Nothing makes people look cooler than a motorcycle, and celebrities embraced the biker culture and its coolness right from the beginning. Biker gangs were hanging out with rock stars, legendary custom bike builder Indian Larry used to hang out with Andy Warhol, and there have been countless movies and tv series glorifying and vilifying the biker lifestyle. Not to mention the impact biker style clothing has had on fashion over the years. It really doesn't matter why celebs ride, all that matter is that they ride. Motorcycle sales have dropped massively the last decade and a half, and if seeing a celebrity riding a bike will inspire someone to take the plunge and start riding I'm all for it.
Updated March 2022: If you like motorcycles and celebrities, you're in for a treat. We've updated this article with even more information about these famous motorcycle riders and their bikes.
There is actually some evidence to prove that famous people have a positive impact on bike sales. When Ewan McGregor and Charley Boorman set out on their Long Way Round adventure, sales of adventure bikes went up. Same thing with Norman Reedus' motorcycle show — people have told him they never considered riding before, but now they want to get a motorcycle. So keep it up celebs, ride in public as often as possible, and make sure you get your photos taken while straddling your badass bike so you can be a source of inspiration for a new generation of riders out there - just like the previous generation of bikers inspired you to start riding.
25 Olivia Munn
The actress and model began her career in television journalism before she got into acting. Growing up with two brothers you'd think she would have gotten into motorcycles at an early age, especially with one of her brothers owning a custom motorcycle shop, but that wasn't the case.
When Munn first started riding as an adult she admitted that riding the bike in traffic was just too scary, so she preferred to circle her neighborhood when no one was looking. Clearly, she got used riding it since she can now be seen on two wheels on public roads.
24 Ewan McGregor
Ewan McGregor is almost as famous for being a biker as he is for being an actor, and has been into bikes ever since he was a kid and regularly rode on the track with his friends. He and his buddy, Charley Boorman, made the motorcycle travel series 'Long Way Round' and 'Long Way Down,' documenting their extreme motorcycle adventures, and rumors say there is another 'Long Way' documentary in the pipeline.
McGregor has a unique collection of classic Moto Guzzis, a brand he's so passionate about that he's now a brand ambassador for them.
23 Keanu Reeves
Keanu Reeves has a seriously impressive bike collection, but apparently, that wasn't enough for him. He decided to take his passion to the next level... by starting his own motorcycle company.
Reeves teamed up with Gard Hollinger, a bike builder from California, after meeting each other while Reeves was visiting a custom bike shop to look for a sissy bar. Together they formed Arch Motorcycle Company, and later released Keanu's brainchild and first original design - the KRGT-1. Arch has since gone on to create more bikes.
22 Christian Bale
You've seen him riding Batman's bike, but Bale is actually a big fan of riding in the real world as well. Shortly after their daughter was born, his wife Sibi convinced him to stop riding on public roads, but he kept racing on the track... until he had an accident and had to promise to stop racing as well.
Perhaps track days are still an option? But with a body full of metal parts and screws, it's probably better to avoid further injury and keep the focus on his career - being Batman is almost as cool as riding a motorcycle.
21 Orlando Bloom
Most people know Orlando Bloom as a successful actor. But there aren't many who know about his other big passion: motorcycles. Bloom has been a long-time fan of BMW motorcycles, and he owns and rides a number of BMW models, including some old classics. The most famous one is perhaps the custom-built S1000R he's got in his collection.
He's even known to bring his cute little pet dog, Mighty, along on his motorcycle rides. While sitting in a bag he gets to feel the wind on his face as the pair cruise the roads of California.
20 Gerard Butler
The actor had a motorcycle accident back in 2017, but that didn't stop him from riding, which makes him a true motorcycle lover - It would be so easy to hang up the helmet and gloves for good after an experience like that.
Butler has done a lot of great motorcycle trips, including Indonesia and India - which is one of the most dangerous countries in the world to venture out on the roads. Of all his motorcycle journeys, he says the most incredible one was when he rode through Zion National Park in Utah.
The pop singer is married to motocrosser and freestyler Carey Hart, whom she proposed to via a pit-board during a race, so it was perhaps inevitable that Pink eventually got into bikes herself - in fact, she's so much into bikes now that she posted "Some girls like diamonds, I like heavy metal and carbon-fiber and chrome" on her social media.
She has regularly been spotted around LA riding a Harley-Davidson Sportster and a modified Triumph T100 Bonneville, probably because these bikes are fairly low, making it easier for the short superstar to put her feet on the ground.
18 Bear Grylls
The hardcore survivalist Edward Michael "Bear" Grylls is a famous adventurer and author, but he's also had a healthy obsession with bikes for years. It shouldn't come as a shock, considering the crazy stuff he's done on his shows - this guy truly loves adrenaline.
He started riding when he was 16 and was immediately hooked, from there he went on to ride all kinds of different sized bikes - from 125cc's to 1200s. It was only natural that Triumph chose Bear Grylls to present their updated adventure bike, the Tiger 800, at a press launch - who possesses a more adventurous spirit than him?
17 Justin Timberlake
Justin Timberlake might not be the first celebrity to pop into your mind when talking about famous people who ride bikes? Probably because he's not one of those Hollywood celebs who try to pull off a 'live-to-ride' image in order to seem cooler than they really are.
But the actor/singer does occasionally manage to escape the camera-wielding paparazzi to get out there on the open road on his bike. Ask anyone who rides, and they'll tell you that riding a bike is by far the best way to bring sexy back.
