We going on a bike tour on the best trails Central Otago has to offer!
Bike Central Otago's best trails with us!
DAY 1 QUEENSTOWN - CLYDE
Arrive into Queenstown by midday. From the airport we will follow the Kawerau River via vineyards, through a dramatic gorge, past orchards and Lake Dunstan to our destination for the next 4 days. Our accommodation is located in the centre of the small town of Clyde. We'll get sorted with our bikes before a little roam around the neighbourhood. The town has a long history of gold mining with some buildings surviving that era and now lovingly restored to create a historic precinct with art galleries, cafes, bars and boutique shops. Surrounding the town is the Clyde Dam and Lake Dunstan, dramatic hills, and the Clutha River which feeds the many stone fruit orchards and vineyards in the area.We'll dine in a local restaurant before getting an early night ahead of our cycling escapades!Accommodation: Antique Lodge Motel - 4 nights
DAY 2 Cycling Poolburn Gorge -34.5 km
This morning we will be transferred to Auripo where we can ease in to our cycling adventure with a relatively flat Grade 1 ride on the Poolburn Gorge section of the Otago Rail Trail. Amongst the highlights today will be riding through the Raggedy Range that separates the Manukerikia and Ida Valley, across the 37m high Poolburn Viaduct, two tunnels, the trail's longest bridge and of course that epic Central Otago landscape and big sky. We'll take a detour to the cute little historic village of Ophir before cycling down Tiger Hill to the Chatto Creek Tavern. Relax over a well earned refreshment whilst we wait on our vehicle transfer back to Clyde.
DAY 3 Cycling Roxburgh Gorge -44km
Today's exciting adventure is a Grade 1 -2 ride. We will set off from Clyde after breakfast,cycling alongside the Clutha River to Alexandra where we'll stop for a coffee before venturing on to the Roxburgh Gorge trail and ride through to Doctors Point. From here we board a boat with our bikes for an exhilarating ride13kms down the river to Shingle Creek. Back in the saddle, we continue riding to the Roxburgh Dam where we cross over and get on to the Clutha Gold Trail riding through to Roxburgh. Prepare to be totally wowed by spectacular scenery today! We'll be riding an undulating remote trail alongside the colourful Clutha Mata-au with steep bluffs rising up to 350 metres on both sides of the river, relics of Chinese miner huts and mining settlements.Revel in this majestic part of Central Otago often referred to as NZ's version of the Grand Canyon.When gold was discovered in this area in 1862, towns like Roxburgh shot up and were brimming with miners. Nowadays the town has a population of just 500 and gold has been replaced by pip and stone fruit. We'll have a late lunch in one of the local cafes or you might like to try a famous Jimmy's pie.We will be transferred by vehicle from Roxburgh to Clyde this afternoon.
DAY 4 Cycling Dunstan Trail -41 km
Today's ride is going to be more challenging but you have all day to take your time and enjoy this new trail which opened in May 2021. In the morning we will be transferred to Old Cromwell Town to begin our ride, but first you might like to have a little poke around the shops and galleries in this historic part of town. Cromwell offers sparkling waterways popular for on-water activities and a landscape of rocky rugged hills bronzed by the harsh summer sun. Back in the 1860s millions of ounces of gold was mined in the area -nowadays the new gold is Pinot Noir and cherries which grow with ease in the warm, semi-arid climate, schist soils and seasonal temperature extremes. Once on the Lake Dunstan Trail you will find yourself riding through the unique and fascinating landscapes totally characteristic of Central Otago. We start off on a Grade 1 ride from Old Cromwell to Cornish Point riding along Lake Dunstan and the Kawarau River. Along the way pass by vineyards and make a stop at Coffee Afloat for refreshments before navigating the second section. The next part of the trail is Grade 2+ so you will need to have your wits about you as you navigate cantilevers and switchbacks including the Cairnmuir Ladder which features 9 switchbacks! Some parts of the trail has steep drop offs and narrow tracks but we have all day and it is totally acceptable to dismount and walk your bike for any parts of the track that you don't feel comfortable riding.Once back in Clyde, we'll drop off our bikes and stroll back to our accommodation.Antique Lodge has the cutest Gin Stables in their garden. Made from schist rock and oozing aura and character -this isthe perfect place for our last night in Clyde. Enjoy a range of boutique NZ Gins to taste and locally produced platters before we stroll 5-minutes along the road for dinner at a local restaurant.
