100% RefundsIf NZ enters Level 3 or 4See COVID-19 Terms and Conditions
4
moderate to challenging
Activities
  • 8 days cycling
Accommodation
  • 8 nights hotel/motel
Meals
  • 4 Dinners
  • 6 Lunches
  • 8 Breakfasts

9 Days$4095NZD

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: NIR

Trip highlights


  • Ride NZ’s spectacular coastal and rural roads from Wellington to Auckland
  • Enjoy local kiwi hospitality at the comfortable Wallingford Homestead
  • Wander through Napier's historic art deco quarter
  • Explore the wine regions of the Hawke's Bay
  • Cycle up the historic Gentle Annie climb onto the Central Plateau
  • Visit Wai-O-Tapu ad Te Puia thermal parks
  • Taste a traditional Maori Hangi with storytelling and cultural performances

Cycle a selection of New Zealand’s quiet back roads from the capital all the way to the City of Sails on this 9 day fully supported road biking tour. From Wellington, we follow winding roads through the Hutt Valley towards the Rimutaka Ranges. Our ride then descends through vineyards to the east where we follow rolling coastal and rural roads to the town of Napier.

Two nights in Napier allows us plenty of time to explore the world renowned art deco architecture, enjoy more scenic riding and the equally impressive wines of nearby Hawke’s Bay. Our journey then takes us to volcanic landscapes of the Central Plateau via the infamous ‘Gentle Annie’ climb.

There’s time to explore Rotorua’s thermal paradise before heading further North to the Coromandel Peninsula. Here, we ride along another stunning coastline to our final destination, Auckland.

Our guides will be there to show you the best of NZ, share their stories and will always be nearby with the support vehicle if anyone gets tired legs, or needs a snack! You’ll also enjoy a variety of carefully picked local accommodation and hospitality.


Your North Island Back Roads trip meets in Wellington at 8:00am. After we’ve said hello to our fellow bikers, had our bike fitting and tour briefing, we drive to the suburb of Karori, where we set off on our bikes along quiet and hilly rural roads. There will be time to visit the wild Makara Beach before riding through farmland scattered with huge windmills and exploring gorges and rivers. This afternoon we are free to explore the vibrant and creative city of Wellington, visiting some of the many galleries or museums, walk along the waterfront, or through the botanical gardens. We will meet later in the evening for our first group meal together with a chance to discuss the exciting itinerary ahead. Cycling Distance: Makara Circuit - up to 35km / 22 miles Total Ascent: 400m

Meals:  L,D

Our second day starts with a drive over the winding Rimutaka Range to Martinborough, a charming colonial town in the heart of the Wairarapa wine region. Here, we get on our bikes and ride the quiet roads and vineyards to Gladstone, following the Whangaehu Valley. On arrival, we’ll be welcomed with a local beverage at the Gladstone Inn. After lunch we take a short drive and begin our ride to Castlepoint, known for its rugged coast line and century-old lighthouse. We enjoy a short walk to the view point, before driving to Masterton and our nights’ accommodation. Cycling Distance: Martinborough to Gladstone - 33km / 21 miles Awatoitoi to Castlepoint - 42km / 26 miles Total Ascent: 700

Meals:  B,L

This morning we drive an hour north to near Pahiatua, where we begin our ride. We follow the Makuri River before gradually ascending 460m to cross the Puketoi Range. The road climbs high above the valley, offering incredible views in all directions. From there, a fast decent takes us to Pongaroa, where we continue through the small farming communities of Waione, Ti Tree and Wimbledon to Porangahau Beach. Next up, we pass by the 1000ft hill that holds the Guinness World Record for the longest place name with 85 characters. Locals call it Taumata Hill after a native warrior. After we pack up the bikes, we drive to our accommodation at Wallingford Homestead and enjoy a hearty meal prepared by our kiwi hosts. Cycling Distance: Ngaturi to Porangahua Beach - 113km / 70miles Total Ascent - 900m

Meals:  B,L,D

After breakfast we jump on our bikes and head out on the road straight from our front door. This morning’s ride takes us along quiet rural roads to the small town of Waipukurau. After a coffee stop we transfer a short distance north to Waipawa where we start riding again. Our route follows the wide Tukutuki River valley, lined by grassy hills and vineyards. On arriving at the pretty town of Havelock North, we can challenge ourselves to a steep hill climb to the top of Te Mata Peak. Climbing 385m over 7km we reach an incredible lookout with 360 degree views over the whole of the Hawke’s Bay. From Napier and Mahia Peninsula to the north and east, hill country to the south and the Ruahine, Kaweka and Maungaharuru mountain ranges to the west. Mount Ruapehu is also often visible in the distance. It's well worth the effort! We then transfer to the seaside art deco town of Napier where we will spend the next two nights. Cycling Distance: Wallingford to Waipukurau - 29km / 18miles Waipawa to Havelock North - 50km / 31miles Te Mata Peak Climb - 7km / 4miles Total Ascent: 300m + 385m optional

