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2
introductory to moderate

Traveller Rating

 

Activities
  • 7 day cycle trail
Accommodation
  • 1 night homestead
  • 1 night vineyard
  • 2 nights motel
  • 2 nights lodge
Meals
  • 5 Dinners
  • 6 Lunches
  • 6 Breakfasts

7 Days$3295NZD

Hit the trails with confidence

100% refundable trips
Receive a full refund under our covid-19 T&Cs

$200 Deposits
for all new bookings on all trips

COVID safety measures
are in place with extra cleaning and hygiene protocols

Remote adventures
means social distancing comes naturally

Small groups only
Guided group sizes are strictly limited to a maximum of 14 people


Trip Code: WHB

Trip highlights


  • Ride up the leafy Hutt Valley and over the forested Remutaka Ranges
  • Stay the night at a boutique Martinborough vineyard
  • Enjoy the vineyards and farmland of the Wairarapa and Hawke's Bay
  • Meet rare, New Zealand wildlife at the Mt Bruce National Wildlife Centre
  • Stay at Hawkes Bay's Wallingford Homestead, built in 1858, and now a delightful retreat
  • Explore the pretty, country town of Havelock North
  • Choose your mode of transport up Te Mata Peak and soak up the views
  • Stay at the stunning River Valley Lodge and enjoy scenic rafting or horseback riding

Discover stunning vineyards, homesteads and countryside along the back roads of the rural lower North Island by bike on our fully supported Wairarapa and Hawkes Bay Back Roads tour.

Starting in Wellington you’ll head over the Remutaka Ranges, dropping down into our first wine region, Martinborough. You'll enjoy easy riding on the Hawke’s Bay trails through vineyards and orchards, tackle Te Mata peak by bike or van, and explore Havelock North, one of New Zealand's most picturesque small towns.

Over to the Manawatu via the stunning Gentle Annie, you’ll bike the delightful Manawatu cycleway and can to choose to enjoy a scenic rafting trip on the Rangitaiki River or a horseback ride through stunning back country.

Staying at some unique, historic properties along the way, you’ll enjoy warm hospitality in some very special places, well away from the noise, distraction and chronic busyness of everyday.


Your adventure begins with a short tour briefing in central Wellington before a drive round the Harbour to start our riding on the Hutt Valley River Trail. After a bike set-up and safety briefing, it’s an easy ride on a wide, largely flat pathway winding along the Hutt River to the foothills of the Remutaka Ranges and the leafy suburb of Maymorn. Along the way you’ll pass by some of New Zealand’s most important cultural history, including Maori pa and early European settlements. Leaving suburbia behind we follow an old railway route weaving through the Remutaka Ranges taking in more historical sights before climbing gently through native bush and regenerating forest to the summit. Then, it's a downhill ride along the historic Fell Locomotive Incline with an exciting half-kilometre journey through Summit Tunnel (1877). Expansive views of Lake Wairarapa open up as you emerge at Cross Creek. A short drive to Martinborough, the heart of Wairarapa wine country, for our overnight stay at a boutique vineyard, with dinner at the Martinborough Hotel.

Meals:  L,D

Our morning’s ride on the Wairarapa Cycleway is a pleasant touring route with stunning Wairarapa views and plenty of rural charm. We’ll take a mid-morning breather in the small, vibrant community of Gladstone before finishing this delightful ride in the small town of Masterton. Mt Bruce National Wildlife Centre is our afternoon destination. It’s an unfenced sanctuary for our native wildlife where many endangered birds live and are bred for release across Aotearoa, including the kiwi, takahe, kokako, kaka and longfin eel. We head back to Masterton for dinner and our night’s accommodation.

Meals:  B,D

The infamous Route 52 awaits us today, originally designated State Highway status but downgraded in 1960 when prosperity deserted New Zealand's farming industry and farming districts became depopulated. Today this route through quintessential rural New Zealand offers quiet roads, country pubs and friendly locals. Using the van to shuttle us to the most scenic sections we’ll finish our ride at Te Paerahi Beach, the best old-school NZ beach ever! Vast and golden, sheltered by large headlands at both ends and offering walks down to the rocks or up to the river mouth, it’s a great spot to explore. From there it’s a short drive to our accommodation at Wallingford Homestead, built in 1858 and at the heart of a 34,000 acre sheep and cattle station in the 1900’s. Now a boutique stay, it offers peace and quiet in beautiful surroundings.

Meals:  B,L,D

Wine country beckons today and we start with a lift in the van to the start of our morning’s ride. This continues yesterday’s rural theme on a stunning back-country road leading to the base of Te Mata Peak. Steeped in Maori legend the Peak is both a visual feast and an integral part of Hawke’s Bay’s history, Maori and European. You can choose to get to the top by pedal power or motor but either way the 360 degree views from the top are stunning and a great spot for a picnic lunch. A short drive takes us to our accommodation in Havelock North. You’ll have time to wander this pretty country town, with dinner at your leisure at one of the several restaurants on offer.

