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4
Introductory to Moderate

Traveller Rating

 

Activities
  • 3 days self guided cycle
Accommodation
  • 3 nights hotel/motel accommodation

Price

4 daysfrom

$890AUD

 
 
Trip Code: BVT

Brisbane Valley Rail Trail Self Guided Cycle Trip highlights


  • Enjoy the independence of self-guided cycling with all logistics taken care of for you
  • Hassle-free cycling on the dedicated cycle path on the Brisbane Valley Rail Trail
  • Appreciate the views of rural Queensland with sweeping valleys and rugged mountains
  • Sample beer and bakery treats along the route
  • Visit historic towns and villages
  • Cycle through classic Australian farming communities

Between Wulkuraka and Yarraman in southern Queensland is the remnants of the Brisbane Valley rail line, constructed over 29 years between 1884 and 1913. The steam locomotives have long gone, replaced by cyclists following the same path. The conversion of the rail line to a cycle trail took a little less time, about 11 years with completion in 2018, only possible through the dedication and hard work of locals keen to showcase this special region of Australia. At 161km (100mi) in length, the Brisbane Valley Rail Trail (BVRT) qualifies as the longest rail trail in the country. Our cycle tour starts at the top of the range, giving you an easy start downhill to the plains of the Brisbane Valley and back to Wulkuraka over three days. The cycling is on mixed surfaces of gravel, dirt and asphalt and is achievable for anyone of reasonable fitness and cycling ability. Along the route you'll pass through prime agricultural land, a rugged mountain range and forests of Blackbutt, Hoop Pine and Cedar. Stops at historical townships with good coffee and bakery items, interesting museums and friendly pubs are all part of the BVRT experience. At night, stay in comfortable accommodation and soak up the atmosphere of country Queensland towns. With all your logistics taken care of including transfers, bike hire, luggage transfers and accommodation bookings, all you need to do is enjoy the cycle day and take in the expansive scenery of this truly outstanding route.

Itinerary

On arrival, make your way to your hotel in the centre of town. Ipswich is easy to reach by train from central Brisbane - there are regular services taking 60 minutes. The remainder of the day is free to explore Ipswich. To set the mood for your rail trail experience, why not visit the Workshops Rail Museum with its exhibits of locomotives. You can also visit the art gallery, Queens Park or take in the cafe's, restaurants and shops at 'Top of Town' on the historic part of Brisbane Street. Dinner at leisure.

Meals:  Nil

After breakfast, a transfer will take you from your hotel to the township of Yarraman, the northern end of the Brisbane Valley Rail Trail, 'BVRT' approximately two plus hours north west. The transfer itself out through the Brisbane Valley is a scenic drive through rural areas with sweeping views up to the ranges to the west following and crossing the Brisbane River along its upper reaches. This is prime agricultural land and even with the ever increasing urban sprawl of Brisbane and Ipswich still produces a lot of produce for the Brisbane market. As we head further north we start to head more west and up into the ranges where the climate, soil and vegetation is markedly different from the plains. By the time we reach the town of Blackbutt the primary reason for the rail systems construction is on display. This is timber country with huge hardwood trees, one species giving it's name to the town of Blackbutt but there is also huge stands of Hoop pine, cedars and other quality timbre. In fact the early colonial houses of Queensland, many call 'the Queenslander' built of timber with huge verandahs and standing on tall wooden posts were built by timber sourced from this region, milled then transported along the rail system we now call the Brisbane Valley Rail Trail. The steam locomotives have long gone and now replaced by cyclists following the same path. Our cycle tour starts at the top of the range giving you an easy start downhill to the plains of the Brisbane Valley and back to Walkuraka over three days. Today you cycle from Yarraman to Linville. An ideal lunch spot is in Blackbutt which is only a leisurely 19km along the trail, and has a terrific bakery selling pies. Continuing from here, the route takes you down into the Benarkin State Forest, a scenic section of the trail with impressive views. At the foot of the ranges is the small town of Linville, with its historic station and railway carriages a reminder that you are on an old rail trail. Overnight Linville ascent: 221m, descent: 533m

