When you hire from Rentabike @ Federation Square we will give you a copy of our FREE MAP of Melbourne’s Top 5 Rides.
Our most popular rides include a loop to St Kilda and back along the beach, taking in the famous Melbourne Cricket Ground and Rod Laver Arena, Royal Botanic Gardens and Albert Park Lake grand prix track.
Another great ride is along the Yarra River right in front of our shop to the old Abbotsford Convent and Collingwood Children’s Farm cafes and restaurants.
If you want a bigger challenge: tackle one of the great Rail Trails on disused railway lines just an hour from Melbourne by train: The Warburton or Bellarine Rail Trails.
Here’s a taste of our Top 5 Rides to help you plan your visit.
St Kilda Beach 24km, 2.5 hrs
Highlights: Yarra River, Royal Botanic Gardens, War Memorial, Albert Park Lake & Grand Prix Track, Acland St, St Kilda Pier & back along the beach.
Options: Head down Moubray St to groovy Chapel St or follow the beach from St Kilda to famous bathing boxes at Brighton Beach (7km).
Studley Park Boathouse 24km, 2.5 hrs
Highlights: Pleasant Yarra River ride via Collingwood Children’s Farm & Abbotsford Convent arts precinct.
Options: Side trip to Fairfield Boathouse through riverside parkland. Shortcut return via backstreets & MCG.
Capital City Trail 30km, 3hrs
Highlights: Quiet Yarra River stretches, Collingwood Children’s Farm & Abbotsford Convent arts precinct, Moonee Ponds Creek under freeway overpasses & Docklands.
Options: Visit Melbourne Zoo.
Sports & Parks 15km, 1.5 hr
Highlights: Yarra River, MCG, Rod Laver Arena, Soccer Stadium, Royal Botanic Gardens, The Tan running track, War Memorial, Albert Park Lake & Grand Prix track.
Options: Chapel St shopping and café district.
Williamstown & beyond 30km, 2-3hrs
Highlights: Docklands, Williamstown historic port.
Options: Ride beyond Williamstown to Altona via wetlands (12km each way) Take a ferry to or from Williamstown & ride from there or catch the train back to Flinders Street Station from
Williamstown or Altona.
If you want a bit more adventure there are two wonderful "rail trails" on disused trainlines just an hour or so away from Melbourne... and easily reachable by train.
You can pick up your bike from Rentabike @ Federation Square then jump on a train right across the road at Flinders St Station for the trip to Geelong or Lilydale for these fantastic day trips. We've done both rides and highly recommend them. The countryside between Lilydale and Warburton is particularly beautiful, and is the kind of scenery that inspired the famous Heidelberg School painters in the early 20th century.
THE WARBURTON RAIL TRAIL NEAR LILYDALE (pictured above)
You can hire a bike from Rentabike @ Federation Square and head to the Warburton or Bellarine rail trails by train from Flinders St Station right across the road.
For the Warburton Rail Trail catch a train to Lilydale which is just under an hour away.
From there it’s just a kilometre to the start of the famous railway line which was abandoned in the 1960s and now leads riders on a fairly flat 40km route to the village of Warburton.
Along the way you pass through some really beautiful Aussie farmland and rural scenery, over creeks and through forests and a couple of towns. (See photo above)
The Carriage Cafe in an old railway carriage at Seville and the Cog Cafe and bike shop at Warburton are among the great places to stop for food and drink and a rest along the way.
Once you get to Warburton you can turn around and ride back, or we can organise transport for you and your bike back to Lilydale train station for the return to Melbourne.
Just send us an email and a bit of warning and we'll contact a private transport company which will bring you and your bikes back from Warburton to Lilydale Train Station for the one-hour train ride back to Melbourne. The transfer cost is $45 per person and bike.
THE BELLARINE RAIL TRAIL NEAR GEELONG
The other great rail trail close to Melbourne is the Bellarine Rail Trail which runs 33km from Geelong to Queenscliff.
Again… you can hire a bike from Rentabike @ Federation square and simply cross the road to the Flinders St Train Station to begin your journey.
Catch the train (or ride via South Wharf and Docklands along the Yarra River) to Southern Cross Train Station and catch the V/Line train to Geelong South, which takes an hour.
From there you can ride to the historic coastal holiday town of Queenscliff through the gentle rolling hills of the Bellarine Peninsula which is famous for its wineries and bay views.
In Queenscliff, which dates back to the 1860s, there are plenty of cafes, or buy some takeaway fish and chips to enjoy on the beach.
You can then retrace your steps by riding back to Geelong and returning to Melbourne by train.
A BIG ADVENTURE: "AROUND THE BAY IN A DAY"
If you’re up for an adventure and a more challenging ride go “around the bay in a day” by taking the hourly ferry from Queenscliff to Sorrento on the other side of Port Phillip Bay.
Tickets cost $11 or $8 for kids, and bikes travel for free.
Once in Sorrento you are on the Mornington Peninsula and it’s a 50km ride along the coast to Frankston where you can catch a train back to Melbourne
If you want to head out of town for a few days the Warburton Rail Trail is in the heart of Melbourne’s famous Yarra Valley Wine Region.
From Queenscliff you can explore Point Lonsdale, Ocean Grove and Barwon Heads which are all popular beach holiday destinations for Melburnians.
On the Mornington Peninsula Sorrento is the gateway to some great wineries and also ocean adventures including boating and snorkeling adventures involving fur seals and dolphins.
If you want to make an early start, you can pick up your bike from Rentabike @ Federation Square the day before, and keep it at your hotel.
You can take your bike on trains free of charge (try to avoid peak hour).
THE GREAT OCEAN ROAD
For the touring cyclist, the ultimate is to ride The Great Ocean Road... built by returned soldiers after WWI it is the longest war memorial in the world... blasted and cut out of the cliff-face with hand tools. We recommend taking your bike on the train to Warrnambool and riding back, so you're away from the cliff edge on one of the most-beautiful and winding of roads in the world.
You can camp, or stay in campground cabins, youth hostels, hotels or guest houses along the way. It's a good 5-7 day ride.
Your itinerary might look like this: Day 1. Train Warrnambool. Day 2 Warrnambool to Port Campbell. Day 3. Port Campbell and Twelve Apostles to Apollo Bay. Day 4. Apollo Bay to Torquay. Day 5 Torquay to Queenscliff. Day 6 Ferry to Sorrento and return to Melbourne.
For travel to Lilydale, Geelong and Frankston or Warrnambool you need to buy an electronic Myki Card which will set you back about $6. Then you add credit to it using cash or credit card in the machines at any train station.
A round trip to Geelong will cost you between $16 and $24 depending on the time of day and week. A round trip to Lilydale or Frankston is just $7.52.
Rentabike and Real Melbourne Bike Tours owner Murray Johnson, 61, has been a traveller all his life. He knows the value of local knowledge, and he's happy to help you plan your trip to Melbourne. Just drop him an email with any questions you have and he'll do his best to help out.