Southern Highlands — Exploring the Backcountry

This sensational 123km picturesque route traverses idyllic Australian countryside with quiet roads cutting through paddocks or surrounded by towering trees. There is no shortage of scenery and serenity on this on-road cycling route through the Southern Highlands region. If you want to experience and conquer the best of the Southern Highlands on two wheels then this route is for you.
Course Map and Elevation/Gradient Profile
Key Features of the Route
  • Mostly undulating with some long flat sections and just two traffic lights over 123km.
  • Some roaring descents — we reached a max speed of 85.7km/h on one of the downhills.
  • Some long climbs but none with very steep gradient (see gradient profile above).
  • Road quality is good — paved but not perfectly smooth as is common to country roads in NSW. The roads are well suited to road bikes.
  • Most of the route covers quiet, extremely low-traffic roads. There are two highway sections — the Illawarra Hwy through both Moss Vale (limited shoulder) and Robertson (considerable shoulder).
  • Total elevation gain of 1,694m. If you skip Old South Rd you will cut out some of the vertical ascent.
  • Time to complete — our group of eight finished the route at 25.6km/h in a ride time of 4hr 46mins.
  • Stop off points include: Fitzroy Falls, the half-way mark – Burrawang (good cafe called Burrawang General Store, est. 1867) and the town of Robertson.
  • Do not miss Tourist Rd.
  • Google map with directions available here.
  • Alternative route — you can start and finish in Bowral and may wish to consider climbing Mt Gibraltar (168m vertical over 3.4km), which has an awesome view of Bowral from the summit. Highly recommended, especially if your legs still require a workout.
Tourist Rd all to ourselves.
Illawarra Highway — limited shoulder space.
Old South Rd — at times quite hilly.
Leave early and you can expect to come across scenes like this one.
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