An assortment of roads to ride near Australia's largest cities.
Words: Matthew Shields
Finding a place to go for a good ride near one of Australia’s capitals is a priority high on the agenda of many motorcyclists. Here we rate some of the best riding roads close to all the state and territory capital cities to make finding a great place to ride all the more easy.
Road: Kings Highway – Canberra, ACT
Rundown: For a good ride on the tarmac out of Canberra, follow the Kings Highway out of the nation’s capital and head east. Very soon you are over the border into NSW and the town of Braidwood signals when this stretch of busy country road turns into a fantastic drop down the Great Dividing Range to the coastal town of Batemans Bay.
Road: Tanamai Track – Darwin, Northern Territory
Rundown: There’s nothing too fantastic around Darwin aside from Hidden Valley Raceway, so find something with a set of knobbies that’ll do big distances in the outback. The Tanamai Track is a must-do and the 314km stretch from Alice Springs to the old Rabbit Flat Roadhouse is a great way to get a taste of what it’s like to properly explore the outback. Just make sure you have enough fuel to get back to Alice.
Road: Mount Glorious – Brisbane, Queensland
Rundown: Right on the outskirts of Brisbane is Brisbane Forest Park, a location that holds within it The Gap, Mount Nebo and Mount Glorious. It is easily one of Australia’s best riding roads and definitely hard to beat on proximity to a capital city. Weekdays are the quietest and best time to ride as lots of tourists and motorcyclists use it on weekends.
Road: The Gorge Road – Adelaide, South Australia
Rundown: Following the Torrens River just to the north-east of Adelaide is The Gorge Road. There’s fantastic scenery along the way, plenty of places to stop and best of all the road is short enough to easily do a couple of times in a day. Once you hit Guneracha, turn around and head back west through Chain of Ponds to Adelaide – itself another fantastic road to ride.
Road: Putty Road – Sydney, New South Wales
Rundown: On the north-west outskirts of Sydney’s urban fringe the town of Windsor is your last stop before turning north and heading up the Putty Road to the Hunter Valley town of Singleton. The 234km stretch of road parallels the coastline inland and has every kind of corner you could imagine with a superb 16km stretch of tight, tarred corners at its northern end.
Road: Lyall Highway – Hobart, Tasmania
Rundown: Straight out of Hobart, the only road to the west is the Lyell Highway – a varied 300km stretch of road with spectacular scenery all along the way. At the western end is the port town of Strahan that sits at the mouth of Macquarie Harbour and as such is home to some pretty spectacular river cruises in a wonderful part of the world.
Road: Reefton Spur – Melbourne, Victoria
Rundown: North-west of Melbourne running straight through the middle of the Yarra Ranges National Park from Warburton is the Reefton Spur. The 21km section between Reefton and Camberville is made for motorcycles and is short enough to do a half dozen times before lunch. It’s heavily-trafficked on weekends, so ride it during the week if you can.
Road: Chittering Road – Perth, Western Australia
Rundown: Heading north along the Great Northern Highway, turn off a Bullsbrook for a ride along the upper end of the Swan River on the Chittering Road. The run is around 40km following the river along the valley and, as a result, has lots of corners making it the perfect place to escape the city and have truly enjoyable day out!