area riders know these basics of life in this region, but for visitors these suggestions will be useful:
1. Dress in layers and stay hydrated. Perceived temperatures can move 20 degrees up or down in minutes on the Golden Gate Bridge and in the portions of the Marin Headlands that face the Pacific Ocean, and the fog can arrive or disappear unexpectedly. Add in the wind chill effect from the speed of your bike and it’s easy to feel like a Popsicle or a corn dog if you don’t have the right layers of clothing.
2. Allow time. We constantly hear about people who intend to do Sausalito bike rides without stopping here, then wish they had time to take a break here and enjoy the food, art, views or shops.
3. Lock your bike. All the high-price bikes draw low-life thieves.
4. Know the dangerous choke points where cars or less experienced riders can veer unexpectedly and accidents happen. We cover most of these in our page on riding the Golden Gate Bridge to Sausalito. Assume that downtown Sausalito bike rides will encounter streets crowded with pedestrians (not to mention cars) and that patience will be required to get through that area.