west coast wilderness trail itinerary

4 Days

139km

Highlights

  • Pristine wilderness
  • Historic byways
  • Iconic attractions en route

Proximity

Grade 2-3

Easy to Intermediate

Discover the wild West Coast as you journey from rugged coastline to alpine foothills on this 4-day West Coast Wilderness Cycle Trail itinerary.

Day 1: Greymouth to Kumara, 30km

West Coast
West Coast Wilderness Cycle Trail, West Coast

By Camilla Rutherford

Travel the West Coast Wilderness trail from the heart of Greymouth, along the Grey River to the rugged shoreline of the mighty West Coast. Ride past deserted sand dunes and tidal lagoons before meeting the expanse of the Taramakau River. From here, the trail turns inland toward the tiny gold mining town of Kumara.

Accommodation: Theatre Royal Hotel, Kumara

Day 2: Kumara to Cowboy Paradise, 37km

West Coast
Kumara, West Coast

By Camilla Rutherford

From Kumara climb gradually upwards to the Kawhaka Pass (317m). This section is rich with history from gold rush remnants to old logging trams. At the Waitaki Reserve, the trail descends through ancient podacarp forests and across a vast suspension bridge before finishing at the replica Wild West town of Cowboy Paradise.

Accommodation: Cowboy Paradise 

Day 3: Cowboy Paradise to Hokitika, 36km

West Coast
Kapitea Reservoir , West Coast

By Camilla Rutherford

Day 3 begins gently as you follow the Arahura River through lush native forests and open paddocks to Pyramid Hill. Here the trail travels upwards for a short time before arriving at beautiful Lake Kaniere a favourite with holiday makers. The lake gives way to the historic Kaniere Water Race and peaceful country roads, leading you on towards Hokitika, the wild food capital of New Zealand.

Accommodation: Hokitika

Day 4: Hokitika to Ross, 36km

West Coast
West Coast Wilderness Cycle Trail, West Coast

By Camilla Rutherford

From Hokitika the trail follows a mix of new cycleway and historic tramline to the West Coast Treetops Walk. Stop to enjoy a coffee and stretch your legs amongst New Zealand’s tallest trees. The final section is complete with mountain vistas, disused rail routes and a tidal lagoon. Your journey ends at the historic goldfields of Ross.

Accommodation: Ross

Take a closer look at key points on the map below

Where to next?

West Coast Wilderness Trail →

Hokitika →

Greymouth →

Westport →