DAY 5 Clyde -Wanaka -Arrowtown
We pack up and depart Clyde after breakfast. Driving back along Lake Dunstan and across to Lake Hawea where we get those tired legs moving with a gentle stroll along New Zealand's ninth largest lake with it's magnificent views across glacial waters to snow-capped mountains.A short drive brings us to Albert Town's popular Pembroke Patisserie where you can purchase delicious French pastries with a modern Kiwi twist. The choice on what to have for lunch will not be easy! In Wanaka we'll take another short walk along the lake front to view the much photographed and insta-famous "That Tree" before continuing on to an iconic watering hole -The Cardrona Hotel. This is possibly one of the most photographed historic facades in the country. Time to wander through the hotel and read up on the history before relaxing in the gardens with a cool refreshment.The Crown Range lies between Wanaka and Queenstown and is NZ's highest main road-a truly stunning drive reaching an altitude of 1121 metres. From here it's a quick drive in to Arrowtown where we will be based for the next few days.We're in for a real treat at the luxury resort of Millbrook located on the outskirts of Arrowtown. The Resort is framed by the Remarkables Mountain Range and set on 650 acres of pristine golf fairways, pretty streams, rolling hills and beautifully maintained gardens and ancient trees. Late afternoon, we'll be treated to an exclusive tour by golf cart of the Resort. Learn what goes on behind the scenes to keep the greens and fairways in top condition and view some of the innovative developments and stunning homes. Dinner in Arrowtown, 2 nights at Millbrook Resort
DAY 6 Arrowtown cycling - 30km
Spend the morning exploring Arrowtown with it's heritage main street packed with boutique shops and a plethora of cafes & bars. There's charming historic cottages to photogragh, pretty tree-lined streets and remnants of a Chinese miners village. After lunch, we're back in the bike saddle tospend a leisurely afternoon cycling along the shady Arrow river, across suspension bridges and through the Kawerau gorge to that infamous Bridge where brave souls jump from great heights while connected to anelastic cord. You're welcome to give it a go!A little further on we reach the Gibbston Valley and visit a couple of vineyards for wine tasting before riding back to Arrowtown.Time to freshen up before our last evening together. Whilst we've been out, a local Chef has snuck in to our house and prepared some yummy treats! We'll start our "end of tour celebrations"with canapes & bubbles before strolling across to one of Millbrook's restaurants for dinner.
DAY 7 Trip end!
Tour ends after breakfast, with a transfer to Queenstown Airport or town.If you would like to spend some time in Queenstown,bear in mind that today is Good Friday so many things will be closed until the afternoon.
Tour Inclusions -6nights accommodation -Daily breakfast -Chief Navigator / Cycle Escort -Transportation by mini-bus -Transfers from/to Queenstown Airport or Queenstown -Merida E-bike for all 4 days of riding, helmet, pannier& transfers as specified -Gin Experience -Exclusive tour of Millbrook Resort -Canapes & Bubbles on last night
Excludes -Lunches & Dinners** -Items of a personal nature+ optional tours/activities
**Meals Not included: On days that we are cycling or travelling, you have the opportunity to purchase your lunch enroute. Evening meals will be at local restaurants.
This tour is not for learner cyclists. Some riding experience is necessary for you to get the most out of the tour. If you own a bike and/or ride on a regular basis, you will handle the trails with ease. We will be riding at a leisurely pace and have pedal-assist to get us up those gnarly hills!
Prefer Not to Ride E-bike?
If you prefer not to ride an Ebike, you can discount $250 off the tour price and will be provided with an Avanti Discovery 3, 27 speed with Hydraulic disc brakes and suspension in these at post.
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