Meals:  B,L,D

Today is a free day to relax or enjoy a short ride from Napier. The Hawke’s Bay is blessed with fertile soils and a warm, temperate climate, and is among New Zealand’s leading producers of wine; notably red wines – cabernet sauvignon, merlot and syrah – and stunning chardonnays. You can follow one of the many self guided bicycle wine trails visiting some of the region’s 30+ cellar doors, and numerous artisan producers, connected by flat, easy riding cycle paths. Napier is also called the art deco capital as the city was rebuilt in the architectural styles of the time following the devastating 1931 earthquake. You can wander through the art deco buildings and enjoy the many restaurants and cafes in the town. Another option is to take a 4WD tour to visit to the Gannet Colony at Cape Kidnappers to see the largest, most accessible mainland nesting area of gannets in the world. You are free to make your own lunch and dinner arrangements.

Meals:  B

We begin our day with a wonderful ride on the recently paved road from Omahu to Taihape through the Kaweka Forest Park. We’ll scale the local hill named “Gentle Annie”, reaching an altitude of 950m which is the highest point on the whole tour. We retrace an ancient Maori route between Hawke’s Bay and the Inland Patea district, around the headwaters of the Rangitikei River. Once we’ve reached Taihape, the ‘Gumboot Capital of NZ’ we drive to the Tongariro National Park on the Central Plateau. In the late afternoon, those keen to explore can walk to the Silica Rapids on the flanks of Mt Ruapehu, to see a series of shallow terraces coated in white deposits. Our comfortable accommodation awaits us with views of the volcanic cones of Tongariro, Ngarahoe and Ruapehu. Cycling Distance: Waiwhare to Taihape - up to 100km / 70 miles Total Ascent: 1800m

Meals:  B,L

This morning we head out on a walk down the Whakapapanui Track which descends through native bush following the Wahakapapanui Stream, there could be the chance to see or hear the native blue duck, known in Maori as whio. After our walk, we leave the Central Plateau and drive to visit the colourful pools and geysers of Wai-O-Tapu Thermal Wonderland on the outskirts of Lake Taupo. Then we hop back on the bikes and cycle through the quiet rural Waikete Valley towards Rotorua. Rotorua is a small town on the side of Lake Rotorua famous for its hot pools, geysers and thermal reserves. This evening we will experience a Maori feast prepared in the traditional Hangi style, visit Te Puia’s geothermal valley and the impressive Pohutu Geyser, as well as being entertained by traditional Maori cultural performances. Cycling Distance: Wai-O-Tapu to Rotorua - up to 40km / 25 miles Total Ascent: 430

Meals:  B

After breakfast we drive towards Matamata and start riding near Te Poi, following a quiet road winding northwards alongside the Kaimai Range. We will ride as far as Te Aroha and then visit the town of Paeroa, ‘World Famous in NZ’ for L&P; the “Lemon and Paeroa” drink. Next, we drive to Miranda and cycle the coastal road to Kawakawa Bay affording wonderful views across the Firth of Thames. We then load up and drive to Auckland, and our final destination. Tonight we have our final meal together to celebrate our week’s cycling achievements. Cycle Distance: Te Poi to Te Aroha - 45km / 28miles Miranda to Kawakawa Bay - 40km / 25miles Total Ascent: 270m

Meals:  B,L,D

After breakfast, it’s time for our farewell as the trip comes to an end. Shuttles, buses and taxis are readily available to get to the airport. Additional nights accommodation can be arranged in Auckland if required.

Meals:  B


Inclusions

  • 8 nights hotel/motel accommodation, based on twin or double share with ensuite facilities
  • 8 breakfasts, 6 lunches, 4 dinners
  • Professional qualified guide/driver
  • Private vehicle transport
  • Entrance into Wai-O-Tapu Thermal Wonderland Park
  • Te Puia Maori culture dinner and performance
  • Snacks and water while cycling
  • Department of Conservation and National Park Fees
  • New Zealand Goods and Services Tax (GST)

  • International and domestic airfares and taxes
  • Arrival and departure transfers
  • Meals not mentioned in the itinerary
  • All beverages, other than breakfast
  • Bike hire (including helmet)
  • Water bottle (help us save the environment and bring your own bike drink bottle)
  • Optional activities
  • Personal expenses (eg. phone calls, internet, laundry, shopping etc)
  • Travel insurance
  • Visa (if required)
  • Tips

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

moderate to challenging  
4

To determine the grade of a particular adventure we consider a number of factors. These include the condition of the terrain, the altitude, the amount of climbing, the types of roads and the length of the trip. The North Island Back Roads Cycle is graded moderate to challenging. You will need to be a competent road rider with stamina and a good level of fitness, you should be able to cycle comfortably for up to 6-8 hours or around 100km/60miles per day, day after day, with some extended uphill ascents. There are some long days and some steep sections. You should be confident riding on main roads alongside traffic which can be travelling at speed. This tour is not for beginners. 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.