Meals:  Nil

From Linville this morning you still have around 128 kilometres of the 161km trail to cover and today you’ll be cycling to Esk passing though the towns of Moore and Toogoolawah. Along the way you will notice a number of sign posted locations that were once rail stops but now stand as little more than punctuation marks on a rail history long gone. The township of Moore is just 7 kilometres from your start in Linville this morning and is an ideal place with a couple of great cafes to head for quality coffee. You’ll then pass through the heritage listed Yinbun Tunnel, the only tunnel constructed on the entire line and a classic photo opportunity. The township of Toogoolawah is a further 27km from Moore and conveniently located as a great lunch and rest spot. You can spend a little time exploring this classic Queensland country town before heading off on the last leg for the day, a further 19 kilometres to the township of Esk. The small town of Esk has become popular with day trippers from Brisbane, Ipswich and surrounding areas and unless coming into the Brisbane Valley from the north this is the gateway town into the region and as such many people stop for a bite at one of the great cafes, browse the range of shops or simply take a break before heading north. Just west of the town are the eastern slopes of the Great Dividing Range rising to the Ravensbourne National Park and a number of cyclists and others have reported deer sightings in their travels which explains some of the deer paraphernalia you may see in this town. Overnight Esk. ascent: 255m, descent: 282m

Meals:  B

This is the last day in the saddle but with around 65 kilometres remaining you still have some great cycling ahead. If you are looking for good coffee and a big breakfast Esk won’t disappoint with a couple of great cafes that open early and welcome cyclists or ‘rail trailers’ as they are called out here. The whole rail trail enterprise has been warmly welcomed by businesses in the region who have seen not only the economic benefits of rail tourism but also how it has raised the profile of the region more generally. From Esk you will spend the day cycling back to Wulkuraka. It is an easy ride along well maintained cycle trails passing through the towns of Coominya a possible morning tea stop then onto Lowood and Fernvale, each town having a range of lunch break options. This is still rural Queensland almost until you reach the outer suburban areas near Wulkuraka with some great rural views along the way with glimpses of the Brisbane River. At one point you’ll pass right alongside it just down stream for the huge Wivenhoe Dam. On arrival in Wulkuraka, the trip concludes after the bike and luggage handover. From Wulkuraka its an easy train trip back to Ipswich or into Central Brisbane. ascent: 420m, descent: 499m

Meals:  Nil


Map

Elevation

The map and elevation chart are for illustrative purposes only and meant to provide general guidelines.
On self guided trips, actual route information provided before departure will be more detailed.


Inclusions

  • 1 breakfast (continental style)
  • 3 nights accommodation in hotels and motels on a twin share basis with private facilities on most nights
  • Mountain bike hire including a helmet and bike lock (on request), Hand pump, repair kit (electric bikes and tag-along bikes can be hired for an additional supplement)
  • Luggage transfers on cycle days - please ensure you have no more than one piece per person weighing 15kgs max (excess luggage charges apply for additional bags and/or weight)
  • Route notes & maps available to download and use on your phone
  • GPS information
  • Transfer Ipswich to Yarraman
  • Bike return on last day

  • Travel to/from Ipswich and Wulkuraka
  • Accommodation before or after the trip
  • Travel insurance
  • Most meals
  • Phone handlebar mount

Bike information


Trail Surface


Accommodation


Grading

Introductory to Moderate  
4

This self guided trip involves 3 days of undulating, dedicated cycle trails. Daily cycling distance varies from 43km to 67km. The Rail Trail is mostly gentle, with a few longer ascents that on completion you are rewarded with stunning views. The Rail Trail path is shared between walkers and horse riders, but is free from road traffic. The trail surface is made up of either gravel or dirt which can sometimes be soft and therefore requires care. The trail is best suited to mountain bikes - we provide hard tail mountain bikes, or you can pay a supplement for an e-bike.


