Whether you’re planning a quiet scenic nature ride, or a pleasant ride through the woods to a destination, Millennium Park and the Kent Trails are perfect routes to consider for your excursion.

Millennium Park and the Kent Trails connected to it can provide a number of biking routes in close proximity to downtown, plus these routes are great for families and beginning bikers.

Take a look at some great biking routes that begin at Millennium Park:

First Things First...

Before you start your cycling excursion, you should know the rules of the road.

If you’d like some more guidance on biking safety, check out the Greater Grand Rapids Bicycle Coalition, My City Bikes, and Driving Change for safety instruction

Millennium Park runs through Grand Rapids and the nearby communities of Walker, Grandville, and Wyoming.

Photo Credit: Experience Grand Rapids

About the Park

Millennium Park is located just to the southwest of downtown Grand Rapids. It includes nearly 20 miles of trails in wooded, rolling terrain along six-miles of the Grand River. At the center of the park is the Recreation Core, with a six-acre beach on a man-made lake as well as access to the trails. On a hot day, a dip in the lake can be the perfect finish to a bike ride.

Across the road from the Recreation Core is The Meadows, with a pavilion, amphitheatre, and more access to the nearby trails. Either location makes a great spot to start your bike ride.

The miles of trails throughout Millennium Park are mostly paved, with just a few miles of gravel and dirt connectors throughout the middle of the park. The trails are gently hilly on the north side of the park, with flatter trails along the river and around the lakes, making this a great bike ride for family and beginner bikers.

You can download the My City Bikes App or use any of the maps posted along the trails to navigate throughout your excursion Millennium Park.

Access to Millennium Park from Grand Rapids’ West Side

You can access Millennium Park from the Butterworth Trailhead, a popular spot for many locals to start runs and rides into the park due to its three-miles proximity to the middle of the park. This three-in-a-half mile paved loop over the old Grand Rapids landfill is often used by locals to walk their dogs, or to enjoy a quiet family walk.

Just north along Butterworth is the John Ball Park and John Ball Zoo. The zoo is home to more than 1,800 animals and many kid-friendly attractions.

There’s easy access as well from John Ball Park along Fulton Street for a pre-ride coffee at The Bitter End Coffee House and a post-ride frozen yogurt treat at Spoonlickers.

If you’re looking for a bite to eat after or before your bike route, visit Grain Sandwich Shop or The Tip Top Deluxe Bar & Grill. Both locations are on Butterworth, just north of the zoo and Butterworth Trailhead.

Right next to Millennium Park lies Johnson Park, which connects bikers to nearby towns such as Grandville.

Photo Credit: Experience Grand Rapids

Access to Millennium Park from the Southwest

If you’re heading to Millennium Park from the southwest, first visit nearby Johnson Park.

Johnson Park is connected by trails to Millennium Park, and the trip from park-to-park is two miles in length. Johnson Park features a pedestrian and bicycle only scenic trail, playgrounds and pavilions, a disc golf park, and Grand River access for boats.  

Johnson Park is also nearby downtown Grandville, which offers multiple amenities for families and adults. The trip from Johnson Park to downtown Grandville is almost three miles in length.

To visit downtown Grandville via Johnson Park, follow the below instructions:

  • Enjoy the beautiful scenery of the Grand River from Johnson Park, then cross the street onto Wilson Avenue, where you’ll approach Indian Mounds Drive, a one-way road along the river.

  • Continue on Indian Mounds Drive. You’ll quickly reach the Wilson Bridge, which connects to two Kent Trails trailheads in Grandville.

  • At the trailheads, you’ll find easy access to downtown Grandville, which offers plenty of shops and restaurants. Visit Osgood Brewing for a delicious meal and craft beer, or visit the Royal Dutch Bakery for a mid-ride treat.  

The bike ride which begins at Millennium Park, then goes to Johnson Park, and concludes at downtown Grandville is five miles in length, and consists of almost all Kent Trails paths, making this a safe biking route for bikers of all experience levels.

Access to Millennium Park from the South

Easy access to Millennium Park and the Kent Trails is available from the south as well. The Kent Trails feature a trailhead at the north end of Ivanrest Ave. This trail crosses safely under I-196 to access Indian Mounds Drive. A shady ride along the river will provide access to the park at the Kent Trails Grand River Bridge to the east or at Wilson Ave to the west.

South of the trailhead, on Prairie, east of Ivanrest, near Byron Center Ave, the paved trail picks up again and continues, with only one brief interruption, all the way to Byron Center, about 12 miles in total, from the center of Millennium Park.

Millennium Park offers plenty of bike paths for safe bike riding.

Photo Credit: Experience Grand Rapids

Access to Millennium Park from the North

The Fred Meijer Standale Trail heads north from Millennium Park for six miles, starting at Maynard and Butterworth, heading up through Standale, eventually right to the Walker Ice & Fitness Center and Walker Branch of the Kent District Library.

Along the way, an ice cream treat can be found at The Ice Cream Garage one block west of the trail on Lake Michigan Drive, and one further block west, more adult treats can be found at DeHops Brewing Company and Cafe.

What’s your favorite biking excursion in, or around Millennium Park? Let us know in the comments!

Download the My City Bikes App and plan an adventure today.