Background: Socio-ecological models emphasize the relationship between the physical environment and physical activity (PA). However, knowledge about this relationship in older adults is limited. Therefore, current study aims to investigate the relationship between area of residence (urban vs. rural) and older adults walking and cycling for transportation and recreation. Additionally, the relationship between the physical environment and walking and cycling was studied in eight subgroups (2 x 2 x 2: urban vs. rural, 65-74 year olds vs. _ 75 year olds and males vs. females).Methods: Data from 30,597 Flemish older adults collected in 2004-2010 through peer research were analyzed. Walking, cycling and environmental perceptions were assessed using self-administered questionnaires. The Study Service of the Flemish Government provided objective data on municipal characteristics. Multilevel logistic regression analyses were applied.Results: Urban participants were more likely to walk (OR= 1.40; 95% CI= 1.33, 1.48) but less likely to cycle daily for transportation (OR= 0.82; 95% CI= 0.76, 0.89). Area of residence was unrelated to weekly recreational walking/cycling (OR= 1.05; 95% CI= 0.98, 1.12). Perceived short distances to services was significantly positively related to daily walking for transportation (ORs ranging from 1.08 to 1.16) in all subgroups and to cycling for transportation in rural females and the oldest urban females (ORs ranging from 1.10 to 1.18). Satisfaction with public transportation was significantly positively related to the different PA domains in several subgroups (ORs ranging from 1.12 to 1.18).Conclusions: Our findings point to the importance of access to services and public transportation for increasing older adults' active transportation. The importance of other environmental characteristics remains unclear. Few differences between subgroups were observed.