Departure dates

Daily departures

Notes

DN1
Prices are based on standard category rooms. Supplements may apply where the standard category is not available or an upgraded room is required.
DN2
Please note, when we book your accommodation some hotels may request a deposit/full payment to secure your booking. This amount will be payable, in addition to the Australian Cycle Tours deposit. Any extra payments, along with the $400 deposit, are non-refundable.

Want to organise a customised tour?

School groups, friends, family trips, corporate events or just tailoring a trip to suit your own needs - learn how you can tailor your own Customised Tour.

Total Priceper person from

$890AUD

Options & Supplements*
  • Discount to remove bike hireAUD$-175
  • E-Bike supplementAUD$140
  • Single supplementAUD$290
  • Single Traveller SurchargeAUD$310
*Prices listed are per person and also from

Essential Information

Ready to book? Make sure you download and read the detailed Brisbane Valley Rail Trail Self Guided Cycle trip notes which contains all the essential information you need to know before booking. Once you’ve booked, we will supply you with a Pre-Departure document which contains a detailed gear list and other important information to help you prepare for your adventure ahead.


Frequently Asked Questions

Ipswich is approximately 31 kilometres from Brisbane. The drive will take approximately 30 minutes.

There is a direct train departing from Brisbane Central station, platform 5 station, and arriving at Ipswich station, platform 1 station. Services depart every 15 minutes, and operate every day. The journey takes approximately 58 min and costs $5-7.

Alternatively, there is a direct bus departing from Brisbane and arriving at Ipswich. Services depart twice daily, and operate every day. The journey takes approximately 42 min and costs $5.

Visit https://translink.com.au/seq for further information.

At the end of the trip you can take a train back to Ipswich or Brisbane from Wulkuraka.

The train from Wulkuraka to Ipswich departs hourly and takes 5 minutes.

The train from Wulkuraka to Brisbane departs hourly and takes 75 minutes.

Visit https://translink.com.au/seq for further information.

Yes, you need to be a capable cyclist. You will cover between 43km to 67km in a day. Most of the cycling is along the dedicated cycle path. The Rail Trail path is shared between walkers and horse riders, but is free from road traffic. The trail surface is made up of either gravel or dirt which can sometimes be soft and therefore requires care.

The trail is best suited to mountain bikes - we provide hard tail mountain bikes, or you can pay a supplement for an e-bike.

Yes, you can use your own bike if you prefer. Let us know at the time of booking and a small discount will be applied.


Brisbane Valley Rail Trail Self Guided Cycle Videos

Experience the Brisbane Valley Rail Trail

Brisbane Valley Rail Trail Self Guided Cycle Trip reviews


Why cycle with us

SELF GUIDED EXPERTS

As the pioneers of self guided active travel in Australia you can expect a seamless experience. Our quality tour notes and logistical expertise sets us apart and ensures a quality experience for you.

TRUSTED LOCAL ADVICE

Our team is passionate about cycling and their extensive knowledge and experience means you get the very best advice - every time. We will help you tailor the right cycling itinerary for you.

Quality services

Expect first-class and flexible support both on and off the trail. We've sourced the highest quality bikes and most authentic accommodations so you can enjoy a stress free cycling trip.


Positive Impact Travel

By joining this trip you are directly supporting positive impact projects in line with the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

We’ve offset the carbon emitted by this trip by purchasing credits that support important projects that address the UN’s seventeen SDGs, like reducing poverty, affordable and clean energy, reducing hunger, clean water and climate action.

Proceeds from this adventure purchase carbon credits through the world’s largest and most awarded carbon project developer, South Pole, which are invested into projects accelerating the transition to renewable energy sources in developing countries.

Supported projects are based on internationally recognised standards and are third-party audited. They entail a series of positive impacts on the ground, which benefit local communities and ecosystems, that are aligned with the UN Sustainable Development Goals.

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