Sunshine Coast has many epic dirt bike riding spots, and so we’re going to show you the best places near the Sunny Coast to explore with your trail bike.
Best Places to Ride a Dirt Bike in the Sunshine Coast
In writing this guide to dirt bike trails on the Sunshine Coast, we sought local knowledge from the experts. Essentially, the following advice is recommended:
- You need to have a registered dirt bike to ride anywhere except for private property and an MX track on the Sunshine Coast.
- Kids have multiple MX clubs available to join where the land is flat. It’s simply a matter of picking one and getting them excited by taking them to the dirt bike stores.
- You’ll have to wear your full protective gear everywhere you ride. Some of the tracks can be gnarly, technical and hilly. If you sustain a crash here and injure yourself, it’s hard for the SES to retrieve you. We would recommend a neck brace for most tracks.
- Above all else, be respectful! Don’t make unnecessary noise or ride off the formed tracks, or just generally make a nuisance. There are other users on these tracks like horse riders, mountain bike riders and walkers. Rangers would love to get these following tracks shut down but for now, we really need to be on our best behaviour.
Now that we’ve gone over the induction, let’s get into it!
Here are the best Sunshine Coast dirt bike riding tracks:
1. Glasshouse Mountains
The Glasshouse Mountains is exactly what we all desire. Forest tracks, some technically challenging sections and lots of shade cover for those hot days.
Did you know that the most popular place to ride a dirt bike in all of Queensland happens to be the Glasshouse Mountains? It probably is due to the close proximity to Brisbane and many sunny days in QLD.
The Glasshouse Mountains National Park is the place where you’ll want to unleash the throttle. Dirt bikes are more than welcome here in the National Park, though dogs aren’t allowed.
Getting to the Glasshouse Mountains is easy. From Brisbane it’s only just over an hour and from the Sunshine Coast, only 15 to 45 minutes depending on where you’re coming from.
The dirt bike tracks on the Glasshouse Mountains become very busy on weekends with 4×4 enthusiasts and many dirt bike riders. For that reason, try to go for weekday rides and ideally in the cooler months.
2. Beerburrum and Beerwah State Forests
Beerburrum and Beerwah State Forests are literally right next door to the Glasshouse Mountains National Park. Most riders choose to ride both the state forests and the national park on the same day, given their close proximity.
Much like any other places in Queensland, your dirt bike will need to be registered and you’ll need to be licenced. If you don’t have full registration then you can join one of the many dirt bike tours on the Sunshine Coast.
A lot of these are forestry and powerline roads. Some technical terrain is also there so you’ll need to have some decent level of riding ability.
You can also camp in the Beerburrum/Beerwah State Forests, or in the local town of Landsborough. This place is good for adventure motorcycles as well since the terrain is a bit less technical.
3. Mapleton National Park
Go west of Nambour and you’ll come across Mapleton National Park. The terrain here is a mixture of open forest runs and tight technical terrain, paired with some really rocky sections. Unless you’ve got some adventure riding experience, then I’d avoid adventuring here on your own as it’s a little away from help if you get stuck.
Dirt bikes are welcome here and you can camp here with a permit at the Gheerully Camping area. As with all national parks in QLD, your trail bike will need to be registered and with knobby tyres. Big and heavy adventure motorcycles may struggle with some of the terrains encountered here.
4. Yarraman State Forest
Yarraman State Forest isn’t that popular with dirt bikes though 4wd enthusiasts love this place for exploring and camping. The map show some great spots to really open the throttle.
You can go camping in the Yarraman State Forest as well as explore the tracks on a day ride. Essentially, leave the Sunshine Coast or Brisbane early morning and return before the sun goes down.
Permits not required unless:
- You are in an organized group ride
- Are racing in a competitive event
- Are part of a commercial activity
For most riders, you’ll do just fine with a fully registered dirt bike.
5. Tuan State Forest
Right – this place is going to require a bit of a trip to get there. Getting to Tuan State Forest requires driving north past Noosa and Gympie. It’s about 20 minutes south of Maryborough, however it’s worth the trip.
This place is massive and a mecca for 4×4 and dirt bike riders. National Parks QLD permits dirt bike riders to ride within Tuan State Forest provided you stick to the tracks and your bike is fully registered with Main Roads QLD.
6. Noosa North Shore
If you get the ferry from Tewantin then you can go straight on to Noosa North Shore and have miles of uninterrupted beaches to cruise along.
Note: You will need a beach access permit for riding. If you want to camp on the beach then you’ll need a separate permit for this too, though you can’t simply pull up anywhere and camp freely. There are only a couple of marked campgrounds namely at Rainbow Beach.
Follow the beach along for its entire length (80km) and you’ll come to the next ferry at River Heads near Hervey Bay. This can then take you on to Fraser Island which lands at the famous Inskip Point (it’s famous for all the city slickers getting bogged in their 20PSI 4x4s).
7. Vernon State Forest
Vernon State Forest is open for dirt bikes. There are shared tracks that you’ll need to share with mountain bike riders, so be respectful and give them plenty of space when passing. Dogs are also welcome here though camping is banned.
There are two entrances here but choose the right one. Toogoom mountain bike entrance isn’t for dirt bikes. You can only choose the Takura Trail entrance.
The Vernon State Forest isn’t big and for most riders, you’ll be bored after a couple of hours of doing the same circuits. This is the type of place you head to on a multi-day adventure.
8. Fraser Island
A common question we get is: Are dirt bikes allowed on Fraser Island? Because there seem to be mixed feelings at this time.
