While Australia still is bicycle crazy, their love of the sport began over a century ago.
The initial cycling craze began more than a 100 years ago in the 1860’s when the velocipede was invented. Both men and women were fascinated with this new creation constructed out of iron or wood with pedals, and in 1869, Melbourne hosted the first velocipede races. These were uncomfortable so by the 1870’s and 1880’s, the high-wheeler was invented, which many of us refer to as a unicycle. In 1875, the Melbourne Bicycle Club was created and became a mainstay for everything cycling related. Different races began, including the Austral Wheel Race, often referred to as the Melbourne Cup of cycling.
Jump to today and we see that cycling is still as strong as ever. With electric bikes and hire bikes becoming increasingly popular, cycling is growing from strength to strength. You can check out the costs of hiring a bike on For Her About Her By Her to see if bike hire is the best option for you, whilst plenty of cycling shops now sell electric bikes, perfect for those of you who live in particularly hilly areas. Cities are becoming increasingly cyclist-friendly too, as planners see the benefits of reduced car use and scientists push the health benefits of cycling rather than driving to work.
Cycling Cities in Australia
Whether you jump on a bicycle to ride to work or just to explore some trails, these are the most accessible bike cities in Australia:
- Sydney-While the city features rolling hills, it doesn’t deter the locals. In fact, around 20 percent of them ride their bicycle at least once a week. In the last few years, more community bicycle groups have formed, as well as the Bike Film Festival. The creation of electric bikes has gained popularity in Sydney as well and you’ll find locals riding them to work.
- Melbourne- Often referred to as a “true cycling city,” It’s where cycling began and you’ll still find meet-ups and hang-outs, as well as vintage bicycles. However, many locals have upgraded to riding either mountain or electric bicycles along scenic trails like the Capital City Trail or the Main Yarra Trail, where you’ll pass landmarks, such as Yarra River, Yarra Bend Park, and Collingswood Children’s Farm. Recently, the city council has been working to improve cycling and its safety by eliminating a car lane for cyclists to use.
- Adelaide-While it hosts the championship Tour Down Under each January, Adelaide offers plenty of everyday recreational biking opportunities as well. It features a flat streets with lots of bicycle lanes, but also features nearby trails and rolling hills for scenery. Both men and women are expanding their cycling repertoire from everyday road bikes to mountain and electric bikes, and the local shops provide the needed answers on how to purchase the best one.
- The electric bike allows you so much more freedom. You can ride it to work or around town without extra effort, charge the battery, and return home. If the battery does die, you just use it as regular push bike until it’s recharged or replaced.
- Australia’s Ride2Work program encourages locals to bike to work instead of driving. This protects the planet by saving gas. They’ve had over 55,000 people register and join this program, with a 50 % increase after the annual Ride2Work day in October.
- Cycling Australia allows you to buy different membership packages and stay involved. The whole family will have fun from junior recreational riding to inclusive cycling to watching different competitions.
Other Facts about Australia’s Love of Cycling
If you want to experience Australia’s love of cycling, consider buying an electric bike. As mentioned, they are extremely popular in major cities in Australia and you can purchase electric bicycles Sydney from eBikesDirect. They feature all the best stylish models of Australian bikes.
Over 100 years later, Australia still loves its cycling and in fact is due to host the 117th Austral Wheel Race December 20th. But other things have changed in that while cycling is still competitive, it’s also become a way of life and recreational, especially with the invention of the electric bike.