Brisbane Valley Rail Trail + Scenic Rim Hike
Be one of the first to cycle the newly opened Brisbane Valley rail trail, now Australia’s longest official rail trail. Whilst in the region, we take the opportunity to hike the Scenic Rim trek graded as one of the Great Walks of Australia. Fully guided throughout, 5 nights luxury accommodation, gourmet meals and incredible memories.
The Brisbane Valley Rail Trail has recently been completed and is now the longest rail trail in Australia. Tour de Vines is the first tour operator to put together this unique cycling itinerary. It would be remiss to not explore the stunning Scenic Rim trail nearby, graded one of the Great Walks of Australia, and so we have combined these two incredible experiences on a multi active tour. All inclusive in true Tour de Vines style.
South East Queensland
Whilst not as famous or flashy as it’s Gold Coast or Sunshine Coast cousins, inner south-east Queensland is an adventure paradise. World class walking, the new Brisbane Valley Rail Trail and yes wine making, are all here. And all within short reach of Brisbane.
Brisbane Valley Rail Trail – cycling
This recently completed cycling and walking path is a fantastic feat of development by the local councils and volunteers. At 161kms in length it is the longest rail trail in Australia. It is a mixed surface cycling trail, and so we use well-equipped mountain bikes. Although small sections are paved, the majority of the trail is either hard packed gravel or dirt track. There are some stunning bridges, some we cross and some we go under, and being elevated at the northern end there are terrific views. It’s undeniably outback Queensland but we have found a couple of gourmet secrets so we do get to enjoy quality meals.
Cycling the BVRT is a little bit of an adventure. It’s still on the easy side in terms of difficulty, the distances aren’t great and we start at the northern end so it’s largely downhill. But it’s not a paved path (and not a mountain bike single track either, but somewhere in between). So some basic biking skills are required.
Scenic Rim Trail – hiking grade
The Scenic Rim refers to the chain of mountains incorporating the Great Dividing Range, the Border Range and Tamborine Mountains. The best way to explore this region is on foot. Being the only Great Walk of Australia in Queensland, this is a region that is still relatively undiscovered & unexplored with world-class hiking trails, accommodation, guides and interpretation.
Each evening we experience an accommodation experience like no other. Located 600 meters above sea level on a private nature refuge, we ‘glamp’ in 10 permanent ‘safari- style’ tents with polished timber floorboards, plush beds & a large armchair on your private deck perfect for looking out onto the magnificent mountain views surrounding you. Chef prepared meals, wines and unparalleled star views around a campfire is how camping should be done!
The Scenic Rim Trail hike is graded moderate to hard and is designed for people with a good level of fitness who have had previous hiking experience. Day 1 is graded moderate (grade 3) and day 2 is graded hard (level 4). The only equipment you will carry is your hiking pack (32L) and the essentials you need for the walk that day. Items might include; a camera/GoPro, jumper, any personal medications you require, a hat, 2x 750ml water bottle and your pre-prepared lunch. Your guides will also carry tea and coffee.
Ride, hike, taste and savour the sights and trails of south east Queensland. This is a fully guided tour, and we look after you from start to finish. Quality accommodation, new bikes, experienced guides, gourmet meals, wine tastings and transport are all included. Sit back, cycle and hike, and enjoy all the best of this beautiful and stunning region of Australia on this exclusive and unique experience.
Brisbane Valley Rail Trail Tour Dates 2019
One exclusive tour starting 2nd July 2019 – strictly limited numbers
- Cycling on Australia's longest rail trail amongst real Queensland outback
- Hiking the incredible Scenic Rim Trail one of Australia's Great Walks
- Chef prepared food whilst glamping at our luxury campsites
- The view of the stars from around the campfire high up on the Rim trail
- Meeting new friends and socialising in a small group of like-minded riders.
Itinerary at a glance
Day 1: Arrival Brisbane: Arrive Brisbane airport, this evening we enjoy our first group meal, where you will meet your guide, ask as many questions as you like, and get to know your fellow cyclists. Transfers, dinner & accommodation (4*) included.
