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19° & SUNNY ON FRIDAY 19 APRIL IN AUCKLAND
TRAVEL & LEISURE

A Cyclist's Guide to Getting Out of Auckland

Look beyond the city limits for your next weekend adventure — these quality cycling experiences are accessible by car, train, ferry and even seaplane.
By Stephen Heard
March 21, 2019
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A Cyclist's Guide to Getting Out of Auckland

Look beyond the city limits for your next weekend adventure — these quality cycling experiences are accessible by car, train, ferry and even seaplane.
By Stephen Heard
March 21, 2019
  shares

in partnership with

While riding in Auckland CBD can be an adventure in itself, there are several quality cycling experiences beyond the city limits that come with the bonus of fresh air and picture-perfect views. You don't need superhuman legs to get there; most routes can be accessed by car, train, ferry and even seaplane, allowing you to explore more on your weekends. And better yet, there are ways to help you travel further, in less time, and with less physical exertion. Together with Bosch eBike Systems, here's a cyclist's guide to getting out of Auckland.

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OPTION ONE: JUMP IN THE CAR FOR A CROSS-COUNTRY RIDE

The Pou Herenga Tai Twin Coast Cycle Trail is around three hours drive from Auckland in the winterless north. As New Zealand's only cross-country cycle trail, from the Bay of Islands to Hokianga Harbour the journey offers journeys through heritage sites rich with Māori and colonial history, through wetlands, native forest and farmland. A journey off the beaten path will give access to sleepy towns that roll on to crystal clear inlets and more than 144 undeveloped islands up for exploration.

WHERE TO STAY

The Duke of Marlborough is a pristine destination to unwind at the end of your journey — the ocean practically laps into its foyer. Erected in 1827, the property originally operated as an unlicensed grog shop, later becoming the first licensed hotel in the country. It still retains its vintage appeal; the rooms are grand with high ceilings, the walls are covered with marine memorabilia and the solid furniture certainly has a story to tell.

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OPTION TWO: TAKE THE TRAIN TO NATIONAL PARK

The country's longest running passenger service, the Northern Explorer, makes its way from Auckland to Wellington. With enough luggage space to fit your two wheeler, you may as well head straight for National Park. One of the great rides on Nga Haerenga's New Zealand Cycle Trail, the Great Lake Trail is an all-seasons track which stars lush forest, waterfalls, beaches and a volcanic gorge. The 71-kilometre trail is divided into three sections, all easily accessible from Kinloch and Taupo. A boat shuttle links several sections of the track, and provides pick-ups and drop-offs to bays around the lake.

WHERE TO STAY

Kinloch is the perfect base for the Great Lake Trail. The lakeside village is within arm's reach to the Headland and Orakau trails and the K2K and W2K routes, with shuttles readily available for the Waihaha and Waihora sections in the neighbouring corner of the lake. The Whakaipo Lodge is a bed and breakfast situated close to many of the trails with hosts well versed in the art of cycling.

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OPTION THREE: CROSS HAURAKI GULF FOR GREAT BARRIER ISLAND

A four-hour boat ride from Auckland, or a 30-minute hop in a seaplane, Great Barrier Island offers several untouched cycling experiences. While several of the tramping trails are off limits to cyclists, mountain biking is permitted on Forest Road from Whangaparapara to Port FitzRoy. The 13-kilometre (one way) track falls under the advanced category, though provides an array of beautiful bush and mountain views. With little traffic, the predominantly unsealed roads can also provide a decent adventure. There's also a designated 25-kilometre ride from Okupu to the Ahumata cliffs worth checking out.

WHERE TO STAY

The Akapoua Bay Campground is popular spot near Port FitzRoy, with easy access to many of the island's walking tracks. You'll need to bring some supplies for this journey. The Department of Conservation campsite has basic facilities, including water, cold showers, toilets and a food-preparation shelter.

For more cycling adventures check out our list of Five Biking Trails Outside of Auckland to Try This Winter.

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Looking to travel further, in less time and with less physical exertion? Learn more about Bosch eBike Systems here.

Published on March 21, 2019 by Stephen Heard

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