8 Day / 7 Night tour Nelson – Richmond – Kaiteriteri Beach – Motueka – Mapua – Richmond – Reefton – Greymouth – Hokitika – Ross – Christchurch
This tour combines the best of the best – on two of the top rides on Nga Herenga, New Zealand’s world renowned national cycle route – the Tasman Great Taste Trail and the West Coast Wilderness Trail.
In Tasman enjoy a leisurely tour along sparkling coastline and through picturesque countryside dotted with galleries, vineyards and restaurants, where the mix of rural, urban, coastal and riverside scenery is a feast for the eyes – and the palate. A bonus day in Nelson gives an opportunity to enjoy the famous market, galleries and walks.
Then head to the West Coast’s lush rainforest, pristine rivers, tranquil lakes and rugged beaches, with the snow-capped peaks of the Southern Alps a truly sublime backdrop to the easy trail, which retraces old packhorse tracks, tramlines, railways, water races, and historic bridges through the Coast’s lush natural landscapes, and back in time to Māori pounamu (greenstone) gathering and the glittering gold rush era.
$3,980 per person, share twin
$1,010 single supplement
11 – 18 March, 2021
Introductory to Moderate
Remember E-Bikes take the strain and pain 🙂
• 7 breakfasts, 3 lunches & 4 dinners
• Accommodation as listed in the itinerary
• E-Bike rental and helmet
• Private transport for you, your luggage and the E-Bikes
• Services of Tours Direct Tour Leader, Helen Tait
• Cycle guide & technical support, Brian Farrant (with over 30 years experience as cycle tour guide)
• Bring your own E-Bike (price adjusted accordingly)
• Domestic airfares
A free transfer is available from Christchurch in the support mini-van, departing before 8.00am. Tour members in Christchurch can of course bring their own E-Bike.
If you are flying into Nelson airport please get a taxi to the Parkside Motel, Richmond.
The full group meets at 2.00pm at our accommodation for bike fittings followed by a short ride.
We have dinner at The Lemongrass, Richmond.
After a transfer from Richmond to Kaiteriteri, we have a photo opportunity at Kaiteriteri Beach. We cycle Tasman’s Great Taste Trail from just before Riwaka towards Nelson along the coast of Tasman Bay, with panoramic coastal and mountain views. We stop at the Mapua wharf to enjoy cottage-industry shops, cafes and restaurants set right on the picturesque bay, where we can watch boats sail past. After an independent lunch, catch a ferry to Rabbit Island and cycle on to the edge of the Waimea Estuary, home to a range of internationally significant bird species, including the white heron and royal spoonbill. We finish the day’s riding on the Great Taste Trail at Richmond.
This morning we transfer to Nelson by van for an hour at the famous Nelson Market. Helen will then lead a walking tour through town to the lovely Queen’s Gardens and Suter Art Gallery. Those who want to just relax in town can leave the group at this point, while the more energetic members of the group walk up with Helen to the Centre of New Zealand for great views over the city and Tasman Bay. Return to town for your choice of lunch at one of the city’s many cafes.
At 2.15 pm we meet at the Nelson i-SITE Visitor Information Centre to transfer by van to the amazing World of Wearable Arts Museum (plus Classic Cars as a bonus), then head back to Richmond to finish the afternoon with a wine tasting at Waimea Estates Winery.
Finish cycling the Great Taste Trail from Richmond via Spooners Tunnel to Kohatu. After lunch at Kohatu Café (at own expense), van transfer to Reefton where we will have time to check out this delightfully preserved old mining town before dinner.
Dinner this evening is at Dawson’s Hotel.
Van transfer to Greymouth to begin the Westland Wilderness Trail at the clocktower in downtown Greymouth. Cycle to Kumara for lunch and finish at the Old Christchurch Road. Van transfer to our accommodation in Hokitika.
Today is a day of outstanding variety in both surroundings and cycling and generally an easy gradient. Cycle on gravel trails and boardwalks passing the remnants of bygone mining. Pass ancient Podocarp forests to Cowboys Paradise, a replica Wild West town, and on to Lake Kaniere, with a picnic lunch. Cycle to our accommodation at Hokitika.
There are a couple of ride possibilities today, one way or return (66 km).
An easy cycle today on southern section and final section of the Wilderness Trail from Hokitika to Ross. Pass through wetlands, native forest, past old mills and lagoons to the end of the Wilderness Trail at the historic gold mining town of Ross. After checking out the gold museum at the information centre, van transfer back to Christchurch.
We have a Farewell Dinner at Curators House.
Airport drop off after breakfast.
Helen lives in Christchurch and is a keen skier, cyclist and tramper. She has led tours for Tours Direct for over 10 years, and loves sharing her enthusiasm for a wide range of places and cultures. She specially likes to share walking and cycling tours, at a relaxed pace suited to travellers for whom this might be a first. She has worked as a cycling guide in New Zealand, taking visitors and locals on high profile trails such as Alps to Ocean and the Otago Rail Trail, as well as some hidden gems, and she led the first cycle tour for Tours Direct, along the picturesque Danube. She is a convert to E-biking and now finds she no longer needs excuses to avoid biking up to her hillside home.
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