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How Many Cities ...

Old 12-14-14, 05:32 AM
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How Many Cities ...

How many cities have you cycled in? Which ones? Especially those where you've opted to cycle rather than make use of a motor vehicle to get around transportationally or recreationally (i.e. sight-seeing).


Originally Posted by Machka
You could even go so far as to talk about what you liked about cycling in various cities. I may start adding those comments as well.
Originally Posted by Jim from Boston
An interesting question might be what did you think of those cities for cyling.

Last edited by Machka; 12-14-14 at 10:10 PM.
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Old 12-14-14, 05:37 AM
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I was thinking about this while we rode today ... it'll be a bit of a list ...

So in no particular order, and I may add to it as I think of more cities ...

UK
London -- I found cycling there to be exhilarating, heart in mouth stuff. There's no dilly-dallying about ... you've got to be the traffic and you've got to be aggressive, determined, and confident. But I've enjoyed cycling there.
Edinburgh -- relaxed and pleasant ... stunning city ... and really enjoyed cycling throughout Scotland in general as well. Given the chance, we'd return in a flash. This was one of those places I felt comfortable enough to think I'd like to live there for a little while.
Birmingham (skirted around the edge) -- heavy traffic and not very pleasant. But I had been warned ahead of time that it would be like that and it was really the only route through to where we wanted to go, with the time we had.
Bristol -- a little bit busy, but not too bad. We rode the road for a little while and then ended up on a cycling path
Newcastle Upon Tyne -- also a little bit busy, but not too bad. And here again, we rode the road for a little while and then ended up on a fairly decent cycling path which took us almost all the way to the ferry
Nottingham -- all quite comfortable road riding on several days
Plymouth -- cycling from the train to find accommodation ... all quite comfortable road riding, although a bit hilly. There are a few steeps ones. We would love to return to this area and explore further afield.
Portsmouth -- busy, but there are a few cycling paths. Would be nice if there were a clearer route between ferry and train station
Inverness -- just a little bit of cycling between train station and accommodation and back ... but walking and pushing the bicycles through about half of that. We ended up in the town square and it was absolutely filled with people. Once we were closer to the River Ness, we were able to ride a bit again.