Answer: Yes – Dirt bikes are allowed to be ridden on Fraser Island provided they are fully registered and the rider is licenced. You can’t bring unregistered dirt bikes on to the island. Riding is permitted on the beach and on all formed road tracks, but are banned from K’gari (Fraser Island) Great Walk as this is a designated walking track.
The best dirt bike to bring is one that can power your dirt bike through the soft sand. Avoid the temptation to bring a heavy adventure bike as it will be hard to pick up. As a guide, the KTM 450 is a good choice for Fraser Island.
Fraser Island makes for an epic 4×4 and dirt bike adventure and a chance to really get away from it all. We recommend that pack a decent amount of gear for self-sufficiency although there is accommodation for dirt bike riders on the island. There is also fuel on Fraser Island so you won’t need to bring extra jerry cans for your dirt bike.
There are talks of closing Fraser Island to dirt bikes given the damage that has been caused to some tracks by irresponsible riders. At this time though, it still remains open and the best season to visit is winter. Avoid school holidays and public holidays as Fraser Island becomes extremely busy.
Remember you can ride from Noosa to Fraser Island via the North Shore beach route after catching the 5 minute ferry trip. This means you can avoid the Bruce Highway and going via Gympie.
9. Glen Echo Park
For a fully setup dirt bike and camping park, it’s hard to go past Glen Echo Park. For a long time, it’s been the ultimate Sunshine Coast and Brisbane weekend getaway spot for dirt bike riders with plenty of positive reviews.
Getting there requires going about 30 minutes past Gympie. This certainly isn’t a day trip place and with both miles of epic tracks and camping on offer, why would you want to leave right away?
Kids and teenagers are welcome to bring their unregistered dirt bikes to Glen Echo Park. In fact, there are tracks set aside for them.
The terrain here is mixed for enduro riders. For MX riders, there are four natural terrain tracks plus several man-made jumps and tabletops for practising.
Quad bikes are welcome but there is a 125cc limit. This is one of the few places on the Sunshine Coast to ride a quad bike legally.
10. Parklands MX Park
For a good day trip, bring the kids and head up to the Parklands Motocross Park at Kenilworth. There are a range of tracks to choose from and the reviews on this place are super strong.
This place is open 7 days per week and we recommend weekday riding. On weekends it can be very busy with loads of riders coming up from the Sunshine Coast and Brisbane to open the throttle.
Kids are very welcome here. Again, this place permits unregistered dirt bike riding unlike most places on the Sunshine Coast. If your MX bike can’t get rego, then get yourself a cheap dirt bike trailer and go here.
Out this way you also have Borumba Dam and Imbil State Forest which is open to dirt bike riders. Definitely worth checking out!
11. Phoenix Creek Motocross Park
If you’re already heading up to Yarraman State Forest for some riding, spending a day and night at the Phoenix Creek Motocross Park is well worth it. The pricing here is very affordable and the hosts are super nice.
With several motocross parks on the Sunshine Coast, what sets this place apart? Well, it’s family orientated. Phoenix Creek is for families only and you can only ride with kids. Essentially, you won’t get the characters that you’ll find at other MX parks in south-east Queensland.
While some would say their rules are too tight, we believe they have built a unique park which is perfect for kids to enjoy. 5 year olds don’t want to be intimidated by a huge dirt bike flying past at 70km/h.
If you want hardcore, this isn’t the place for you. If you want want safety with a focus on families simply enjoying the sport with nothing to prove to anyone, then you’ve definitely found the spot. The vibes here are relaxing.
They are open every day during Queensland school holidays and every weekend, weather permitting. We would put these guys higher on the list though they are restricted to families only. Certainly the best family dirt bike park anywhere near the Sunshine Coast.
12. Coolum MX Track
Looking for something more local? Then Coolum has its own Motocross track and club. Unfortunately, the track here is sandy unlike most other MX tracks across the state.
As part of the Sunshine Coast motorcycle club, they cater for motocross and enduro riders young and old. This is a great place to meet some like-minded friends to head out on weekend trips.
Sunshine Coast riding spots at a glance
We decided to best summarize this list for beginners.
This way, you can read at a glance:
|Place name||Time to get there||Terrain||Popularity|
|Glasshouse Mountains||20 minutes||Hilly||10/10|
|Beerburrum and |
Beerwah State Forests
|Mapleton National Park||35 minutes||Mixed||7/10|
|Yarraman State Forest||45 minutes||Mixed||6/10|
|Tuan State Forest||1.5 hours||Open||5/10|
|Noosa North Shore||20 minutes||Beach||8/10|
|Vernon State Forest||2 hours||Savannah||5/10|
|Fraser Island||2 hours||Beach||9/10|
|Glen Echo Park||30 minutes||Mixed||10/10|
|Parklands MX Park||40 minutes||Mixed||8/10|
|Phoenix Creek MX Park||1.5 hours||Mostly flat||7/10|
|Coolum MX Track||10 minutes||MX track||10/10|
All these places are best ridden with at least one other dirt bike rider for your first time. Also, bring a good adventure bike GPS with you to help find your way back to the car.
Bonus spot: Thought we would add in a bonus spot too. If you go along Kawana Way next to Mooloolah River National Park there is a sandy track that follows the powerlines. You’ve got about 3km worth of loose sand riding here. Just be careful not to crash into the powerlines and look out for other users since 4x4s often go here since it’s located so close to a residential area.
We’ve done our best to come up with this list for local riders as well as those from out of town and interstate. If you’re heading to the Sunshine Coast with your dirt bikes and need some good trails to ride, then we hope this will come in useful.
Fun-fact: Frontaer is based on the Sunshine Coast and we can’t wait to see you out there too!