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TRAVEL & LEISURE

A Cyclist's Guide to Getting Out of Wellington

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

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

in partnership with

While riding in Wellington 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 and ferry, 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 Wellington.

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OPTION ONE: JUMP IN THE CAR FOR THE REMUTAKA RANGES

One of the great rides on Nga Haerenga's New Zealand Cycle Trail, and just a short drive from the city, the Remutaka Ranges Trail starts on the edge of Wellington Harbour before navigating its way through Petone, past the Hutt Valley, through native woodlands and back along the coast. On the way you'll pass through historic tunnels and bridges, geological formations and rugged coastline. You should set aside between two to four days to complete the entire trip. And if you're worried about the return trip, there's a car relocation service which can help get your car to the other end of the trail. If you're feeling thirsty, a quick detour will see you land in the heart of Wairarapa wine country.

WHERE TO STAY

Te Rakau is in the perfect location for the end of day one on the Rimutaka trail. A peaceful retreat in wetlands, the offers two self-contained converted railway carriages. Bird spotters will also be in their element — expect to spot tui, kereru, shinning cuckoo and grey heron.

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OPTION TWO: TAKE THE TRAIN TO WAIRARAPA

If flat and quiet country roads are more your thing then head straight for Wairarapa. The Wairarapa train service will drop you and you bike directly in the thick of wine country, meaning if you'd like to indulge in a few along the way, then it's a stress-free trip back to the city. Vineyards in Martinborough are close together, and wine maps can be downloaded so you can start planning your route.

WHERE TO STAY

The Martinborough Hotel is located right in the heart of the region — there are at least 20 wineries within biking distance. Built in 1882, the property has been restored to its former glory and all rooms come with views across the village and gardens.

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Rob Suisted

OPTION THREE: CROSS COOK STRAIGHT FOR THE QUEEN CHARLOTTE TRACK

This one is absolutely worth the ferry ticket. Smack bang in the middle of the Marlborough Sounds, The Queen Charlotte Track is a pristine 71-kilometre (one way) track that will satisfy adventure lovers. Starting at the historic Ship Cove, which is only accessible by boat, the track passes by secluded bays and through lush untouched coastal bush. If the full slog sounds intimidating, it can be completed in short sections, and those with a limited amount of time can arrange for an afternoon pick-up by water taxi. You can also expect the odd wildlife encounter from tui, fantails and flightless weka as you sit down to soak up the environment.

WHERE TO STAY

Furneaux Lodge is the first official stop when heading from Ship Cove — stop by to unwind with a drink or something more substantial from the onsite restaurant. Found in Endeavour Inlet, the historic lodge serves as the ideal pitstop when tackling the trail or as a base in one of the property's cabins, cottages or suites to explore the area, whether you're into kayaking, swimming, fishing or dolphin watching. We recommend grabbing a drink from the bar and assembling on the expansive lawn.

For more cycling adventures check out our list of Five Biking Trails Outside of Wellington 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 Rachel Stone

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