France
Paris -- Similar to London ... I found cycling there to be exhilarating, heart in mouth stuff. There's no dilly-dallying about ... you've got to be the traffic and you've got to be aggressive, determined, and confident. But I've enjoyed cycling there, probably a bit more than cycling in London. And one of my best rides through Paris was quite late, after spending a thoroughly enjoyable evening listening to a friend play in an Irish Pub. We rode back to where we were staying with another friend, who knew Paris. There were enough street lights to see by and hardly any traffic on the road. It was beautiful!
Cycling up the Champs-Élysées on another occasion was a quite different ... too much traffic, too many people all while I was trying to negotiate cobblestones.
Bordeaux -- We didn't do a whole lot of cycling around Bordeaux itself ... probably more walking than cycling. The city has the usual central mall areas, jammed with throngs of people, so cycling through those areas is out ... walking is the way to go. But along the river there is a large wide open walk/cycle way. We discovered that we could cycle on paved cycling paths just about all the way from the train station to the campground we stayed in on the edge of the city. And then we discovered that we could continue on the paved cycling path all the way out to Lacanau Ocean on the coast. A person could do a full century almost entirely on paved cycling paths from the train station to the ocean and back. This is another area where we felt really comfortable ... not necessarily in Bordeaux itself, but definitely in Lacanau Ocean. We'd love to go back for 3 months or 6 months or something and rent a little holiday house there.
Strasbourg -- We had cycled up the Marne tow path more or less from Nancy to Strasbourg which was absolutely lovely ... and then it dropped us in the business district and ended. We had a bit of difficulty finding our way and my first impressions of Strasbourg were not particularly favorable, but as we moved out of the business district, the place grew on me. We also discovered bicycle lanes, cycling paths, and some incredible bicycle parking facilities.
Lille -- We were only there briefly, twice, but it seemed quite easy to get around and the area near the train station is beautiful with lots of character.
Brest -- I've only cycled here on the PBP, it's the B in PBP. Middle of the day, no problem getting through town and finding the control and then getting back on the road again. Brest is quite modern because it was destroyed in WWII so my impression was that the streets were wider which made for good cycling.
Metz -- We cycled from Luxembourg City, mostly on the Moselle tow paths, and then about 1 km from Metz, the path ended, and we had to tromp through a field and out onto the main road. So I entered Metz feeling rather dark about the place. It was easy enough to find the central square and tourist info place ... and traffic of all sorts seems to get along all right. Rowan went into the tourist info place, and I stayed with the bicycles ... and when I turned around to rest against the wall, my dark mood vanished. Metz has one of the most stunning and huge churches I've seen. It is quite a fascinating town ... we spent a couple days there, some cycling but mostly walking.
Caen -- I've been there twice and spent a bit of time cycling around trying to find the paved cycling path to Ouistreham. The bit of the city between the train station and the start of the path is fine ... the location of the path could be marked a little clearer, but that's OK. Both times I found it after riding up and down several streets. And the path is lovely. Ouistreham is where we catch the ferry across to Portsmouth, UK.
Perpignan -- We love cycling in France. We have enjoyed cycling pretty much everywhere we've been there. Except Perpignan. We did not find Perpignan to be particularly cycling-friendly ... heavy traffic, bad roads, lots of debris. One online article about the city told us that there were "several" kilometres of bicycle paths/lanes ... from what we saw while walking around (we gave up on the cycling after a couple attempts) I guess maybe 5 km could be called "several". And they weren't joined together ... a bit of a lane here and a bit of a lane there. But apparently they are working on it. There are plans in the works for 135 km of paths. So maybe it might be worth going back in a few years. I will add that the train was cheap-as there! After we got fed up with the cycling, we hopped aboard a local train (with the bicycles) and as I recall, it only cost us a couple Euro.
Nancy -- Traffic was a bit heavy in places, but not unmanagable. We cycled from the train station up a big hill to the campground and then cycled in the area around the campground on the next day or two. Although that was still within the city it was fairly quiet and residential there. Spectacular city square.
Calais -- Traffic was a bit heavy in places, but not unmanagable ... and very easy to get around.
La Rochelle
Dunkirk
Toulouse (very briefly)

Germany
Cologne
Dusseldorf
Duisburg (around the edge)
Bonn
Koblenz
(possibly more in Germany ... all along the Rhine)

The Netherlands
Amsterdam
Arnhem
Utrecht

Belgium
Ypres -- cobblestones!! We were there twice and loved the city (rebuilt like it used to be). Within parts of the city, the cobblestones are a bit of a challenge, but outside the city there are heaps of Fietsroutes. We'd love to go back and explore more.

Luxembourg
Luxembourg City

Switzerland
Sion (just to the edge of town)

Australia
Sydney
Melbourne
Brisbane
Perth -- we didn't cycle in Perth, but we did a whole lot of walking.
Adelaide
Canberra
Sunshine Coast (listed as a signficant urban area)
Wollongong
Hobart
Geelong
Cairns
Bendigo
Launceston
Albury-Wodonga
Rockhampton
Hervey Bay
Shepparton-Mooroopna
Warnambool
Albany
Devonport

Canada
Winnipeg -- lived and cycled there for 13 years. Within the city limits the drivers seemed generally unimpressed by cyclists. I've been shouted at, had things thrown at me, and was doored twice (where they drive up behind you and open the passenger door to hit you with it). Near the curb the roads were full of potholes and I ended up getting a mountain bike so I could ride more comfortably to and from work. But it is flat as a pancake and so it is actually quite an easy place to cycle, and I logged a lot of kilometres there. And if you get out of the city limits, into the country, the people there were really friendly.
Calgary
Edmonton
Regina
Abbotsford
Kelowna
Red Deer -- lived and cycled there for a lot of years. I started cycling in Red Deer when I was 6 years old ... both recreationally and to commute to and from school. Several years later, I moved away for a while, then returned relatively recently for 5 years. Red Deer has about 50 km of paved bicycle paths ... but unfortunately they are recreational. They don't really go anywhere. However, the city is quite easy to cycle around because it isn't huge and the roads are generally fairly wide. Most of my commutes were to my job located well out in the country, and that ride was lovely. Through the countryside on paved shoulders ... all except for one section that was a little rough and busy. We returned for a visit just a couple months ago, and discovered that they've been expanding the cycling opportunities, and if I were doing that commute now, I could bypass that section entirely and be on beautiful roads all the way. I wish Tasmania had roads like the ones around Red Deer.
Nanaimo
Kamloops
Chilliwack
Grande Prairie
Brandon
Airdrie
Okotoks

