While it’s famously known for the arts, Melbourne’s beautiful open spaces and welcoming communities make it a great city to try a new sport, get fit, and improve wellbeing.
Since physical activity is well-known as being one of the best ways to maintain your health, minimise stress, and meet new friends – finding something you enjoy will benefit you in more ways than one.
We have created a list of activities and locations to get fit in Melbourne, many of which are outdoors, inexpensive, and a lot of fun.
With endless flat tracks exploring native bushland, Melbourne is known as one of Australia’s best-running cities.
The Tan Track
Circling the Botanical Gardens (locally referred to as The Tan) is this scenic 3.8 km jogging loop. Bustling with strollers, walkers and runners most Saturday mornings, this popular route offers epic views of the city beside gorgeous, lush greenery.
Capital City Loop
Join a local group or event!
One of the best ways to commit to your running goals is by joining a local group. There are heaps of welcoming running groups throughout Melbourne catering to all levels of fitness.
Tanaka Running Club offers groups offer morning runs at a social pace (meaning chats are encouraged and they take plenty of breaks!). Join them on Wednesdays, Carlton, and enjoy a coffee together afterwards.
Training for an event, such as the famous Melbourne Marathon, helps to build your motivation (plus the atmosphere is unforgettable!) One of Australia’s best-known running events, the Melbourne Marathon has distances including 5km, 10km, 21.1km or the full 42km.
Bikes are the perfect way to explore a city and its surroundings. Melbourne has a thriving cycling community, both for on-road bikes, gravel bikes and mountain biking. These communities are full of welcoming, helpful people who support new riders of any ability.
The Bicycle Network
The Bicycle Network is a not-for-profit organisation that hosts programs, events and education programs on how to navigate your city safety.
Ceres Bike Shed
Located in the beautiful Ceres Community Garden, the Ceres Bike Shed in Brunswick collects donated bikes to fix and resell. Run by volunteers, they host a ‘fix your own bike day’ on Thursdays, happily assisting you with any gear-related questions whilst supporting the circular economy.
With accessible public transport that takes you to some of the most beautiful locations in the state, it can be super easy to escape into nature for a hike. Take Melbourne’s V-Line to a range of spots for either a day trip or a weekend adventure.
The Dandenong Ranges
Take the train out to the Dandenong National Park, about an hour on the train or a 30-minute drive. Tackle the 1,000 steps of the Kokoda Walk or take a more relaxed pace through the native forest.
Lerderderg State Park
If you have a car, you can drive one hour North West of Melbourne to Lerderderg State Park’s rocky trails. Choose to hike part of the Great Dividing Trail or explore the river’s edge along Mackenzies Flat Picnic Area.
Other ways to get fit
If you’re interested in something different, there are classes around Melbourne offering affordable discounts for students.
Karate offers you a whole-body workout, and Inner Melbourne now has a full-time Japanese karate dojo. Sensei Sandra teaches dedicated adult classes and affordable tuition Monday to Friday, plus offers discounts for students. The initial joining fee is usually $90, but waived for those who study full-time!
The dojo is easy to access along public transport, particularly if you’re commuting from any of the major university campuses.
While the focus of Yoga is mindfulness, the gentle movements slowly build strength and flexibility throughout the body. There are a wide variety of practices to try depending on what type of experience you prefer, ranging from calming stretches to fast-paced vinyasa flow.
I Am That studio in Collingwood offers Community Pricing, meaning students can attend a $9 yoga class during off-peak hours.
Staying active can mean more than just exercise in Melbourne! With so many diverse options and communities to choose from, you are guaranteed to find something which allows you to meet new friends or develop a new skill, all while feeling fit and healthy.
Get active, go places with Public Transport Victoria
Explore Melbourne’s many outdoor fitness locations without the hassle of driving. Public Transport Victoria (PTV) connects you to running tracks, cycling paths, and so much more, making your journey to fitness smooth and sustainable. Plan your next active adventure now!