A freelance writer living by Moreton Bay. Visit my website at www.traceylloyd.com.
Published November 22nd 2010
Take advantage of Brisbane's glorious weather and use pedal power to see the city sights. City Cycle, the bike hire scheme from the Brisbane City Council will let you pick up a bike at a dedicated bike station located from Newstead through the CBD and across the river to Kangaroo Point and West End.
Brisbane is home to over 900 kilometres of bike tracks and the City Cycle stations have been created to allow Brisbanites to enjoy cycling without the hassle. The City Cycle stations are located close to public transport so there's always an option of catching a bus, train or CityCat to get back to your starting point if you find out you're not quite as fit as you think you are.
Council's website has a full list of the bike paths around Brisbane and the City Cycle website lets you search for cycle stations in Brisbane so you can plan your journey ahead of time but if you're short of ideas, why not pick up a bike at Kangaroo Point, ride across the Story Bridge and head down to the café society of Merthyr Road, New Farm or pack a picnic and enjoy it at New Farm Park. You can return City Cycle bikes at both of these locations.
To get back to your starting point you can retrace your bike journey or jump on a CityCat and enjoy a relaxing river cruise. Pick up a bike in the CBD and the world is your oyster: head across the Goodwill Bridge and investigate South Bank and the museum precinct by bike or stay on the northern side of the river and head out towards Milton and Toowong or follow the river east out towards Newstead and New Farm.
You will need a subscription to hire a bike from the City Cycle service and subscribers must be a minimum of 17. Subscriptions start from $11 for a casual single day subscription through to $60 for an annual subscription for the hardcore city cyclist. After the subscription is paid, bike hire is free for 30 minutes. There is no limit on the number of consecutive free 30 minute hire periods you use. If you forget to return your bike within 30 minutes you will be charged an additional fee. The other important item you need when cycling is a bike helmet. If you don't have a good old fashioned stack hat sitting in a cupboard somewhere, a number of Brisbane retailers have bike helmets available for hire as part of the City Cycle service. If the thought of using a pre-loved bike helmet doesn't float your boat you can pick up a serviceable brand new helmet for under $20 from major retailers like K Mart and Big W.
The City Cycle bikes have been specially designed for use in an urban area and feature three speeds, a covered chain mechanism to spare your clothes from any dust, dirt or grease, a basket on the front (for your purchases or picnic) and a lock and chain so that you can keep the bike safe while you pop in to café for a coffee or frappe. City Cycle bikes can be hired on any day from 5am to 10pm from self-service bike stations around the CBD and inner Brisbane and after the purchase of a subscription are free for the first 30 minutes of any journey.