USA -- I've cycled near a lot of cities in the US, but in very few.
San Diego
Sacramento
Newton ... just outside Boston
Eugene
Boulder
Bellingham
Lake Charles
Cheyenne
Pascagoula
Davis

Taiwan
Hualien -- busy, busy, busy! Heaps of people on bicycles, scooters, motorcycles and cars ... looks like massive chaos at first, but there's a method to the madness. After about the third day there, I started to feel comfortable cycling. Get out of town a little way and there are some beautiful cycling routes with paved shoulders, paved cycling paths, etc.

Japan
Chitose -- very quiet roads, paved bicycle paths, flat and easy cycling
Tomakomai -- very quiet roads, paved bicycle paths, flat and easy cycling

Last edited by Machka; 12-23-14 at 05:19 PM.
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Old 12-14-14, 05:48 AM
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Pissing contest?
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Old 12-14-14, 06:12 AM
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Originally Posted by Roody
Pissing contest?
If you want to be negative about everything, as usual.

Or you could be positive about it and answer the question.


You could even go so far as to talk about what you liked about cycling in various cities. I may start adding those comments as well.
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Old 12-14-14, 07:02 AM
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Originally Posted by Machka
How many cities have you cycled in? Which ones? Especially those where you've opted to cycle rather than make use of a motor vehicle to get around transportationally or recreationally (i.e. sight-seeing).

Originally Posted by Machka
I was thinking about this while we rode today ... it'll be a bit of a list ...
So in no particular order, and I may add to it as I think of more cities…

Originally Posted by Roody
Pissing contest?
…Oh please, Roody.

An interesting question might be what did you think of those cities for cyling.

Here’s my parochial (North American) list, off the top of my head, roughly in amount of time spent there. Most of my riding in the non-residential cities beyond Michigan and Boston is done early in the morning and/or weekends, very often in association with business conferences, and limited to the downtowns.
  • Metropolitan Boston: premier (if you know your way around)
  • Detroit (proper): good infrastructure though I haven’t cycled there in a long time; the susburbs are my most recent experience, and the car is still king; nice bike paths but just recreational
  • Ann Arbor, MI: idyllic, with strong appreciation and support for cycling
  • Philadelphia: nice (most early morning rides)
  • New York (Manhattan): intense after about 6:00 AM. Central Park is a treat.
  • Baltimore: nice (mostly early morning rides)
  • Washington DC: pleasant and interesting, but slightly confusing street layout; suburbs were car-traffic-laden
  • Toronto (downtown): hairy main streets with no bike lanes, but interesting if you find alternate streets
  • Montreal: limited experience, but nice
  • Portland, ME; pleasant and friendly traffic
  • Miami Beach: a real treat, pretty pleasant streets
  • Los Angeles: limited experience, nice weather when I was there
  • Tampa: pleasant streets, nice weather
  • Bermuda, incl. Hamilton]: So nice, but could get boring
  • Charleston, SC: pleasant, historic and quaint
  • St. Louis: passed through on a Sunday Morning
  • Charlottesville, PEI: don’t remember much, but was low traffic

Last edited by Jim from Boston; 12-14-14 at 07:19 AM.
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Old 12-14-14, 07:07 AM
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El Paso, Texas
Denver, Colorado
Tucson, Arizona

You all may now stand in complete awe

EDIT: OK I didn't read Jim's post thoroughly - -

El Paso, Texas -- Wonderful city to bicycle in because there are few cyclists and so it's not a political "thing" and cagers largely ignore me
Denver, Colorado -- Poor cycling city, too many cyclists and all the cagers are mad already
Tucson, Arizona -- 40 years ago so I don't remember if I liked it or not

Further EDIT: I have ridden more USA cities than @Machka nyah nyah nyah
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Old 12-14-14, 07:11 AM
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Originally Posted by Jim from Boston
An interesting question might be what did you think of those cities for cyling.
Yes ... excellent question.


