8 Great Cycle Trails


MCD lists 8 awesome cycle trails around New Zealand for casual to experienced riders

The Old Ghost Road Trail, West Coast

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The Old Ghost Road on the West Coast is earning a reputation as one of the premier backcountry mountain biking routes in the world.

Spanning 85km, the trail takes riders on an adventure that follows the paths taken by miners and passes through the ghost towns left behind by several mining operations.

Best suited to experienced riders.

Hauraki Rail Trail, Coromandel

The Hauraki Rail Trail in Coromandel offers something for everyone, with short day trips through to longer 21km and 33km tracks.

The trail makes use of the railway corridor, which creates a flat, wide, and smooth trail for easy and enjoyable riding.

With the track running south from Miranda to Thames and then onto Paeroa before branching to either Waihi or Te Aroha, there’s plenty to see and do along the way.

Alps 2 Ocean Trail, Canterbury

Canterbury’s Alps 2 Ocean Trail is divided into eight sections taking riders through some of New Zealand’s most stunning scenery, from beautiful braided rivers to tussock-covered highlands and turquoise hydro lakes.

The trail starts at Aoraki/Mt Cook and finishes at Oamaru.

There are plenty of great activities and places to stay along the way, making it a great ride to plan over several days.

Te Ara I Whiti (the Lightpath), Auckland

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Opened in 2015, the magenta pink Lightpath in Auckland takes riders and walkers from Upper Queen Street across the motorway via a stunning new bridge and continues on the old Nelson Street motorway off-ramp.

The path features interactive lights, a bold magenta surface, and Maori designs as well as a drinking station to refill water bottles.

The Timber Trail, Waikato

Located in the Pureroa Forest Park in the Waikato, the Timber Trail follows the path of old logging roads and tramlines.

The two-day cycle track runs 87km and is surrounded by native forest and beautiful bush.

The trail begins near the Pureroa Visitor Centre and ends at Ongarue with a campground mid-way at Piropiro Flats. 

Te Ara Tahuna Estuary, Auckland

The Te Ara Tahua Estuary pathway in Orewa, North Auckland, is easily accessed from Western Reserve and is one of the most popular off-road paths in Auckland.

The 7.5km route is easy to ride or walk and great for plant and bird spotting.

Te Ara Ahi (Thermal by bike), Rotorua 

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Running between Rotorua and the Waikite Valley, the Te Ara Ahi cycle track offers around 50km of cycle trails through a thermal wonderland of steaming vents, bubbling mud pools, and spectacular geysers.

Other unique features along the trail include the Lake Okaro restoration project, Rainbow Mountain, Te Ranga Hot Pools, and the Waikite Geothermal Field.

Queen Charlotte Track, Marlborough

The 70km Queen Charlotte Track stretches from Ship Cove to Anakiwa and winds its way through lush coastal forest and around beautiful bays offering stunning views of both Queen Charlotte and Kenepuru Sounds

. Enjoy the local hospitality of cafes, campsites, and luxury lodges along the way.

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