About
the Century
People on bicycles
It's a Ride of Passage

Founded in 1990 as a spirited act of activism to stake the cyclist’s claim to NYC streets, the New York City Century Bike Tour has become one of the world’s most unique tours. Boasting the nation’s only all-urban century route as well as distances accessible to riders of all skill levels, the NYC Century showcases the diversity of New York’s neighborhoods from a new perspective: the back of your bike.

We’ve grown a lot since the first peloton of 200 passionate bike commuters took a stand for better biking infrastructure. From just a handful of useable bike lanes in the 90s to over 1,200 miles of cycling infrastructure in 2018, New York has never been better for people on bikes.

Join the 6,000 other cyclists who come together every fall to bike for better biking.

Choose Your Challenge
Every route is carefully designed with your enjoyment and safety in mind. Experienced course marshals and bike mechanics support riders and extensive rest stops keep you energized and hydrated over the course of the tour.
15
miles
Starting in Prospect Park, the 15-mile route for the NYC Century Bike Tour is the only route that is led by an NYPD escort. Riders will cross into Manhattan and travel up into Central Park for the Finish Festival. Registration for this route is limited to 800 riders, so make sure to get your tickets early to ensure entry.
35
miles
This route takes takes you to Brooklyn’s crown jewel, the newly car-free Prospect Park. All riders on this course then continue through north Brooklyn and the Queens waterfront to Astoria Park. Then, the route traverses the Triborough Bridge to Manhattan's Upper East Side before ending at the Central Park Finish Festival.
55
miles
See the most iconic sights of the Brooklyn shore. After Prospect Park, 55-milers head south along Shore Parkway to Brighton Beach and Coney Island. See Marine Park, Brooklyn’s largest park, before looping back through central Brooklyn to join up with the 35-mile route through the Queens waterfront and back to Central Park.
75
miles
The 75-mile route hits all the classic spots on the 55-mile route, then extends out to the beaches of Jacob Riis Park and the Rockaways before rolling through the heart of Queens and verdant Forest Park. Ride on miles of beautiful parkway and even complete a lap at the Kissena Velodrome before looping back into Manhattan.
100
miles
For those looking for an incredibly beautiful challenge, the Century has you covered. See the whole city, from Brooklyn’s shoreline, to Queens’ greenways, to the Bronx’s Little Italy, to Manhattan’s Harlem River Greenway (and so much more!) before celebrating your momentous achievement at the Central Park Finish Festival.
Not sure which route to ride?
Unless you’re riding the 15-mils police-escorted route, riders may change their route at any point without penalty. Just make sure to have the appropriate cue sheet and/or Ride with GPS file when you head out.
Rent a Bike

Don't have a bike? Worried that the one you have is not up to snuff? Bike Rent NYC has you covered with their Century-ready Trek bicycles. Just add a bike rental to your checkout when you register and you'll be tackling the hills, twists, and turns of the NYC Century like a pro.

Starting Locations

TransAlt is happy to offer two NYC Century Bike Tour Start options again this year. Select the starting point that’s most convenient for you: Central Park or Prospect Park!

Starting Location Map Starting Location Map


Please note: There will only be one Finish Festival for the NYC Century, located in Central Park. For Prospect Park starters, you must pick up your complimentary t-shirt and water bottle at Central Park. You can still continue with the route and complete your mileage after your pickup.

Rest Stops

The NYC Century features fully-stocked rest stops at NYC’s most beautiful parks. The average distance between rest stops is 15 miles.

15 miles: Union Square

35 miles: Grand Army Plaza, Astoria Park

55 miles: Grand Army Plaza, Marine Park, Astoria Park

75 miles: Grand Army Plaza, Marine Park, Forest Park, Astoria Park

100 miles: Grand Army Plaza, Marine Park, Forest Park, Little Bay Park, Astoria Park, Van Cortlandt Park

SAG

There will be limited SAG (support and gear) on the route. The SAG vehicle will pick up riders and return them only to the finish area. Riders who cannot complete the ride but are located within walking distance to a subway stop will be asked to use the train.

Finish Festival

Celebrate, re-fuel, and relax after the ride with treats, giveaways, a variety of food options, and more at the NYC Century Bike Tour Finish Festival in Central Park. Invite your friends and family for a fun outing with NYC’s most dedicated cyclists and street infrastructure advocates!

NYC Century Festival Location*

Central Park, 110th Street & Malcolm X Blvd

Note: There will only be one Finish Festival for the NYC Century, located in Central Park. For Prospect Park starters, you must pick up your complimentary t-shirt and water bottle at Central Park.

trans alt logo
About TransAlt

With more than 140,000 active supporters and committees of activists working locally in every borough, Transportation Alternatives works to reclaim New York City streets for biking, walking, and public transit.

Since its founding in 1973, TransAlt has paved the way for remarkable changes in New York City’s transportation infrastructure and culture, including the extraordinary growth of commuting by bicycle and the launch of Citi Bike. Through consistent and focused advocacy, TransAlt has advanced “complete street” redesigns with protected bike lanes, dedicated bus lanes and public plazas, and has also worked for more equitable Vision Zero traffic enforcement across the five boroughs, including speed safety cameras to protect children at every school.

