New Zealand Cycling and Hiking Adventures

Southern Coast Cycle

Southern Coast Cycle

Trip Highlights

  • A diverse 7 day tour that explores quiet roads seldom cycled by others
  • Cycle alongside the stunning Lake Wakitipu as you head towards Te Anau on the edge of the Fiordland National Park
  • Cycle alongside the rugged coastline of the deep south, sculptured by winter Antarctic storms
  • Discover the magic of the Catlins Coast with its beautiful bays and exotic wildlife
  • Take an optional Royal Albatross tour on the Otago Pennisula

Trip Summary

I know I left it around here somewhere!

Experience the remote bays, windswept coastlines and rare wildlife of Southland by bike. Lush green rolling plains, wild windswept coastlines and unique wildlife experiences characterise New Zealand's southern most region- Southland. This remarkable tour begins by cycling the scenic boarder roads of the Fiordland National Park before visiting the world's most southern city- Invercargill. The wildlife experiences in the remote Catlins Coast, home to an ancient petrified forest, fur seals, rare hectors dolphins and the yellow-eyed penguin - the world's rarest penguin - will leave you rejuvenated before exploring Dunedin, famous for it's scottish history, the Otago Peninsula and it's famous Royal Albatross.

Trip Grading

To determine the grade of a particular adventure we consider a number of factors. These include the condition of the terrain, the altitude, the number of pass crossings and the length of the trip. The Southern Coasts Cycle is graded moderate to challenging. You will need a reasonable level of fitness and we suggest 90 minutes of aerobic type exercise, (either cycling or jogging) three times a week for the three months leading up to your trip. The tour is fully supported and if at any stage you feel like having a rest from cycling you will be able to ride in the support vehicle.


Important: The night before your tour is to depart your guide will call your pre tour accommodation to advise what time they will collect you the following morning. (Please make sure you have given us information as to where you are staying). If you are not around when your guide calls they will leave a message at reception – its really important that you check with reception if you have not heard from your guide directly. If for any reason you have not heard from your guide by the morning of the tour please call us in the NZ office on 0800 00 11 66 (from within NZ). An early morning start gets us on the road down the side of Lake Wakatipu and the rolling rural roads of upper Southland. The native red tussock covered hills lead us into the township of Te Anau, perched on the edge of the Fiordland National Park, our goal is Five Rivers but stronger riders can be challenged by the possibility of a century ride today. Ride – 176 kms/109 miles Shorter Option – Queenstown to Five Rivers – 99kms/60 miles

Meals:  L,D

The morning’s ride takes us alongside Lakes Te Anau & Manapouri before we head south through an ever-changing landscape. The stark arid mountains give way to more gentle pastures as we enter the productive Southland farm country. Small communities dot the landscape and the coastal riding becomes spectacular. This coast is exposed to southerly blasts creating some surreal windswept scenery. Gradually we quit the farmlands and approach Invercargill where we'll stay tonight. Ride 85km / 52miles

Meals:  B,L

The route today skirts the beautiful and undiscovered Catlins Forest Park and coastline. The roads are quiet and the scenery diverse as the coastline increasingly becomes spectacular. The ride ends at beautiful Curio Bay where we enjoy a leisurely picnic by the sea, walks along the beach, a swim for the brave & a visit to a petrified forest on the sea-shore. This is a renowned wildlife area & you are likely to see the rare Hectors Dolphins, Fur Seals & Yellow Eyed Penguins. Ride – 92 kms /57 miles

Meals:  B,L,D

More scenic cycling along quiet roads today as we continue along the Catlins coast. The cycling is tough with some serious climbs but the rewarding views of the coastline make the effort well worth it. Another picnic by the sea gives us the chance for a beach walk before we continue cycling on to Owaka. Late afternoon we drive out to Surat Bay for a yet another walk on a remote and beautiful beach to visit the resident Sea Lions. Ride – 58kms kms / 36 miles

Meals:  B,L,D

This morning we ride out to Nugget Point to a magnificent view point before continuing on to Balclutha for lunch. We'll drive to Milton and fom here a serious climb will challenge you before you drop down to the coast for the final gentle ride along the beach into Dunedin. Ride – Owaka to Balclutha – 43 kms / 26 miles Milton to Dunedin – 54 kms / 34 miles

