A country that’s home to lush rainforests, stark deserts, soaring coastal cliffs and native wildlife deserves to be explored. Rather than hop in the car, why not jump on a bike to get up-close and personal with Australia’s magnificent scenery?
It might not sound relaxing, but a cycling trip across Australia’s fantastic trails is an investment in fitness and memorable experiences. From easy paths along rail trails and epic battles with up-hill treks, here’s a look at some of our country’s best.
Mt Buller, Victoria
Mt Buller’s slopes are well-known for fun in the snow, but mountain bike riders enjoy the Australian Alpine Epic. The trip takes from four to seven hours and quite a bit of endurance, so it’s for immediate to advanced riders.
However, if you can take on the challenge, you’ll speed through deep forest, with scenic river views and fresh, mountain air for company. Don’t forget to book in for a massage afterwards…
Forget busy roads and even seeing other people on the way, on Tasmania’s Maria Island. The National Park offers wide tracks perfect from leisurely bike rides. There’s plenty to see, including wombats and kangaroos among the sweeping, coastal views.
Explore the convict relics at Darlington, admire the Painted Cliffs and have a picnic lunch when you find just the right spot – but remember to bring your own, as you won’t find a single store in sight. The island is easily accessed by ferry, from Triabunna.
Albany, Western Australia
When you want a scenic route on quiet roads, with the chance to see a dolphin or to, the Albany to Frenchman Bay trail is for you.
Albany to Frenchman Bay, Western Australia
When you want a scenic route on quiet roads, with the chance to see a dolphin or to, the Albany to Frenchman Bay trail is for you. It’s easy to conquer in a day and you’ll see some of the incredible highlights of the region, including Princess Royal Harbour, the Salmon Holes and the Blowholes.
Take some detours along the way, to discover hidden gems like wildlife frolicking in their natural environment. If you do choose to do a day trip, it’s quite a popular early-morning ride, so you probably won’t have the route to yourself.
Tasmania’s East Coast
This one tops many wish lists for keen bike riders. Take heed though, because two of the inclines are called Bust-Me-Gall Hill and Break-Me-Neck Hill. This is a trip you can take over a week or two, to enjoy remarkable detours into Tasmania’s finest displays of nature.
From Launceston, you pedal to the coast of St Helens for beaches galore, before turning inland towards Hobart. You can visit the Freycinet Peninsula and Elephant Pass this way as well. If you don’t feel comfortable on a long ride, there’re plenty of bike tour companies to guide you on your way.
Are you ready to see Australia by bike? Your health, and your memory bank, just might thank you for it.
Nicole Leigh West
Nicole Leigh West is the author of fiction novel, 'The Gypsy Trail' and an internationally recognised travel and lifestyle writer.