16 Alanis Morissette
Alanis Morissette is known for riding motorcycles and even said it helped her get through the breakup with Ryan Reynolds, another celebrity motorcyclist. We have no idea if he was the one who turned her on to bikes in the first place though.
Alanis seems to be quite a fan of the Italian brand Ducati, having been spotted on the streets of LA riding a few different models, one of them a Monster S4RS - quite an entertaining bike if we may say so - and there's nothing ironic about that.
15 Bradley Cooper
At one point he was the ‘World’s Sexiest Man,’ at least according to a poll conducted by People magazine back in 2011. Cooper has been the star of the Oscar-nominated American Sniper, as well as American Hustle, and The Hangover series.
Just like several other celebs on this list, Bradley Cooper seems to have a fondness for the Triumph Bonneville. Clearly, he has a sense of adventure as well, because he doesn't just ride on California's highways - Bradley is known to have Triumph bikes made available to him when shooting movies abroad.
14 Michael Fassbender
The German/Irish acting star Micheal Fassbender has clearly had a great upbringing, as he has been riding bikes his whole life. After he was done filming 'Prometheus' he did what anyone would do if they had the chance - he went on a two-month, 3000-mile motorcycle holiday with his father, Josef, around Europe.
Even though he has a passion for modern Triumphs, it was his dad who rode the Triumph Tiger during that trip. Michael rode a BMW GS he bought after his Triumph Speed Triple 1050 had been stolen.
It might have been a while since we heard from Jewel. One of the reasons could be that she's been too busy riding motorcycles and just enjoying life, seeing as she has actually ridden across America.
In interviews, she has commented on the differences between driving a car and riding a bike, “When I drive a car, I am able to let my mind wander to worry about work, or even to write a song. But on my bike, safety is first, and it forces me to focus and live in the present, and so the scenery and the day and the air and curve in front of me fill all my senses -- it's great."
12 Hugh Laurie
Hugh Laurie made his debut on Not The Nine O'Clock News team, then he went on to appear on Blackadder and Fry and Laurie. Now he's gained worldwide fame through his role in the medical drama House, which also happened to make him the highest paid TV actor in the world.
He's also had a long time passion for bikes, with a particular interest in the Triumph Bonneville which he has been regularly seen riding around LA. The Triumph isn't the only bike he rides though, he's also been enjoying some time on Yamaha's XJR 1300 and the sporty Honda CBR600RR.
11 Richard Hammond
Richard Hammond is one of the world's most famous car journalists as a part of the Top Gear and Grand Tour trio. He's also extremely passionate about bikes, which could be seen in a Top Gear episode where he rode a Vincent Black Shadow in a race against a steam train and a classic Jaguar XK120.
"Hamster" started riding a Honda MTX 50 when he was 16, and from there he has built a rather nice motorcycle collection consisting of all kinds of bikes from several different brands.
10 Jay Leno
Jay Leno’s love of automobiles and motorcycles has become iconic over the years. He has one of the most impressive automotive collections in the world, with several hundred cars and somewhere around 100 motorcycles.
His collection covers a wide variety of bikes, old and new, including rare and wonderful machines such as a 1931 Henderson Four, a bunch of different Vincents and Brough Superiors, and the very special jet-powered Y2K - which apparently once melted the bumper of the car behind him while waiting for the light to turn green.
9 Ryan Reynolds
Ryan Reynolds has a real passion for two-wheeled machines. He started riding on a Honda CB750 when he was 15 and was instantly hooked. After moving to LA at age 18, he used riding as a way to avoid the sensory overload of living there, and even today he rides to clear his mind.
Reynolds has a passion for café racers and owns several custom bikes made by famous builders such as Kott and Deus Ex Machina. These rolling pieces of art are perfect for someone who compares riding a bike to yoga - "There's nothing to do on a bike but ride and breathe."
8 Tom Cruise
Tom Cruise needs no introduction. The Hollywood A-lister and star of the Mission Impossible franchise routinely rides motorcycles in his movies, as well as performing most of his own stunts.
He doesn't just ride in his movies though, motorcycles have been a passion for him since he was a kid, with his favorite bikes being the fast and powerful ones - such as the Vyrus 987 C3 V4 found in his collection. Tom has always loved the thrill of living on the edge, and the easiest way to get that adrenaline fix is to throw a leg over a bike and head for a twisty road.
7 Norman Reedus
You might know Norman Reedus as Daryl Dixon on the show The Walking Dead, but that's not the only show he's doing. He's got another AMC show called Ride With Norman Reedus, and that should give you a clue that he loves to ride motorcycles.
Reedus is borderline obsessed with the Triumph Tiger, he'll take it on trails, rides to work on it, he even rode it all the way to Nashville. In the rain. The bike he used in the first season of his show was replaced after clocking up more than 30,000 miles, and the new bike was, of course, a customized Tiger 800 XCA.
6 Brad Pitt
For most, riding a bike is synonymous with freedom, for Brad Pitt it offers another kind of freedom as well. He has said one of the reasons he prefers bikes to cars when going out on the roads of LA is the anonymity it provides him. Once that helmet is on he gets to blend in and the paparazzi have no idea a superstar just rode past them.
Brad has a pretty impressive collection of high-quality bikes from different manufacturers, with everything from Harley-Davidson choppers, to Japanese superbikes and Italian exotica.