Your participation in The NYC Century Bike Tour helps to sustain our advocacy so we can continue to reclaim our streets.

FAQ
Can kids participate in the NYC Century?

Riders under 18 years of age are welcome to join and must be accompanied by a guardian. New York State law requires helmets for children 14 and under when they are operators or passengers on bicycles and strongly encouraged for riders of all ages. State law requires children ages one to five to wear an approved helmet and be carried in a properly affixed child carrier where they can ride as a passenger, but not by themselves. This year’s 15-mile route is especially kid-friendly, led by a police escort. For all routes, riders of all ages should be confident enough to ride alongside traffic.

Do I need to wear a helmet to ride in the 2018 NYC Century?

While it is not mandatory, we encourage you to wear a helmet every day and while riding your bike in the New York City Century. 

Do I have to wear my bib and bike plate?

Yes, you must display the bib for the duration of the NYC Century Bike Tour. Your bib should be attached to the front of your jersey or shirt using safety pins. Your bike plate number should be attached to the front of your handlebars using the zip ties provided with your bib package. 

How do I know if I am registered for the 2018 NYC Century?

All riders receive a confirmation email after they complete registration online. If you have not received one, please email events@transalt.org to confirm your participation.

I'm planning to ride on a tandem bike with a friend; do I need to register separately?

Yes. All individuals on the course are required to register for the tour.

What forms of identification are valid for me to pick up my bib pre-event?

Residents of the United States and Puerto Rico must show city, state, or federal government-issued photo ID, such as a driver’s license, DMV photo ID, or IDNYC. Non-US residents, including Canadian residents, are required to show a valid passport. A student ID with photograph will also be accepted. 

Where can I pick up my bib pre-event?

From August 27 - September 8 registered riders can pick up their bibs at any Bicycle Habit location.
Bicycle Habitat Chelsea: 228 7th Ave, New York, NY 10011
Bicycle Habitat SoHo: 250 Lafayette Street, New York, NY 10012 
Bicycle Habitat Brooklyn, Park Slope: 476 5th Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11215
Bicycle Habitat Brooklyn, Prospect Heights: 560 Vanderbilt Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11238

Transportation Alternatives Office - 111 John Street, Suite 260, New York, NY 10038
On Tuesday August 28 or Tuesday September 4 from 5-7pm, you can pick up your bib at the Transportation Alternatives Office. You must RSVP in order to pick up your bibs during this time.

When does pre-registration close?

Registration will close on Thursday, September 6th at 11:30pm. New riders will be able to register on-site and will be subject to day-of rates. Rider registration will be capped at 7,000 riders; while rare, the NYC Century Bike Tour has sold out in the past.

Can I ride a different route than the one I registered for?

Yes. If you decide you would like to ride a different route, YOU CAN! It is not necessary to inform us in advance of your desired change. Please check the "Routes" section of this page to determine the start time for your desired route.

I ordered a jersey during registration. Where can I pick it up?

You can pick up your jersey at the gift shop tent at Central Park either before the ride or at the finish festival.

Where can I pickup my t-shirt and water bottle?

You can pick up your t-shirt and water bottle at the dedicated T-Shirt and Water Bottle Tent at the end of the ride at the finish festival in Central Park. If you are unable to attend the finish festival, you will be able to pick up your t-shirt and water bottle at the Transportation Alternative offices after September 24th. Email info@transalt.org with 24-hour notice of when you would like to pick them up.

Are there any bag restrictions?

No. Feel free to use backpacks, hydration packs, panniers, baskets, and any other bag suitable for cycling. There is no bag check at Central Park, Prospect Park, or at any Rest Stops along the route.

Is bike repair offered along the tour route?

Rider-assist marshals will be able to offer some assistance for minor repairs while on the route. We strongly recommend that you bring an extra bike tube and check your bike before the tour. Not sure how to get your bike ready for the tour? Not sure how to get your bike ready for the tour? Watch a tutorial or visit our friends at Bicycle Habitat for a pre-ride tune-up.

Can I wear headphones/earbuds while I ride?

NYC law says that you may wear one (1) earbud, but keeping your ears clear is a much safer choice.

What should I bring?

Helmet, photo ID, water bottle(s), cash, Metrocard, sunscreen, spare bike tube, and patch kit.

Are there bike rentals available?

Yes. You are in luck! Select “Bike Rental” when you register and follow the prompts.  

What app should I use to track my ride during the tour?

Ride with GPS! Visit ridewithgps.com to get a detailed, turn-by-turn map of the tour. You can even download the route to your Garmin or smartphone.  Registered riders will receive a link to the route on/around September 4, 2018.

How fast will I need to ride to complete the tour?

The Finish Line Festival at Central Park closes at 6:00 pm and we ask all cyclists including the 100 milers to complete their ride by 5 pm sharp! 35-milers should be able to finish the tour in time without worrying about speed. 55- and 75-milers should be riding at least 10 mph. 100-milers should be traveling at least 12 mph. Please note: The amount of time you spend at a rest area is important! Be sure to consult the rest area closing times on your cue sheet and listen to announcements from the rest area staff.

