Biking and Walking in Virginia


Scotland Ferry Law Enforcement United bicycle rideThe Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) maintains and operates three ferries that allow bicycles and pedestrians. The Jamestown-Scotland Ferry provides an alternative James River crossing to nearby bridges where by bicycles are prohibited due to unsafe conditions. The other two ferries operated by VDOT are located at Merry Point and Sunny Bank on Virginia's Northern Neck.

While the Jamestown-Scotland Ferry can accommodate a large group of bicyclists, please be advised that the Merry Point and Sunny Bank ferries may carry a maximum of six people per crossing because of space limitations. Although we are unable to take reservations, a roundtrip on these ferries is less than 10 minutes.

Bicyclists and pedestrians may also board Hampton Roads Transit's Elizabeth River Ferry to cross between the Cities of Norfolk and Portsmouth, White’s Ferry, a privately operated service that connects Loudoun County with the Chesapeake & Ohio Canal Trail near Poolesville, Maryland, and the Hatton Ferry, a free, donation-based service in Central Virginia between Albemarle and Buckingham Counties.

Amtrak and Virginia Railway Express

Depending on your location, there are many different ways to travel by train with your bike. For detailed information about the maximum dimensions of folding bicycles, baggage fees, and reservation requirements you may visit Amtrak’s Bring Your Bicycle Onboard website or download the Bicycling in Virginia Train Service Guide (pdf).

  • Designated spaces within the body of the train car
  • Folding bikes under the dimensions of 34" x 15" x 48"
  • Full-size bicycles may be transported in bicycle racks located in the baggage car at stations served by the Carolinian, Crescent, Northeast Regional and Silver Service/Palmetto routes
  • Bicycles may be checked on Amtrak between all locations where checked baggage is offered

Local Public Transportation

Bicycle-friendly transit service provides commuters and other travelers with increased flexibility by expanding the distance one can travel using public transportation.  VDOT's Northern Virginia District provides bicycle lockers at Park-and-Ride lots and some Metro stations. Other ways bicycles and public transportation are integrated include:

  • Metro and Fairfax County bicycle lockers
  • Bus-mounted bicycle racks
  • Capital Bikeshare Stations in Arlington, Fairfax, and Alexandria and UBike in Charlottesville
  • Bicycle parking facilities located at park-and-ride lots and near work and non-work attractions

The following links include information on how to use bus-mounted bicycle racks and the maximum size dimensions and time limitations when bicycles are allowed. While the following service providers are equipped to carry bicycles, those that are not mentioned may still offer various forms of accommodation. 

Page last modified: Dec. 27, 2017