New Zealand Cycle Trails - explore the 23 trails

New Zealand’s national cycle trail network consists of 23 world-class trails showcasing the spectacular landscapes of the country.

The trails are spread across New Zealand’s two islands and cater for a range of cycling abilities from beginners and families to more experienced and competitive riders.

The gentle routes include cycle rides along the scenic coastal trails, routes traversing historic old coach roads, vineyards and local heritage sites and also trails exploring rural New Zealand along quiet country roads. Experienced cyclists might try riding more remote off-road trails leading deep into the great outdoors. Each trail rewards riders with spectacular views along the way.

Cycling is one of the best ways to truly appreciate New Zealand’s breathtaking landscapes and an affordable daily hire rate makes this option accessible for all.

Below Becky from Britz Campervans's (proud sponsor of New Zealand Cycle trails), provides suggestions for scenic and easily accessible day and half day cycling trails in New Zealand:

North Island

The Hauraki Rail Trail is the easiest riding trail in New Zealand, with various stages allowing for comfortable three different day Rail Trail cycle rides. Showcasing some of the best scenery New Zealand has to offer and rich in pioneering history, highlights include the stunning Karangahake Gorge, an historic gold mining town, and luxurious mineral spas. 

The Waikato River Trails offer off-road mountain biking experiences with options for all abilities. Following New Zealand's longest river, the mighty Waikato, it offers both walking and cycling experiences through native and exotic forest, wetlands, historic landmarks, intriguing volcanic rock formations and expansive lake and river views. 

The Hawke's Bay Trails comprises of over 180km of pathways stretching over the Heretaunga Plains, meandering along the coast between the twin cities of Napier and Hastings. The network has three distinct cycling experiences, the Landscape Ride exploring picturesque coastal communities, the Water Ride which is flat, easy and perfect for families with panoramic views of the Pacific Ocean and the relaxed Wineries Ride passing by numerous award-winning wineries that with plenty of places to stop and rest along the way. 

South Island

The Otago Central Rail Trail is named after the original railway line, built between 1891 and 1907, and is considered to be New Zealand’s original ‘Great Ride’. Steeped in history, the Rail Trail offers a 150km scenic and historical journey into the Central Otago heartland. This is big sky country where cyclists will traverse ever-changing mountainous, dry and rocky landscapes, high country sheep stations, spectacular river gorges, tunnels and viaducts. 

The Queenstown Trails is set within the Wakatipu Basin of the Otago region meanders through the Gibbston wine area, the historic goldmining town of Arrowtown and the stunning landscapes of Lake Hayes, Frankton and Queenstown. Riders will enjoy discovering hidden ruins, amazing architecture and historic bridges. There are plenty of reasons to stop along the way, from a cheeky wine tasting at world-class vineyards to a thrilling bungy jump at the Kawarau! 

The Tasman’s Great Taste Trail starts in Nelson and offers panoramic coastal views over Tasman Bay, Waimea Estuary and the Western Mountain Ranges. Riders pass over boardwalks along the edge of the Waimea Estuary home to a range of internationally significant bird species including the White Heron and Royal Spoonbill. 

Bikes Hire

A great way to explore the trails and New Zealand is offered by Britz Campervan - now offering customers the chance to swap four wheels for two and explore New Zealand’s stunning landscapes with Britz Bikes. Britz’s bicycle hire options encourage holidaymakers to get off the beaten track to meet locals, learn about the country’s culture and enjoy iconic scenery using pedal power. All the essentials, from helmets to pumps, are included in the great value hire price and are available to pick up in Auckland and Christchurch.

Cyclists can choose from different types of bikes according to their requirements from the Hybrid body, great for country trails and town riding, to the Britz mountain bike for some serious off-road riding. There’s also no need to worry about bikes taking up space and creating clutter in the campervan as they are securely locked and transported in Britz’s customised bike racks fitted to the back of the vehicle upon hire.

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