Meals:  B,L

Today we explore the Otago Peninsula by bike. This ride has some wonderful coastal views, with optional visit to Larnach Castle and/or the Royal Albatross Colony (both at own expense). We'll then make our way to historical Oamaru stopping at the Koekohe Beach along the way to see the unusually large and spherical boulders lying on the beach. We'll stay in Oamaru for the evening. Ride - up to 75km / 46 miles Optional coastal ride into Oamaru 30km /18 miles

Meals:  B,D

Today we are Christchurch bound - but not before more rural cycling. We have an option to visit the award winning Whitestone Cheese factory and Riverstone Kitchen, NZ's restaurant of the year, to see their amazing gardens where they grow most of their own kitchen produce. We then start cycling on quiet roads through small farmlets and communities along the Pareora river valley. An optional challenge is the climb over Pareora Gorge before we visit the spectacular St Davids Pioneer Church, made without nails out of local river stones & timbers. A final burst of cycling takes us to a late lunch at Pleasant Point and the start of the final drive back to Christchurch. With good traffic flows we should be into Christchurch by around 5.30pm. Ride – up to 40kms / 24 miles

Meals:  B

What's Included

  • 6 Breakfasts, 5 lunches, 4 dinners
  • 6 nights hotel/motel ensuite accommodation on a twin share basis
  • Professional qualified driver/guide
  • 2 professional guides/drivers on trips with 8 or more people
  • Private vehicle transport
  • Water bottle, water and snacks while cycling
  • Access and concession fees paid to the Department of Conservation
  • New Zealand Goods and Services Tax (GST)

What's Not Included

  • International or domestic flights and taxes
  • Arrival and departure transfers
  • Meals not mentioned in the itinerary
  • All beverages, other than breakfast
  • Bike hire (including helmet)
  • Optional activities (eg. visit to Lanarch Castle, Albatross Colony)
  • Personal expenses (eg. phone calls, internet, laundry, shopping etc)
  • Travel insurance
  • Visa (if required)
  • Tips

Road Bike (top), Hybrid Bike (centre) and Tandem Bike

ROAD BIKE (Additional Charge)

On road cycling tours our road bikes provide the ultimate cycling experience with their narrower tyres and lightweight frames for increased efficiency and speed. The drop hand bars offer multi hand positions to provide muscle relief and comfort. Our bikes are fitted with compact crank sets and wide range rear cassettes to suit people with varying levels of cycling experience and for longer cycling routes.


HYBRID BIKE (Additional Charge)

A hybrid bike blends the best characteristics of both road and mountain bikes into a comfortable bike ideal for riding on both sealed roads and gravel cycle trails.

The hybrids design allows you to sit upright in a position that provides the best control of the bike with well-placed center of gravity and in a posture that reduces strain on the rider's neck and back.

We have low rise, also known as step though bike frames. as well as standard frame styles available.


TANDEM BIKE (Additional Charge)

Our tandem bikes for road cycling tours are ideal for experienced cycle partners to enjoy the journey together. The riding position on our tandems is similar to being on a mountain bike but we fit road tyres to make them perfect for the sealed roads.

For bicycle specifications please contact us.



Bikes can be fitted with flat pedals, toes clips or SPD pedals. A bicycle helmet and drink bottle will be included with your bike rental, and a 15L saddle bag for personal items you might need in the day can be fitted to the hybrid bikes.

Upcoming Travel Dates



Duration:7 Days
Starting Point:Queenstown
Grade:Moderate  Click for more information
Trip Code:SCC
Prices From:NZD$2595
Bike Rental:NZD$190 
E-Bike Rental:NZD$560 
Single Supplement 2016/17:NZD$625 
Single Supplement 2017/18:NZD$625 

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About us

Since 1992, Adventure South NZ has operated an exciting range of guided cycling, hiking and multi-activity holidays right across New Zealand – and the world - to suit all levels of fitness. We are part of the World Expeditions Travel Group.

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