Top Mountain Biking Trails in New Zealand

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Getting ready to roll? Check out our top trails – just the tip of New Zealand’s epic mountain biking iceberg!

Whakarewarewa Forest

To see why Rotorua is widely rated one of the world’s best mountain biking meccas, look no further than these legendary trails threaded through towering redwoods and lush native bush.

Rotorua
Whakarewarewa Forest, Rotorua

Von Destination Rotorua

Whakarewarewa Forest, known simply as 'The Redwoods', is a mountain biking mecca.

Highlights

  • Excellent single track in forest
  • Shuttle transport for uphill
  • Café, info centre & skills area at start

Proximity

GRADE

Easy- Expert

Rude Rock Track

Pulling in ambitious riders from all over the world, these adrenaline-pumping downhill trails in Queenstown are all the more irresistible for their eye-popping alpine country backdrop.

Queenstown
Coronet Peak, Queenstown

Von Callum Wood

Featuring a wide selection of tracks, including Rude Rock, Coronet Peak is fast becoming a hub of mountain biking in Queenstown.

Highlights

  • Flowing singletrack
  • Sub-alpine terrain
  • Thrilling descent

Proximity

GRADE

Solid Blue Square (4)

Old Ghost Road

New Zealand’s longest single-track is also its ultimate wilderness epic – a multi-day journey in the West Coast following a hard-won route over rugged mountains that realised the abandoned dreams of old gold miners.

West Coast
Old Ghost Road, West Coast

Von Sven Martin

One of New Zealand’s newest self-powered adventures, the Old Ghost Road is an unforgettable challenge for experienced hikers and mountain bikers.

Highlights

  • Wild Mokihinui River
  • Spectacular ridge sections
  • Ghostly gold mining relics

Proximity

GRADE

Advanced

Heaphy Mountain Biking Track

An unforgettable adventure through the remote wonderland of Kahurangi National Park in Nelson, this ride takes in strange and ever-changing landscapes, with the bonus of staying in atmospheric backcountry huts.

Nelson
Heaphy Track, Nelson

Von Sven Martin

A classic ride, this remote and challenging trail traverses New Zealand's second largest national park - Kahurangi.

Highlights

  • Kahurangi National Park
  • Native wildlife
  • Spectacular mountains & rivers

Proximity

GRADE

Advanced

Welcome Rock Trails

Snaking around a high-country hilltop in Southland, a historic water race has been extended by hand to produce a splendid single-track circuit with grand views and charming huts to stay in overnight.

Southland
Welcome Rock Trails, Southland

Von Jay French

Traversing the wild, tussocked highlands of Southland, Welcome Rock Trails are steeped in history and a truly authentic New Zealand experience.

Highlights

  • High Country scenery
  • Historic and modern huts
  • Easy gradients

Proximity

GRADE

Intermediate

The Timber Trail

Luring riders deep into Pureora Forest Park in the heart of the North Island, this mixed-terrain trail features ancient trees, birdlife, thrilling suspension bridges and intriguing timber-milling relics.

Lake Taupo
The Timber Trail, Lake Taupo

Von Sven Martin

Following old logging roads and tramlines, The Timber Trail traverses an exotic forest in the heart of the North Island.

Highlights

  • Ancient forests
  • Rich culture & heritage
  • Thrilling suspension bridges

Proximity

GRADE

Easy - Intermediate

42 Traverse

One of New Zealand’s original mountain-biking must-dos, this descent-heavy cross-country trail follows long-abandoned logging tracks through forest within wheeling distance of Tongariro National Park.

New Zealand
42 Traverse, New Zealand

Von Tongariro River Rafting

The 42 Traverse track takes you on a journey through native forest that is teeming with birdlife - an unforgettable New Zealand experience!

Highlights

  • Volcanic scenery
  • Long, fun descents
  • Unspoilt rivers

Proximity

GRADE

Intermediate

Great Lake Trail

New Zealand’s largest lake backdrops Taupō’s all-season trail offering an irresistible mix of flowing terrain and changing scenes as it sweeps down to the shore and around the lake’s bays and rocky promontories.

Lake Taupo
Great Lake Trail, Lake Taupo

Von Derek Morrison

Endless lake views are your constant companions on this trail.

Highlights

  • Vast lake and mountain views
  • Enchanting forest
  • Fun, flowing trail

Proximity

  • By car: 20 mins from Taupo

GRADE

Intermediate

St James Cycle Trail

Traversing historic St James Station near Hanmer Springs, this challenging high-country trail rewards riders with vistas of soaring peaks, alpine meadows, beech forest, tranquil lakes and crystal clear rivers.

Christchurch - Canterbury
St James Cycle Trail , Christchurch - Canterbury

Von Bevan Triebels

Located 90 minutes from Christchurch, you can easily access one of the best mountain biking tracks in the South Island, St James Cycle Trail.

Christchurch - Canterbury

Christchurch - Canterbury

St James Cycle Trail Information

Highlights

  • Remote wilderness
  • Spectacular alpine scenery
  • Hanmer Springs spa town

Proximity

GRADE

Easy - Advanced

Queen Charlotte Track

One of New Zealand’s original Great Rides, this track traces the bays, hills and ridges of the Marlborough Sounds, with resort stays, boat trips and water sports on offer.

Marlborough
Queen Charlotte Track, Marlborough

Von Sven Martin

Soak in magnificent views of one of New Zealand's most beautiful waterways - Marlborough Sounds - on this epic South Island track.

Highlights

  • Ever-changing vistas
  • Natural & human history
  • Bush camps, homestays & lodges

Proximity

GRADE

Intermediate - Advanced

Flüge finden & buchen

Next on your jounrney

New Zealand's Top Mountain Biking Regions →

Mountain Biking Events in New Zealand →

FAQs on Mountain Biking in New Zealand →