It is the summer holidays in Sydney and you just want to get out of town and go for a relaxing bike ride on some shared paths and then chill out. So where do you go ?
There are three main areas that I like within 2-3 hours and these are Wollongong, the Central Coast and Newcastle and Bowral. All of these are accessible by train so that may solve the dilemma of how to get your bike there. Follow the hyperlinks below for the trails.
Wollongong is great because its 60km of almost continuous bike path all the way from Thirroul to Kiama. Then as a bonus there are train stations on the way at Thirroul, Bulli, North Wollongong, Oak Flats, Shell Harbour Junction, Minnamurra and Kiama so you can catch the train back. So, if you live anywhere near the south of Sydney, this is probably your place.
The Central Coast has a really nice ride from Gosford to Ettalong (40km return). This is really simple to get to by train from the north shore. There is also a ferry that usually runs from Palm Beach but this takes a bit of planning. Further on from there is Tuggerah Lake, Warners Bay (22km return)., Fernleigh track (28km return) and Newcastle Harbour (30km) which is really nice. These take a bit longer on the train. Some cyclists ride all over the place in this area but a lot of the riding is road based if you are not on the trails I have mentioned. All these rides are on this page.
The final place that I like is Bowral and the Bong Bong Track. This is really handy if you live near Campbelltown. The trail is 30km if you include a ride all around Bowral. Bundanoon is nearby, pretty town and mtb tracks and great views.
So what to think about ? Its summer so get out and about early if it looks like being a hot day. Apart from Fernleigh and Bundanoon, fire hazards shouldn’t be a problem. Whatever track you go on, don’t bother going out on total fire ban days without being informed, take water, sunscreen and cover up and have a great ride.
If you are driving with the Kids Bikes on the back
If you are driving off from Sydney on that big holiday and have the kids bikes loaded up, here are some places that are easy to get to.
The Northern end of Budgewoi Lake. – A treat for kids and quite close to that monster that is the Pacific Highway. Tide to the fish and chips and coffee shops in the small Budgewoi Village
Southern End of Lake Illawarra – Barely 5 minutes from the traffic jam that is Albion Park is a wonderful 10kms of lakeside riding.
Bong Bong track – Find it at the back of Burradoo, not so close to the highway but a treat of a ride for the kids
Lake Burley Griffin – Stuff the highways, head to the best complete lake ride in Australia
Newcastle Harbour – Book a day in Newcastle and enjoy the fab paths around the harbour
Just a little further away is Canberra and its pretty good at the moment and a new post from the Central Coast follow