Meals:  B,L

After breakfast at a local café we join the local trail network for our ride, initially following the Tukituki river out to the coast through idyllic rural and riverside scenery, including plenty of vineyards and orchards. A short stretch along the coast brings us to the impressive Star Compass, a training tool used by celestial navigators who sailed traditionally throughout the Pacific. Heading inland again, following the Tukaekuri River, we finish our ride at a boutique Hawkes Bay winery for lunch. It’s time to leave the Hawke’s Bay and drive across remote hill country on the Gentle Annie road to the Manawutu – a lengthy journey but worth the effort to enjoy an authentic Kiwi experience. Our hosts for the next 2 nights are the McGaw family, who run River Valley Lodge, a venue of rustic charm providing exceptional country comfort, where the focus is on delivering a quality, fun experience, maintaining good relationships with the local community, and operating with a minimum footprint in the natural environment.

Meals:  B,L,D

A day to explore this mostly unknown part of New Zealand with several different activities to choose from. A scenic 13km rafting trip on the Rangitikei River taking in over 30 Grade 2 (easy) rapids, a side hike to a spectacular waterfall (weather dependent) and a riverside lunch, this adventure is perfect for all ages. If you prefer to keep your feet dry you might enjoy a half day horseback adventure, honing your horsemanship skills followed by a horse ride out into the picturesque local country side. Other options include exploring the local area by bike or on foot – either takes you off the beaten track and into remote, stunning back country. A second night enjoying dinner at River Valley Lodge where meals are a celebration of seasonal produce, sourced primarily from the Lodge gardens. The chefs create the daily menu from whatever produce is freshly harvested that day.

Meals:  B,L,D

Today we head off the beaten track (again!) on a scenic and often surprising journey through rural Manawatu, full of natural wonders, local history and country hospitality. We wind our way down into the beautiful Pohangina Valley, kept company by the Pohangina River (plenty of swimming spots!) and the slightly forbidding Ruahine Ranges. Onwards the area is rich in native bush and we pass the historic Komako Church and the beautiful ancient forest at Totara Reserve. The stunning scenery continues all the way to the quaint little countryside town of Ashhurst where our cycling adventure finally comes to an end. A final lunch to celebrate new friendships and our amazing journey before we return to Wellington.

Meals:  B,L


Inclusions

  • 6 breakfasts, 6 lunches, 5 dinners
  • 6 nights accommodation with ensuite facilities on a twin share basis
  • Wine tasting at 2 wineries
  • Entrance Fee to Pukaha National Wildlife Centre
  • Experienced guides who handle all the hard bits and share epic stories
  • Tasty nutritious snacks, drinks and treats
  • Pre departure information kit to help you plan and prepare
  • Access and concession fees paid to the Department of Conservation
  • New Zealand Goods and Services Tax (GST)

  • Bike hire (including helmet)
  • Meals not mentioned in the itinerary
  • All beverages, other than breakfast
  • Optional Activities at River Valley Lodge
  • Arrival and departure transfers
  • Water bottle (help us save the environment and bring your own bike drink bottle)
  • Personal expenses (eg. phone calls, internet, laundry, shopping etc)
  • Travel insurance

About Your Leader

Our guides are one of our biggest assets and we pride ourselves on their level of quality and high standards. Once the trip reaches 8 people, we provide you with two of our expert guides to maximise your enjoyment and overall experience. You’ll know you’re in safe hands as all of our guides are certified in first aid and CPR and many of them are trained bike mechanics. They come from all walks of life but our guides have a common desire to give you the best possible experience, fun and lots of fond memories to take home with you.


Accommodation


Bike information


Grading

introductory to moderate  
2

The Wairarapa and Hawke's Bay Backroads tour is graded introductory to moderate. The trails are not technical but you do need to be capable of cycling distances between 50-70km per day, for 5+ days. There's still plenty of time for our casual morning tea stops. On-road trail sections may have low to moderate traffic levels, mostly on back-roads. Riders need to be confident riding with some traffic. E-bikes are suitable if ridden appropriately and manage battery life (i.e. not on Turbo the whole time, and in the correct chain ring for climbing hills).


Departure dates


Want to organise a private group?

Fundraising events, sporting groups, family treats; learn how you can organise a Private Group from just 6 travellers.

Total Priceper person from

$3295NZD

Options & Supplements*
  • Bike RentalNZD$180
  • e-Bike Rental (subject to availability)NZD$600
  • Single Supplement - Limited to 2 per departureNZD$895
*Prices listed are per person

Essential information

Ready to book? Make sure you download and read the detailed Wairarapa and Hawke's Bay Back Roads trip notes which contains all the essential information you need to know before booking. Once you’ve booked, we will supply you with a Pre-Departure document which contains a detailed gear list and other important information to help you prepare for your adventure ahead.


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