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Alia Parker's picture

Sea, sun and cycling: why Narooma is a cyclist's haven

Cycling along the boardwalk at Narooma's Wagonga Inlet. Cycle Traveller

As we round the corner, the sudden view of Narooma's Wagonga Inlet glistening in the afternoon sun has me breathing all over the car window like an excited child. It's such a beautiful site to behold, and I'll be beholding it all weekend. With its white sand and aquamarine waters, the sleepy beachside hamlet of Narooma on the NSW south coast has long been a favourite holiday escape for east coasters, but it's the region's increasing focus on cycling that has us excited.

Alia Parker's picture

Cycling Newcastle's Fernleigh Track and Foreshore

Cycling through the Fernleigh Tunnel rail trail, Newcastle Australia. Cycle Traveller

I watch cyclist commuting through the city as I sit looking out an open cafe window. There are recreational riders, teenagers too, along the foreshore and on the bike trails. Everywhere you look, the grand architecture of old buildings has been restored, new businesses are opening, buzzing cafes and fine restaurants are full, and there is an undeniable sense of positivity radiating from the local residents. Whatever preconceived ideas you may have about the coal port of Newcastle, it's time to scrunch them up and start afresh. Newcastle is in the midst of a cosmopolitan renaissance and it's one of the most exciting pockets of Australia I have had the pleasure of visiting in recent years.

Alia Parker's picture

Different shades of Sydney on a Bike Buffs day tour

Crossing the Harbour Bridge bike path on a Bike Buffs cycling tour. Cycle Traveller

Graeme Dodd is setting up our bikes outside the convict-built Garrison Church in an old part of Sydney known as The Rocks. We're about to spend the next few hours on a Bike Buffs tour of Sydney, taking in the harbour from more angles than you think possible. In the group are three Americans, a Canadian, a Brit, and me – a born and raised Sydneysider. I know this city well, having cycled all over it, but I'm interested is testing the tour to see if it's worth recommending to visitors.

Alia Parker's picture

The ideal getaway: cycling in the Barossa Valley

Cycling through South Australia's Barossa Valley. Cycle Traveller

A nice way to sample South Australia's Barossa Valley wineries is by bike as the roads are already well 'treadded' by dedicated local cyclists. A hire bike from Barossa Bike Hire has me ready to go. There are many gorgeous boutique wineries in the Barossa, but my focus today is on some of the larger well-known drawcards.

Alia Parker's picture

Beer & bicycles: cycling the High Country Brewery Trail

Cycling along the Murray to the Mountains Rail Trail. Cycle Traveller

Whatever type of cycling you're into, Victoria's high country has something to offer, with the Murray to the Mountains Rail Trail, scenic roads and great mountain bike trails all on the doorstep of some fabulous craft breweries.

Alia Parker's picture

A gourmet cycling weekend in northeast Victoria

Milawa Gourment Region Pedal to Produce bicycle trail. Cycle Traveller

Picture a quaint trail through rolling hills basking golden in the afternoon sun; you're meandering along on your bicycle; you stop to lean it against a giant old oak, take a break to taste some gourmet cheese, sip a fine glass of wine. You fill your basket with jars of homemade olives, mustard and relish. Breath it in. No, you're not in France, nor anywhere in Europe, not even close. You're in the Milawa Gourmet Region in northeast Victoria on one of the region's idyllic Pedal to Produce bicycle trails.

Alia Parker's picture

Cycle through vineyards on Clare Valley's Riesling Trail

O'Leary Walker Wines, Bicycling The Reisling Trail, Clare Valley. Cycle Traveller

It's late summer when I hit the trail; the grapes have been picked, barrels are fermenting, hints of yellow are beginning to appear on the vine leaves and the late summer sun provides a comforting warmth on our backs are we ride. The flat path curves its way through bush, farmland and vineyards, largely keeping us away from vehicle traffic and in a tranquil state of bliss. You can ride its length at a leisurely pace in about 2.5 hours, but why rush when there's so much to see?

Alia Parker's picture

A cyclist's summertime mecca in the Australian Alps

The alpine scenery of Kosciuszko National Park, NSW, in summer. Source: Tourism Australia Copyright. Cycle Traveller

The Snowy Mountains are best known for the white powdery substance from which they derive their name, but this alpine region of New South Wales offers up some of the country's best cycling and mountain biking once the snow melts away. Summertime in the Snowies is a sensory delight. By October, the hoards have disappeared, the mountains resonate a meditative silence, and the undulating slopes are blanketed in tiny wildflowers.

Alia Parker's picture

Swimming among ancient Elephants in WA

 Elephant Rocks, William Bay National Park, Tourism Western Australia

The sublimely graceful Elephant Rocks of Western Australia's southern coast share something special with the edge of Antarctica - they are the same.

These ancient rocks slowly separated from their antarctic cousins over millions of years have been left scattered along the coast, beautifully rounded by the wild  currents of the Great Southern Ocean.


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