And I'll get around to answering that question with my city list over the next few days.
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Old 12-14-14, 07:17 AM
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Originally Posted by tractorlegs
El Paso, Texas
Denver, Colorado
Tucson, Arizona

You all may now stand in complete awe

EDIT: OK I didn't read Jim's post thoroughly - -

El Paso, Texas -- Wonderful city to bicycle in because there are few cyclists and so it's not a political "thing" and cagers largely ignore me
Denver, Colorado -- Poor cycling city, too many cyclists and all the cagers are mad already
Tucson, Arizona -- 40 years ago so I don't remember if I liked it or not

Further EDIT: I have ridden more USA cities than @Machka nyah nyah nyah
While I've cycled near all three places, I've never cycled in any of them.

But I'm only just getting going on my USA list. But wait, there's more!!
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Old 12-14-14, 07:29 AM
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Originally Posted by Machka
While I've cycled near all three places, I've never cycled in any of them.

But I'm only just getting going on my USA list. But wait, there's more!!
Wait...wait...I forgot Saginaw, MI. Is there a limit to size and population?

Originally Posted by Paul Simon
Cathy I said as we boarded a Greyhound in Pittsburgh
Michigan seems like a dream to me now
It took me four days to hitchhike from Saginaw
I've gone to look for America
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Old 12-14-14, 07:34 AM
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Originally Posted by Jim from Boston
Wait...wait...I forgot Saginaw, MI. Is there a limit to size and population?
Nope ... whatever you think of when you think of "city".
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Old 12-14-14, 07:54 AM
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Originally Posted by Jim from Boston
Wait...wait...I forgot Saginaw, MI. Is there a limit to size and population?
From that Paul Simon quote, I see riding must be better than hitch-hiking
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Old 12-14-14, 07:59 AM
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Des Moines (USA) - destinations seem to move farther away from you when there's a headwind.
St Paul (USA)- Gee, wonder how far it is to Minneapolis.
Minneapolis (Siberia) - Gee, where the hell am I?
St John's (Canada) - Sure glad I have a triple on this thing
Toronto (Canada) - Wonder what happened to the bike trail?

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Old 12-14-14, 08:12 AM
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Originally Posted by Machka
How many cities have you cycled in? Which ones? Especially those where you've opted to cycle rather than make use of a motor vehicle to get around transportationally or recreationally (i.e. sight-seeing).
Since this is an LCF forum I'll also include walking besides cycling. I've done a lot of walking in my life not only for recreation but also for transportation. So here is the list of countries/cities that I lived in and walked/cycled in:

Lodz, Poland
Bad Gleichenberg, Austria
Cape Town, South Africa
Vanderbijlpark, South Africa
Mississauga/Toronto , Ontario Canada
Hamilton, Ontario Canada
Halton Hills, Ontario Canada
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Old 12-14-14, 08:27 AM
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Originally Posted by Roody
Pissing contest?
Feeling grumpy or what ??.. Does every thread on LCF forum have to contain strange ideologies, pipedreams, living green, economics and politics and other OT nonsense ??? ...I don't see anything wrong with Machka's question. It's right on topic.
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Old 12-14-14, 08:41 AM
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If I'd been counting them along the way I might know. But I never considered it worth allocating brain cells for. Much easier to answer how many bikes I own!
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Old 12-14-14, 09:03 AM
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Originally Posted by wolfchild
Feeling grumpy or what ??.. Does every thread on LCF forum have to contain strange ideologies, pipedreams, living green, economics and politics and other OT nonsense ??? ...I don't see anything wrong with Machka's question. It's right on topic.
Um.. I think he was just asking for more detail on something that was removed from the post. If I happen to mention an unusual event in a post, feel free to ask about it...
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Old 12-14-14, 10:23 AM
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Originally Posted by Machka
I was thinking about this while we rode today ... it'll be a bit of a list ...

So in no particular order, and I may add to it as I think of more cities ...

