The Great Barrier Reef may get the press, but we’re partial to the great hiking and biking we’ve found in the bucolic Barossa Valley, on Kangaroo Island, among the vineyards of Margaret River, in Tasmania, the Melbourne Surroundings, and the Sunshine Coast Hinterlands.

Spend a few days in Sydney to see the harbour, Opera House, and Bondi Beach—then escape to the countryside to spot kangaroos, wombats, platypuses, and koalas. You’ll soon fall in with the country’s energetic vibe, which may just be fueled by the ubiquitous, and excellent, coffee.

In the Barossa Valley, near Adelaide, the elegant Louise hotel is a perfect base for cycling and walking. On pastoral Kangaroo Island, there are quiet roads, bouncing creatures, and the outstanding Southern Ocean Lodge.

In Western Australia, Margaret River attracts artists and tourists who enjoy the vibrant small towns, countless vineyards, Indian Ocean beaches, and native forests.  Cape Lodge, in the heart of the region, is a great base to explore the area on two wheels.

Then there’s wild Tasmania, known for the furry Devil, diverse landscapes, and unique lodges. Ride up the east coast to Saffire Lodge, a perfect base for exploring rugged Freycinet National Park on foot and quaint coastal fishing villages on two wheels. There is also great cycling in the Huon Valley and up Mt. Wellington just south Hobart. Spectacular hikes abound, including around iconic Cradle Mountain and the Tasmanian Wilderness World Heritage Area.

A short drive from Melbourne is the spa town of Daylesford.  The Lake House Hotel & Restaurant is the ideal sanctuary, set among wombat forests, rolling countryside, and charming towns.  The Mornington Peninsula just south-east of Melbourne combines chic seaside towns, vineyards, 19 golf courses and countless quiet smooth roads.

The Sunshine Coast Hinterlands south of Brisbane offer bikers and hikers national parks, sub-tropical jungles, waterfalls and expansive views of the surrounding mountains. Perched atop the Blackall Mountain Range sits Spicer's Clovelly Estate.

The One & Only Hayman Island is located in heart of the Great Barrier Reef and Whitsunday Islands.  Accessible only by private, seaplane or helicopter, this is the ultimate oasis after any trip Down Under.

We started our journey in Western Australia at Cape Lodge.  Every ride was about 34 picturesque miles, with flocks of parrots overhead and kangaroos in the fields.  Having been in the food business for 33 years, I can say that every meal was meticulously selected and served.  The rides were so well executed and the whole trip felt masterfully planned. What a luxury it was to be a guest on the most amazing bike trip ever!                                                 G.A., New York, USA

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