Melbourne  –  family friendly bike rides…

Kew Boat houseKew Boat house

One of the best things about Melbourne, (other than its cafes, pubs and international cuisine) is the option to explore by bike… (and the bonus is that parents can still get in their coffee fix en-route).  There are countless trails that criss cross the city and are  perfect for young and old.  Bike riding in Melbourne is  a great way to get a feel for the city.  I’ve listed some of our favourites and some that we will be exploring as part of our micro adventure bucket list…


The best known bike trail, Capital City Trail, which might be a little long for the novice bike rider, however you can opt to do sections of the trail based on your needs and/or  riding ability.

 Capital City Trail – 29km
This bike trail gives the rider a great glimpse of Melbourne’s suburbs, with good bike paths.  Starting off in Southbank or as the map suggests at the Hawthorn Velodrome and East around Melbourne, going past Abbotsford Convent, Collingwood Children’s Farm, Dight Falls and onto Fairfield Boat house. 

​check out the Youtube clip to get an idea of the complete trail though it is done in reverse.

Bike Hire:
Rentabike @ Federation Square

​St. Kilda to Half Moon Bay  – 13km approx.

The bike trail starts at St Kilda beach and takes you on a gorgeous coastal ride with views of the Bay. The trail is great for those experiencing Melbourne for the first time. It is suitable for families and  the novice bike rider as it is fairly flat, however it can be busy especially on the weekends.

Check out the YouTube clip to get an idea of the terrain!

Bike Hire: 
St. Kilda Cycles 

Yarra Trail (City to Fairfield ) – 18 km approx.
We have ridden many times along this section of the trail (see images above) and is a great area to explore with kids. The bike trail takes you along the iconic Yarra River, give yourself plenty of time to stop along the way. 
The section of most interest for families will be around the suburbs of Abbotsford and Collingwood Children’s farm. Take a break at the historical Abbotsford Convent, where you can explore and rest for lunch at the gorgeous cafe and or the weekend market.
Alternatively you can stop the Collingwood Children’s farm (they have their own cafe too, right along the bike path) and the kids can say hi to the animals (see Melbourne Top 10 with Kids)


Yarra River

Lysterfield Park – Lake Circle Trail – 6.25 km
Lysterfield Park offers families an excuse to get out and explore a little further afield.  Located south east of the City, the area is home to many bike trails, including the bike course trail, used during the 2006 Commonwealth games. 

The park offers a range of rides and experiences including the family friendly Lake Circle Trail. 
The added bonus is that you also canoe in Lysterfield Lake and/or swim in the two specially designated swimming bays. 

*Note you have to bring your own gear to canoe and/or sail as you can’t hire those locally. 

Bike Hire:
Trail Mix offers bike hire (min. age 10+ years for bike hire) and they also run a cafe at Lysterfield Park. 

Maribyrnong River Trail – 28 Km
The trail follows the Maribyrnong River and takes your through Melbourne’s north western suburbs. The trail offers an easy to moderate ride.  The ride takes you past the Docklands, the Polly Woodside Museum (sailing ships), and to Brimbank Park  perfect spot for a rest stop. 

Bike Hire:
Freddy’s Bike Tours – you can book a tour or hire a bike, including a kids trailer
Rentabike @ Federation Square 

If you are in Melbourne for an extended period of time or live here, there are also great rides further afield and one our family challenge list is to do one of the rail trails in country Victoria. 

Bike Tours
Alternatively if you don’t want to organise a day of bike riding yourself, why not join an existing bike tour. 

Below are some useful links
Reid Cycles – Best 5 bike rides in Melbourne
Rail Trails Australia

Hope you get a chance to try out one of the trails, feel free to leave a comment or tips on any of the above. 

3 thoughts on “Melbourne  –  family friendly bike rides…

  1. I just love how complete this article is. It covers all the information I can ever need. I love physical activity and travel and biking combines these two passions into one. I really appreciate the diversity of your choices and the scenery that goes along with each route. Thanks again for this article.

  2. My two passions are physical activities and travel and biking puts these together! I love your recommended trails! Those videos are definitely helpful in choosing and preparing for the ride. Which trail can you recommend for a beginner like me?

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