UK
London -- I found cycling there to be exhilarating, heart in mouth stuff. There's no dilly-dallying about ... you've got to be the traffic and you've got to be aggressive, determined, and confident. But I've enjoyed cycling there.
Edinburgh -- relaxed and pleasant ... really enjoyed cycling throughout Scotland
Birmingham (skirted around the edge)
Bristol
Newcastle Upon Tyne
Nottingham
Plymouth
Portsmouth
Inverness

France
Paris
Bordeaux
Strasbourg
Lille
Brest
Metz
Caen
Perpignan
Nancy
Calais
La Rochelle
Dunkirk
Toulouse (very briefly)

Germany
Cologne
Dusseldorf
Duisburg (around the edge)
Bonn
Koblenz
(possibly more in Germany ... all along the Rhine)

The Netherlands
Amsterdam
Arnhem
Utrecht

Belgium
Ypres

Luxembourg
Luxembourg City

Switzerland
Sion (just to the edge of town)

Australia
Sydney
Melbourne
Hobart
Canberra
Brisbane

Canada
Winnipeg
Calgary
Edmonton
Regina

USA
San Diego

Taiwan
Hualien
What! No pictures?
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Old 12-14-14, 11:11 AM
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Philadelphia
State College, Pa
Allentown, Pa
New Hope, Pa
Stroudsberg, Pa
NYC
Chicago
Portland, Or
Seattle
Amsterdam, NL
Gouda, NL
Leiden, NL
Strasbourg, F
Mulhouse, F
Heidelburg, DE
Frankfurt, DE
Nuremberg, DE
Mannheim, DE
Trier, DE
Mainz, DE
Koblenz, DE
Flensburg, DE
Frieburg, DE
Friedrichshafen, DE
Lindau, DE

Konstanz, DE and CH
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Old 12-14-14, 04:14 PM
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Originally Posted by I-Like-To-Bike
What! No pictures?
I could!!
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Old 12-14-14, 05:04 PM
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Originally Posted by I-Like-To-Bike
What! No pictures?
Originally Posted by Machka
I could!!
Too funny!!
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Old 12-14-14, 10:17 PM
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Originally Posted by Jim from Boston

An interesting question might be what did you think of those cities for cyling.
+1. A list, as Machka proposed, is a pissing contest. Observations and insights about various cities, OTOH, can be quite useful and interesting. I LOVE reading about cycling in different places and cities around the world. But a bare list of cities you've been to is boring braggadocio.
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Old 12-14-14, 10:48 PM
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Originally Posted by Roody
+1. A list, as Machka proposed, is a pissing contest. Observations and insights about various cities, OTOH, can be quite useful and interesting. I LOVE reading about cycling in different places and cities around the world. But a bare list of cities you've been to is boring braggadocio.
Produce your list of cities, Roody.

A bare list is just fine ... we don't mind ... or if you want to add some comments, that's OK too. You could even add photos if you like.
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Old 12-15-14, 09:09 AM
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Originally Posted by Machka
Produce your list of cities, Roody.

A bare list is just fine ... we don't mind ... or if you want to add some comments, that's OK too. You could even add photos if you like.
Puhleeze! He can also abstain if he likes. Not everyone needs to put their entire life online.
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Originally Posted by Bjforrestal
I don't care if you are on a unicycle, as long as you're not using a motor to get places you get props from me. We're here to support each other. Share ideas, and motivate one another to actually keep doing it.
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Old 12-15-14, 09:46 AM
  #24  
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Originally Posted by Artkansas
Puhleeze! He can also abstain if he likes. Not everyone needs to put their entire life online.
If he doesn't post, we'll know it's him.
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Old 12-15-14, 10:25 AM
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I have a pretty long list of cities I've ridden in but I'm skeptical that I have much useful to say about a city I spent only a few days in.

I've commuted on a regular basis both in Europe and the US.

As a general rule, I like older cities for cycling in and I certainly prefer living in older cities and neighborhoods. The advantage of older cities are that there are multiple ways to get from point A to point B.

I grew up in New Orleans. It has its share of issues for commuting as the drivers are not the best but there are lots of ways to get around and so it is, I think, a good commuting city.

I lived in Boston for a long time. The population density is very high and the road system is, to put it mildly, chaotic. I'm all in favor of population density from an environmental point of view but I found the bike riding in Boston somewhat of a mixed bag. There are just so many people coming at you from all different directions. I've done some serious traffic jamming (including urban areas larger than Boston) but Boston is just tough.

I can't complain about my fair city of Des Moines where I currently live. It has a world class system of MUPs. It has lot of secondary roads and the drivers by and large are fairly courteous.
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