Cycling really had its moment in early 2020, when going for a pedal became one of the only acceptable ways to get out of the house during the worst of the COVID-19 outbreak.
Luckily for us, the Northern Beaches have some of Sydney’s best cycle tracks and paths. There are options for on-road cycling, mountain biking and flat trail riding for children.
Take a look at the best cycle tracks on the Northern Beaches and in nearby areas.
Easy Trails on the Northern Beaches
There is a cycle path along the beach in Manly that is flat and great for families. While it’s not a lengthy ride, it is a nice way to spend some time with children or make your way to the Manly ferry.
Manly has plenty of bicycle racks so you can enjoy a pedal, jump off to have some lunch or ice cream, then continue exploring the suburb without having to pay for parking. Just remember to lock up your bicycle when you stop.
This cycle track is ideal if you have children. Located halfway between Manly and Palm Beach, it has picnic spots to stop and play or grab something to eat.
The trail is almost all flat and goes for 8.4 kilometres all the way around the lagoon. It isn’t all paved so a thin road bike won’t be so comfortable to ride but kids’ bikes handle the terrain well.
Take some drink bottles as it can feel like quite the journey for little legs.
Mona Vale to Church Point (and beyond)
Most of the distance between Mona Vale and Church Point can be cycled carefully on the footpath if you are accompanying children. Once you complete the five-kilometre distance, you can stop at the Church Point Waterfront Cafe or Pasadena Pantry for a hot drink or some takeaway food before returning.
Road cyclists can continue up the steep McCarrs Creek Road, all the way to the Ku-Ring-Gai National Park, where the view at West Head makes the sore legs worth it. Be wary around corners as drivers are not always careful on this windy road.
Learn to ride on the Northern Beaches
Passmore Reserve, Manly Vale
Located on Campbell Parade is spacious parkland with a bicycle circuit that’s ideal for little pedals.
This is a great place to teach children to ride as they can wobble off to a soft landing on grass and take a break at the playground when they have had enough.
Flying Fox Park, Mona Vale
Flying Fox Park at Winnererremy Bay in Mona Vale has a small oval-shaped loop for bikes, rollerblades, skateboards and scooters.
In summer kids can paddle in the bay and there is a coffee shop for snacks and lunch as well as a playground.
Off road riding on the Northern Beaches
Manly Dam Cycle Track
This is one of Australia’s most popular and ridden trails when it comes to mountain biking. There is generally plenty of parking in the area and also picnic spots for after you have finished your ride.
Manly Dam’s mountain bike trails can be quite technical, with lots of rocks and single track. It is also a busy trail that is popular with hikers and people walking their dogs so you do have to be respectful of others. There are some lovely spots that overlook the area and you will always see a friendly face.
Check the weather before you plan to ride Manly Dam as the trail can sometimes be closed after heavy rain.
Terrey Hills Trails
Further up the road, there are plenty of mountain bike trails in and around Ku-Ring-Gai National Park and the suburbs of Terrey Hills and Duffy’s Forest.
Drive up and make a day or afternoon of it by choosing a cycling track that suits your skill level. You’ll find descriptions of the different options here: http://nobmob.com/rides/terreyhills.
Northern Beaches Mountain Bike Park
Due to be completed in spring 2020, the Northern Beaches Mountain Bike Park includes 1.6km of gravity trails, a pump track and skills area with lots of dirt jumps for adrenaline junkies. Less experienced riders can start on the pump track and skills area before working through a progression zone and then tackling the advanced gravity trails.
This is an exciting development that local riders have been looking forward to for a long time.
BMX Track, Terrey Hills
This BMX track is open to the public whenever there aren’t events on. According to the website, “recent investment from Warringah Council (now Northern Beaches Council) has meant that the Terrey Hills BMX track has undergone significant improvements in the past few months and is now regarded as one of the best facilities of its kind in Sydney.”
As well as enjoying the outdoors with your family, owning bicycles is a great way to support local businesses. There are plenty of good bike sales and repair stores in our area who will help you choose the right set of wheels and will keep your bike road-worthy.
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