Mountain biking & cycling around Darwin
Darwin is home to a variety of sealed and unsealed cycle paths designed to give you access to the town’s stunning nature parks and reserves.
With plenty more trails opening in Darwin and throughout the Top End soon, it’s a place to keep your eye on.
Charles Darwin National Park trails
Within riding distance of the city, this National Park has evolved over the years to be a great riding destination all year round. From the trailhead at the central car park, lose yourself in this complex network of hand crafted singletrack and machine built flow trails, with the odd technical challenge thrown in to keep you honest. With the evolution of expanding trail networks inside this park, Charles Darwin would be pleased to see this living namesake.
Towards dusk, biting bugs come out to prove that you aren’t at the top of the food chain so don’t forget your insect repellent!
Casuarina Coastal Reserve trails
A tight park that packs a lot in. Recent work has gone into extending the riding season here, as some sections of trail feel outright jungle-like with lush vegetation caressing both shoulders as you duck and weave through the trails. Some of the trails have names that reflect the military history of this area. Getting locked and loaded down Lee to climb Enfield is a fun shootout, as is firing down Bren, Vickers or Treasures.
Don’t forget to drop by one of several sunset spots right next to the trails, such as Darwin Surf Club, and grab an icy-cold beer to re-hydrate. Join the daily Darwin ritual of hanging on the beach and watching some of the best sunsets in the world.
Howard Springs (unsanctioned trail – ride with caution)
There are stories of mystical surf breaks that break once a year on a Tuesday morning when everyone is at work. Then there are the less spectacular but reliable locations delivering a rideable wave, day in, day out. Howard Springs, thank goodness, is the latter.
This extensive network of pine forest trails about 30km east of the city (near Palmerston) has been keeping the locals happy year-round since forever. So hit up the DORC to find out the next ride day, dust off your hardtail 29er, slam the stem and smash some cross country laps.
For more information download the latest Darwin Mountain Bike Trail Map or chat to some locals when you arrive.
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Trail users should keep to the signed official MTB trail network and approach unsanctioned trails with caution. Be aware that trespassing on private property is a punishable offence.