Iconic Canadian group The Tea Party’s frontman, Jeff Martin, is an Australian Ambassador for Royal Enfield and owns a Classic 500. With Jeff now based in Byron Bay, and the full band set to return to Australian shores for a tour later this year, we caught up with Jeff, who delivered us his list of the best destinations to visit in Australia on your motorbike.
Perth: Midland – Toodyay
A good run is to meet-up in Midland and head to Toodyay via the Toodyay Rd. Take a left onto O’Brien Rd which becomes Clenton Rd. Have a rest and pay your respects to the King of the Mountain at the ‘Peter Brock’ Memorial. Then take a right onto Berry road then left back onto Toodyay Rd for the run into Toodyay. Approximate time is 1.10 min. Alternately, the run up from Fremantle to Hilary’s takes in the beautiful sights of the Indian Ocean.
When in Adelaide there’s a good run out to the National Motor Museum in Birdwood. It’s about an hour out of the city and the route takes in some great roads. Take the Lower NE Rd (A11) until it intersects with the NE Rd (B10). Take a right and just follow this road all the way to Birdwood. The NE Rd changes to the Torrens Valley Rd at one point, but it’s the same road all the way through. You can make a round trip out of it and head back via Mount Torrens via the Onkaparinga Valley Rd (B34) and Mount Barker road (B33). Each route takes about the same amount of time at around an hour or so.
There are a number of great rides out of Melbourne, but most require a fair bit of highway time to reach them. If you’re hard pressed for time, there’s nothing better than just going for a cruise down south on Beach Rd, then onto the Nepean Hwy at Mordialloc, then just keep heading south to Mornington, and onto the Esplanade. If time permits, push onto Arthur’s Seat, it takes a bit longer but the road is really great and the view from the top is said to be amazing. The full run to Arthurs Seat can take around two hours, with Mornington at around 1.5 hours from Melbourne.
To escape the the hustle and bustle of the city, you can head south to the Royal National Park via the Princes Hwy, then left onto Farnell and the Sir Bertram Stevens / Lady Wakehurst Drives, all the way through to Stawell Tops. There are a few coffee stops in the area and the views are simply second to none. It takes about 1.5 hours depending on your start point and traffic.
Living in the Byron hinterland, I have become so enamored with the slow, winding ride of the enchanting roads throughout the area. There are many places to stop and take in the scenery, and so many beautiful roads to ride – whether it be rainforests, or undulating country side, there is always the guarantee of a magical experience. Coolamon Scenic Drive through to the Crystal Castle, or to the local town of Federal for lunch, and take the back road to Mullumbimby. Never disappoints.
Cairns really only has a couple of options within easy reach of the city i.e. depending on the mood, it’s either the coastal run along the Cook Hwy to Port Douglas or up into the Table Lands to Mareeba via Kuranda. Either run is roughly an hour out of Cairns and both offer stunning scenery and plenty of coffee and photo opps.
The Tea Party are touring Australia in October and November, celebrating 20 years of their classic album Transmission. They’ll be performing the album in its entirety alongside other favourites – and along the way they’ll be visiting Tasmania for the first time since the 1990s. You can jump on your bikes and catch them here:
Thursday 2 November, Thebarton Theatre, Adelaide
Friday 3 November, The Odeon Theatre, Hobart
Saturday 4 November, The Forum, Melbourne
Thursday 9 November, The Tivoli Theatre, Brisbane
Friday 10 November, The Enmore, Sydney
Pics by http://www.arterium.net/