Day 2: Brisbane to Yarraman (cycling 50kms downhill): After breakfast, we transfer to the start of the Brisbane Valley Rail Trail (BVRT). We start from Yarraman we enjoy a downhill roll and expansive views. We ride enjoying the BVRT with highlights including the Harlin tunnel and crossing the restored heritage listed Lockyer Creek bridge. Accommodation tonight is 3/3.5 star clean comfortable motor inn at Esk.
Day 3: Esk to Ipswitch (40kms flat): We jump back on the BVRT after our café breakfast to experience a different section of the trail, heading toward Ipswitch in a southerly direction. Keep an eye out for wildlife including koala, echidna, emu and more. The trail is pretty much flat today and provides a new outlook. The incrediby well restored rail stations on route make great photo opporutnities. Some of the outback scenery is memorable.
We transfer at the end of our cycling to luxurious Hidden Vale Resort complete with beautiful natural surrounds in the Lockyer Valley. Relaxed luxury is the vibe here and award winning dinning, featuring a mix of beautifully restored Queenslander style cottages dating back to the 1800s. After our 2 days on the BVRT this is a stunning resort and most welcome.
Day 4: Hidden Vale to Scenic Rim hike (13kms/6 hrs): After an early breakfast and transfer, we commence with a 5 km gentle uphill hike. . We reach Millarvale Creek where we enjoy a brief stop for afternoon tea. Keeping your eyes peeled for wallabies, we will cross open woodland forest to Spicers Canopy at around 4pm. A warm welcome from our Camp Host and onsite Chef await along with freshly made afternoon tea and cold beverages. There is now time to unwind, relax in a bean bag, take a dip in the hot tub and have a hot shower before meeting your group back in the main lodge for your chef- prepared and locally sourced evening meal. After dinner, enjoy an outdoor fire as you gaze up to the night sky and discover the constellations, learning the ways the early settlers used the stars to navigate their way through this region.
Day 5: Hiking the Scenic Rim trail (15kms/8 hrs): After a hearty breakfast, you will begin a gentle meander along Oakey Creek, where you’ll have the opportunity to look for goannas, wedge tail eagles and wallabies. From here, we turn east and begin our ascent to Spicers Peak, keeping your eyes peeled for the endangered Glossy Black Cockatoo and by mid- morning we take a break and boil the billy. From here, you will continue climbing, but it is worth the effort as you break above the tree line and are rewarded with panoramic views of the Great Dividing Range and Mt Mitchell.
There is one final push before lunch, using a support rope to climb up to where the trail leads from a drier grass tree plateau, through to the dense rainforest of Spicers Peak, complete with giant ferns, grass trees and awe-inspiring three hundred-year-old hoop pines.
After a lovely relaxed walk through the cool temperate forest, take a seat at our designated stop and enjoy a well-deserved lunch before pushing on for the last 2 hours of the hike. A stretch of downhill leads you across a saddle and onto the final ascent up Cedar Mountain where you will find the luxurious Spicers Peak Lodge, where refreshing towels and beverages will be waiting for you.
Cheers to finishing the walk, before you are all transferred back down to Spicers Canopy to enjoy your final night on the Scenic Rim Trail. We enjoy a celebratory dinner to toast our acheivements and another night under the stunning stars in our glamping accommdoation.
Day 6: Sirromet Winery & transfer to Brisbane: We take the chance to relax our legs today and reward oursevles with some gourmet treats. Our transfer back to Brisbane is via a stunning lunch at the popular Sirromet Winery in Mount Cotton south east of Brisbane. Enjoy the highly regarded food and wine and the memorable views at this acclaimed winery where we enjoy a ‘Behind the Scenes’ winery tour and tasting followed by lunch on the Tuscan Terrace. We will arrive into Brisbane around 4pm after a 1 hr drive. Onward transfsers and/or hotel drop offs are included.