Departure dates


Notes

HS
Holiday Season
P
Easter Holiday Supplement

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

$4095NZD

Options & Supplements*
  • Easter Holiday SupplementNZD$100
  • Road Bike RentalNZD$400
  • e-Bike Rental (subject to availability)NZD$640
  • Single SupplementNZD$995
*Prices listed are per person

Essential information

Ready to book? Make sure you download and read the detailed North Island 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.


Trip reviews


Similar trips

Leaving Goat Pass Hut as we make our Southern Alps crossing | Department of Conservation, NZ
New Zealand
 
5 Reviews
Cyclists working their way up the West Coast of the South Island | Tim de Jong
New Zealand
 
24 Reviews
Riding through West Coast bush | Carol Prantner
New Zealand
 
13 Reviews
The beauty of Lake Tekapo and its surroundings is ideal for photos | Learna Cale
New Zealand
 
Join Newsletter
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/ADS.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="Adventures South"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>Adventure South</div>
Adventure South NZ is unrivalled in their geographic coverage, originality and overall quality of adventures holidays in New Zealand. Choose from walking, cycling, winter or multi-activity holidays, on either the North or South Island.
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/AWH.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="Australian Walking Holidays"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>Australian Walking Holidays</div>
Australian Walking Holidays specialises in small group guided walking adventures. Since 1982 we have been guiding small groups of travellers on Australia's finest walks across our tropical, coastal or red centre landscapes.
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/GCT.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="Great Canadian Trails"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>Great Canadian Trails</div>
Great Canadian Trails specialises in active holidays in Canada. With both guided and supported self-guided options available, our unique itineraries draw upon some of Canada's most inspiring parks, trails and landscapes from coast to coast.
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/HUM.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="Humac Challenge"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>Huma Charity Challenge</div>
Huma enables those with adventurous spirits to challenge themselves and make a difference for a cause close to their heart. Travel, fundraise and meet life-long friends on one of Huma's meaningful and unique challenges around the world.
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/WB.jpg?v2' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="Walkers’ Britain"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>Walkers' Britain</div>
Walkers' Britain (formerly Sherpa Expeditions) have specialised in walking and cycling trips in the United Kingdom and Europe since 1973. Explore iconic trails and destinations on a self guided or small group active holiday with Walkers' Britain.
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/WB.jpg?v2' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="Walkers’ Britain"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>Walkers' Britain</div>
Walkers' Britain (formerly Sherpa Expeditions) have specialised in walking and cycling trips in the United Kingdom and Europe since 1973. Explore iconic trails and destinations on a self guided or small group active holiday with Walkers' Britain.
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/TAS.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="Tasmania Expeditions"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>Tasmanian Expeditions</div>
Tasmanian Expeditions is the most experienced operator of treks and adventure travel holidays in Tasmania. We own and operate the most comprehensive range of adventure holidays available across Tasmania's varied landscapes.
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/UTX-new.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="Utracks"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>UTracks</div>
UTracks are the active European holiday specialists. Whether you prefer cycling or walking, 2-star or 4-star, small groups or self guided, land, river or sea – UTracks can help you to explore Europe exactly the way you want.
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/WYA.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="World Youth Adventures"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>World Youth Adventures</div>
World Youth Adventures is our specialist division dedicated to organising tailor made overseas school group adventures. Specialists in Service Learning projects, choose from more destinations than any other school group provider.
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/YOM.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="Yomads"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>Yomads</div>
Yomads offers adventures for the 20s and 30s on six continents. Designed as a way to bring young and likeminded travellers together, Yomads caters to those interested in lightly structured and active trips that allow freedom to roam and explore.
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/ACT.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="Australian Cycle Tours"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>Australian Cycle Tours</div>
Australian Cycle Tours specialises in high quality self guided and guided cycling experiences in a selection of the most beautiful regions in Australia.
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/WEX.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="World Expeditions"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>World Expeditions</div>
The pioneers of original, worldwide adventure travel holidays since 1975
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/TJX.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="Trail Journeys"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>Trail Journeys</div>
Self-guided cycling experts on New Zealand's Otago Rail Trail and more
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/BMAC.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="Blue Mountains Adventure Company"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>Blue Mountains Adventure Company</div>
The original Blue Mountains canyoning, hiking, climbing and abseiling experts
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/GWNZ.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="Great Walks of New Zealand"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>Great Walks of New Zealand</div>
Explore New Zealand's most spectacular wilderness regions with the self-guided hiking experts
<img src='/portals/World%20Expeditions/Icons/brands/small/NAA.jpg' class='brandPopoverIcon' alt="North America Active"> <div class='brandPopoverBrandName'>North America Active</div>
USA Canada hiking & cycling tour specialists, choose from self-guided or guided trips