What kinds of snacks will there be at the rest stops?

Each rest stop will have beverages and snacks to fuel your ride. We’ll have protein-packed treats at select rest stops. Please pack a lunch or bring some cash if you think you'll require more food or have food allergies. Please note: We do not provide bottled water. You must bring your own water bottle, which you can fill up at any of our rest stops, including our Central Park and Prospect Park sites.

Will there be food at the Finish in Central Park?

Yes! There will be food trucks available for you to purchase lunch, beverages and snacks.

How long do I have to ride before I reach a rest stop?

The average distance between rest stops is 15 miles. 

Will there be SAG (Support And Gear) vehicles along the route?

Yes. There will be limited SAG (Support And Gear) vehicles as well as bike marshals on the ride to assist riders with minor repairs. If you need to reach the SAG vehicles on the date of the tour, please contact 646-873-6008. If a rider cannot complete the ride, they should locate the nearest subway station. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911.

Are there ride marshals on the route?

Yes – they are identifiable by their orange and yellow vests. They can assist you with minor bike issues or repairs. However, please be aware that ride marshals do not always carry extra supplies, so make sure you bring extra tubes or any other supplies you think you may need.

When and where can I start?

Central Park Start: Central Park N and Malcolm X Blvd

  • Check-In: 100-milers: 6:00 am to 7:00 am
  • Check-In: 75-, 55-, 35- milers: 6:00 am to 8:00 am
    • First Wave Start at 6:30 am for 100-, 75-, 55-, 35-milers
    • By 7:00 am: 100-milers must depart from Central Park 
    • By 8:00 am: All 75, 55, 35-milers must depart from Central Park  

Prospect Park Start at Park Circle 

  • Check-In: 100-milers: 7:00 am to 8:00 am
  • Check-In: 75-, 55-, 35- milers: 7:00 am to 9:00 am 
    • First Wave Starts at 7:30 am for 100-, 75-, 55-, 35-milers 
    • By 8:00 am: 100-milers must depart from Prospect Park 
    • By 9:00 am: All 75-, 55-, 35-milers must depart from Prospect Park  

Prospect Park Start at Park Circle (15 Mile Escorted Ride by NYPD)

  • Check-In: 15-miler: 8:00 am to 9:00 am
    • 15-miler Start at 9:00 am
Where is the NYC Century Finish?

Central Park at Malcolm X Blvd and Central Park North (inside of Central Park). There is no finish festival at Prospect Park.

 

Will there be bathrooms along the route?

Yes! Each rest stop will have bathrooms as will our locations at Central Park and Prospect Park.

Is the NYC Century a charity event?

Yes! The NYC Century is produced by and benefits Transportation Alternatives, a 501(c)3 non-profit organization. We work on making the streets of NYC safer and more fun for all New Yorkers by advocating for protected bike lanes, dynamic pedestrian plazas, and more. Read more about us!

 

How many people will ride the NYC Century?

We have historically had around 6,000 participants ride in the NYC Century each year. Maximum capacity for the tour is 7,000 riders.

Will roads be closed to motor vehicles for the bike tour?

All routes are open road. You should be prepared to ride confidently alongside traffic and obey all traffic and bicycle laws. The 15-mile route will not be closed to motor vehicles but will be led via escort (front and back) by the NYPD. 

When is the next TransAlt bike tour?

Glad you asked! We host bike rides throughout the year, ranging from small social rides to larger organized tours. Once you sign up for this ride you'll automatically receive alerts whenever registration launches for our other rides. Our next large, organized ride will be the Tour de Staten Island in the Spring of 2019 — keep an eye out for more details on that soon. TransAlt members receive an exclusive discounted entry for the Tour de Staten Island - join today!

What is your cancellation policy?

All registration sales are final and non-transferable. In the unlikely case the tour is canceled, you may claim your registration fee as a tax-deductible donation to Transportation Alternatives, a 501(c)3 non-profit organization. All funds raised through TransAlt bike tours support our life-saving work for safe streets in New York City.

Is there a rain date for the NYC Century?

There is no rain date; we ride rain or shine! In case of inclement weather, Transportation Alternatives reserves the right to cancel/alter/modify any of the routes for safety concerns. If there is a dangerous weather situation imminent, registrants will be emailed using the email address provided at registration regarding any pre-event changes to the tour.

Where can I park my car?

Transportation Alternatives is dedicated to reclaiming NYC streets from automobiles. We encourage participants to bike or use public transportation to get to our start sites. We do not provide a designated area for parking.

My question wasn’t answered in the above. How can I contact you?

Email matthew.cox@transalt.org for information on becoming a Sponsor or Festival Partner.
 
Media
Email press@transalt.org with your name, phone number, email address and the nature of your inquiry. 
 
Volunteer (non-cycling or Bike Marshal)
Email volunteer@transalt.org with your questions. 
 
Other Questions for TransAlt?
Email us at events@transalt.org with your Century questions or to find out how you can help advocate for safer streets in New York City! Tell us what you’d like to change and we’ll tell you how to get started.