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The best bike trails in Melbourne

Itching for a new adventure? Saddle up and explore the city on two wheels

Photograph: Josie Withers

Navigate the city's twists and turns with these scenic bike paths across Melbourne. With its well-ridden tracks, beautiful river paths and sweat-inducing hills, Melbourne’s prime for a bicycle take-over so saddle up and clip in.

Rather hoof it? Here are five great Melbourne walks. All that legging it will certainly call for a tipple, so finish the day with a drink at one of Melbourne’s best wine bars.

Melbourne's best bike rides

1
Lilydale to Warburton rail trail

Lilydale to Warburton rail trail

Total distance: 40km one way
Level of difficulty: Medium 

This historic trail is great for city slickers who wanna go bush. Following the path of the old railway line through the Yarra Valley, the trail kicks off behind Lilydale Railway Station, meandering beside scenic bushland, wineries and farmland. It's well looked after too – just be weary of the hoards of walkers and horse riders that flock here when the weather’s good. If the distance scares you, make a weekend of it and stay overnight in Warburton before riding back the next day.

2
Main Yarra Trail

Main Yarra Trail

Total distance: 22km one way
Level of difficulty: Easy-Medium

Starting in Eltham, this trail is a pretty satisfying ride towards Fairfield that follows the flow of the Yarra. It’s flat most of the way with loads of leafy corridors to pass through. Closer to the city the trail is sealed and your necessary pit stops include the Heide Museum of Modern Art and the colonial-era Fairfield Boathouse for some scones.

3
St Kilda Beach to Half Moon Bay

St Kilda Beach to Half Moon Bay

Total distance: 13km one way
Level of difficulty: Easy

It’s easy to forget how close we are to the Bass Strait when we’re holed up in the CBD. Get some ocean breeze up in ya with this scenic tour that starts at St Kilda Beach and hugs the coastline as it travels south-east around the bay. Bonuses include no bigs hills and Insta-worthy views while you pedal.

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4

Merri Creek Trail

Total distance: 21km one way
Level of difficulty: Medium

Starting at Dights Falls and winding its way across the city to the Western Ring Road, this trail is easy to miss, but easy to ride. Running along Merri Creek (who’d have thought?) the path goes through Brunswick and past CERES environmental park with only a couple of steep stretches that both Lycra-clad and skinny jean weekend riders can handle.

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Fitzroy North
5
Capital City Trail

Capital City Trail

Total distance: 29km loop
Level of difficulty: Easy-Medium

Riding this central loop has long been a popular option for Melbourme cyclists. Consisting mostly of sections of other trails, including the Merri Creek, Yarra Trail, Moonee Ponds Creek Trail and Inner Circle Rail Trail, the loop passes landmarks like Southbank, Melbourne Zoo and the Royal Botanic Gardens. Jump off wherever you please.

Rather hoof it?