Bike & Water Trails

Nowhere in the Capital region are attractions so easily accessible and physically connected by a bikeable and walkable scenic greenway.

Linking the Heritage Area’s concentration of cultural and historical resources is the Anacostia Tributary Trails System. Visitors may fly, drive, cycle or walk to the area, stay overnight at a comfortable hotel or campsite, use any of the numerous recreational facilities, visit museums, conduct research on a multitude of subjects, and view an art exhibit all without ever traveling more than a quick bike ride or walk from the Anacostia Tributary Trails System. Don’t miss our annual Rivers to Rockets Bike Rally each year.

The Anacostia Tributary Trail System, operated by the Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission, forms a backbone for the Heritage Area. Restaurants and attractions are positioned close to the trail — making the experience even richer.  If you are a rider from the DC metro area or from around the world, you will have a great time on the trails. For more information, call M-NCPPC at 301-699-2255.

Online Resources:

The newest section of the Anacostia Trail System was opened in October 2016 and was developed by the District of Columbia Department of Transportation, Anacostia Waterfront Initiative, and the National Park Service in DC and the Maryland Department of Transportation, MNCPPC, and other local partners in Maryland. 

An October 2012 press release said “This key link will provide 60 miles of trails in Maryland and in the District Columbia. Within the District, the segment is part of the planned 20-mile Anacostia Riverwalk Trail that will connect 16 waterfront neighborhoods to the Anacostia River, Southwest Waterfront, Nationals Park, Washington Navy Yard, RFK Stadium, National Arboretum, and other popular destinations. To date, more than 12 miles of the District’s trail are open and heavily used. This new portion of the trail will link to more than 40 miles of trails in Maryland that travel throughout the Anacostia River Tributary System and connect to numerous schools, businesses, libraries, museums, shopping centers and Metro and MARC transit stations.” Read more at:

More detailed information about the MNCPPC Anacostia Tributary Trail System including advisories, can be found on their primary website:

Additionally, the Rhode Island Avenue Trolley Trail between College Park and Hyattsville has been largely completed. A connection between Hyattsville Trolley Trail and the Northwest Branch is in design and a short stretch in Riverdale Park is in detour until 2020. The trail is jointly managed by the City of Hyattsville, City of College Park, and Town of Riverdale Park. Partners from Maryland Milestones, Hyattsville CDC, and the College Park City/University Partnership have come together to help market and push for users on this trail. For all the details visit:

Additional Resources

Bike Rental Options:

  • Bladensburg Waterfront Park (4601 Annapolis Road, Bladensburg, MD) (301-779-0371)
  • Rentals are $10/day, $5/day for under 18.  Under 18 must have an adult rider with them.

Local Bike Shops:

Bike Shops near the Heritage Area:

Water Trails

Drawing of Anacostia River

Anacostia Water Trail

“Discover the natural abundance of the Anacostia River…The Anacostia River corridor has lots of options for outdoor fun and the Anacostia Water Trail can help you find them…The trail covers a nine-mile stretch of the Anacostia River, running from Bladensburg, Maryland, through Washington, DC, to its juncture with the Potomac River about two miles south of Capitol Hill. Along this trail, the character of the river varies remarkably. Upstream you’ll find forests, wetlands, and wildlife that seem amazingly removed from the city. Downstream are hubs of riverfront recreation, with community parks, restaurants, and sporting events.”  — Anacostia Watershed Society

Find more about this amazing water trail at:

Patuxent Water Trail

“The Patuxent Water Trail offers visitors the opportunity to paddle the river, camp along its banks and visit its numerous parks, historic sites, and wildlife areas.” — Patuxent River Trail/Patuxent Riverkeeper 

For more about this water trail, visit: