Okay, so the weather forecast for this weekend has been changing minute-by-minute. You looked at it yesterday and there was a little storm cloud hovering over Friday, Saturday and Sunday’s forecast, but when you looked today, the yellow sun icon was peaking out from behind the storm clouds.
Right now it looks like the weather for Bike Week will be mostly mild and sunny, if a little cloudy. We’ll be sure to keep you updated, since this upcoming weekend is one of the most crucial weather-wise of the year (second only to the following weekend’s Sunfest, for obvious reasons).
There’s nothing worse than rain pouring down and mud splashing up all over a freshly-scrubbed Harley, but on the other side of that, there’s nothing better than getting to ride a bike and explore Delmarva’s back roads over three warm, sunny, dry end-of-summer days. We’re hoping for the latter. And if you do get the chance to man a motorcycle (or sit in the sidecar) this week, you’re not going to want to limit yourself to the blocks that make up Coastal Highway. Here are just a few nearby day-tripping destinations to explore while you’re (hopefully!) soaking up the sun on a bike this weekend. (Click on the headings for a more extensive day-tripping guide to each location.)
At only about a 20 minute drive from Ocean City, Berlin is easily one of the most accessible and beautiful nearby towns to bike to. Peruse the antique shops downtown, grab a drink at the Wine Bar before dining in a 100-year-old theatre-turned-restaurant and be sure to take a look at the community mural that’s underway outside of the Visitor Center. Berlin is most famous for providing the backdrop to movies like Tuck Everlasting and Runaway Bride, but once you get to know the town you’ll see that there’s plenty of things that make it one of the Coolest Small Towns in America.
If you biked Route 50 to get to Ocean City, then you already drove right through Salisbury, the biggest city on Maryland’s Eastern Shore. Salisbury often attracts visitors from OC who want to do a little shopping at the Salisbury Mall or catch a movie at the Regal Cinemas, but the city also has a number of fun, local things to do, from visiting the animals at the free Salisbury Zoo to drinking a craft beer at Evo or Rubber Soul.
Pocomoke is a bit of a drive, about 45 minutes from Ocean City, but it’s well worth the trip–especially if you’re interested in any combination of nature and local history. The town sits on the banks of the Pocomoke River, which makes it the perfect place to go for a peaceful day of fishing or boating. Pocomoke is also home to the Delmarva Discovery Center, an interactive museum that’ll teach you all about the history and geography of the Eastern Shore and, as a bonus for animal lovers, includes an otter habitat.
The small town of Chincoteague on Chincoteague Island, on the Eastern Shore of Virginia just past the MD/VA border, is a great place for a bike ride. You can drive through the town’s quaint, bustling Main Street and stop at restaurants and local businesses at your leisure, or head straight to the beach on the Virginia portion of Assateague Island (and if you don’t mind walking up about 140 ft., be sure to check out the Assateague Light, too!).
If you’ve thought about exploring Fenwick Island, Dewey Beach, Rehoboth or Bethany, why not just drive through all of the hotspots on Delaware’s coast? It’s a straight shot down Coastal Highway from Ocean City north to Rehoboth, and each town along the Shore has its own unique beach, shopping and dining experience to offer.
For more information on Ocean City’s Bike Week, join the conversation with OC locals and tourists on our forum. (And yes, motorcycles can be noisy, but don’t let that scare you away from all the fun!)