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Australia's Best Regional Sports Events

4 Nov 2022

Australians are famous for their love of sport. Look beyond our big city stadiums though, and you'll find some curious events you might not have heard of.

Australias best regional sporting events tas woodchop

The Tas Carnivals are a brilliant Christmas tradition. Credit: Tas Carnivals

While many of the country’s marquee sporting events happen in the capitals - the Australian Open tennis and Boxing Day Test Match in Melbourne come to mind - there are plenty of awesome regional sporting events to consider.

From weird and wacky country races to more traditional favourites like the Bathurst 1000, many of the best sporting events in Australia happen outside the city. Check out this list of some of our favourites!

Australia's Favourite Regional Sports Events

Australias best regional sporting events banner

Run, paddle, chop! There's lots do see and do this summer.

1. The Herald Sun Tour - VIC

2. Bathurst 1000 - NSW

3. Tasmanian Christmas Carnival Series - TAS 

4. Massive Murray Paddle - VIC

5. Alice Springs Masters Games - NT 

6. Santos Tour Down Under  - SA

Herald Sun Tour

Australias best regional sporting events herald sun tour

The last winner of the Herald Sun Tour, Australian pro Jai Hindley. Credit: Herald Sun Tour

The Herald Sun Tour is a professional bicycle race held around Melbourne and regional Victoria. 

First held in 1952, the 'Sun Tour' is the oldest professional bike race in Australia and is usually held over five stages every February.

Australias best regional sporting events herald sun tour cycling

There a loads of chances to get involved. Credit: Herald Sun Tour 

Although not classified a ‘World Tour’ event by the UCI, the Sun Tour is still a major international race that attracts some of the world’s best riders, and generates significant media exposure for the regional towns involved. 

Nagambie, Mitchelton, Falls Creek, Bright and Mount Buller frequently provide the backdrop for the race, which often culminates in a sprint race around the streets of Melbourne.

Bathurst 1000

Australias best regional sporting events

The famous Mount Panorama.

Love the V8s? 

If so, there’s a good chance Bathurst is your favourite sporting event of the year.

Held at the famous Mount Panorama circuit since 1963, the Bathurst 1000 is a 1,000km race for V8 production cars held every October.

Australias best regional sporting events bathurst

The real race that stops a nation - of revheads. Credit:

Widely regarded as the most important motorsport event in Australia, the Bathurst 1000 remains one of the best regional sporting events in Australia and brings thousands of visitors to this otherwise sleepy regional town. 

Tasmanian Christmas Carnival Series

Australias best regional sporting events burnie gift

The Burnie Gift is one of several blue-ribbon races that take place over the holiday period in Tasmania. Credit: Tas Carnivals

If you’re planning a Tassie Christmas, why wouldn’t you get involved in the Tasmanian Christmas Carnival Series?

The Tasmanian Christmas Carnivals are a unique series of sporting carnivals that combine the unlikely combination of scratch running, velodrome cycling and woodchopping held in regional towns in Northern Tasmania.

Australias best regional sporting events tas carnivals

The velodrome season in Tasmania attract's Australia's best. Credit: Tas Carnivals 

Held since the 1880s, the carnivals begin right after Christmas Day. The first carnival is at Rosebery on Tasmania’s West Coast, and the series wraps up in St Helens on Tasmania’s East Coast. 

Massive Murray Paddle 

Australias best regional sporting events murray paddle

The Massive Murray Paddle is a huge community event for the RIverland.

The Massive Murray Paddle is one of the best sporting events in regional Australia. Formerly known as the Red Cross Murray Marathon, the event began in 1969 when ten friends decided to raise money for the Australian Red Cross. 

The 5-day 404km flatwater race starts in Yarrawonga and finishes in Swan Hill.There are a number of lead-up events such as the Clarence 100, Hawkesbury Canoe Classic, Echuca Mini, Barwon Mini and the Riverland Paddling Marathon. 

Alice Springs Masters Games 

Australias best regional sporting events alice springs masters

You can be part of next year's Friendly Games. Credit: Alice Springs Masters Games

If you’re planning a trip to Alice Springs in 2023, consider being there in October for the Alice Springs Masters Games, one of the best regional sporting events in the Northern Territory!

Established in 1986, the Alice Springs Masters Games is the longest-running Masters Games in Australia. Featuring athletes from around Australia, competitions in all age groups include, athletics, BMX, road cycling, swimming, triathlon, and duathlon.

Santos Tour Down Under

Australias best regional sporting events tour down under

Follow the world's best cycling teams into the Adelaide Hills. Credit:SATC

If you’re planning a trip to South Australia in summer, then come see some the Santos Tour Down Under.

The Santos Tour Down Under is the southern hemisphere’s largest UCI World Tour bike race the occurs in Adlaide every January. The race starts and finishes in Adelaide but takes both the men's and women's race through some of the most iconic regions in South Australia.

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