Cycle the San Mateo shoreline with Coastal Elegance bike tours

If you like a little "work" in your "play," then a bicycle tour of the rugged San Mateo coast may be your notion of an ideal weekend getaway.

Coastal Elegance, a Half Moon Bay-based tour company, offers guided excursions along the seaside, including two that include a visit to our Point Montara Lighthouse Hostel.

Tours use USA-made Cannondale Bicycles, which are 24-speed with fork and post suspension, and equipped with bike bags and soft cushion seats. Support vehicle and mobile communications are provided on all tours.

The Beach Lighthouse Eco-Cycling Tour is a round-trip tour which starts at Pillar Point Harbor and takes riders along the salty seaside bluffs to the historic Point Montara Lighthouse. Riders will take in the tranquil surroundings while scouting for birds and wildlife, and discuss their findings with their guide.

During the break, guests enjoy snacks -- fresh fruit, chocolate, Odwalla bars, and water -- while perusing photos of the colorful marine wildlife in Half Moon Bay's reefs.

This "easy" tour is for individuals who are fit, as the terrain has dirt paths and hills, and is available either in a two- or four-hour trip. Tours begin at $65 per person for two hours, and $110 for four hours, and include bicycle, helmet, saddlebags, and snacks.

Groups rates are also available, and it is possible to make arrangements to start and end the tour at the hostel (subject to availability). 

For those looking for a more inclusive weekend getaway, Coastal Elegance offers the Redwood and Lighthouse Eco-Cycling Package, a two-day excursion combining two four- to six-hour day trips with two overnight stays in Pescadero or Half Moon Bay.

Each day covers 25-30 miles, beginning about 9 a.m. and concluding around 2-3 p.m. Light breakfast and lunch are provided.

This "easy-to-moderate" tour begins in historic Pescadero, and takes visitors through the Pescadero Valley, beaches, and redwoods groves. The second day starts at the Half Moon Bay Coastal Trail and includes the Point Montara Lighthouse, Pillar Point Harbor, Mavericks Point -- home of the world famous surf break -- and Mount Montara. Lunch is served midway through each trip.

Guests have their choice of four lodging options for this package, including accommodations at the Point Montara Lighthouse Hostel. Package includes lodging, bike and gear rental, an "Eco-Culture" guide, monoculars for wildlife sightings, photo, and gift, and can also be upgraded to include other activities. Prices begin at $490 with lodging at the hostel.

If You Go 

Stay at the historic Point Montara Lighthouse Hostel.