Otago Central Rail Trail Cycle Tour
- Price from:
- 1087 NZD /person
- 64 3 942 1222
- 64 3 942 4030
- Payment Types:
- Credit Card
- Travellers cheque
- Wire Transfer
- 5 days
- Location Start:
- Location Finish:
- Start time:
- 07.00 am
- End time:
- 05.00 pm
- We Speak:
Last updated: 12/09/2008
Bike the Otago Central Rail Trail. Step back in time to New Zealandâs rural past and join us on this cycle delight. The route follows the old Maniototo rail line from Clyde in Otago to Middlemarch.
We will come and pick you up from your pre tour accommodation in Christchurch. A quick check of your bike and after a quick lunch stop in Tekapo we start our cycle program with a quiet ride alongside a canal system with spectacular views of Mt Cook & the Southern Alps. In the later afternoon we will ride any easy loop trail combining the first part of the Cromwell riverside trail with an old road from the days of the hydro dam construction. You should try and allow some time in Clyde to explore this old goldmining town before enjoying our first dinner together.
The real riding starts today as we leave town across the flat rural countryside. From Chatto Creek the trail starts to rise before leveling off to Omakau where we stop for lunch. Stronger riders may enjoy an optional detour from Omakau to the historic village of Ophir (8kms return). After lunch the remaining 9km flow under the wheels until we arrive at Lauder. Late afternoon we will take a drive to the historic gold mining village, St. Bathans for a walk around the beautiful blue lake. This evening it is time for a relaxing beer and a game of pool at the local pub before dinner.
On this day we head inland and ride through the first two tunnels and two rail bridges on the trip. With the willow tree edged gorge below the trail and the welcoming pools beckoning we finally emerge into the scenic Idaburn valley. One last short easy climb takes us to the summit of the trail and the beginning of the downhill descent that will take us first to the art deco township of Ranfurly. We lunch at a local cafe and then a short drive takes us to the beautiful township of Naseby and our hotel stay for the night. There are some nice local walks around the village pr for the keen cyclist an easy forest trail alongside an old water race. For those willing to try their hand at something new, we have an option to try the sport of curling in the local indoor rink, the first in the southern hemisphere.
An early start for our longest ride today but it is some of the best riding of the trip. From Waipiata the trail follows the edge of the old lake before entering the Taieri Gorge. The trail crosses through further tunnels and bridges before a fast downhill to the lovely cafe at the old hotel at Hyde. From here a final 27kms takes us past the scene of the famous Hyde rail disaster of 1943 and then out onto the rolling plains slowly descending into Middlemarch. This is the end of the trail and time for a celebratory drink at the Kissing Gate Cafe. However the day is not yet finished and by 4.30pm we join the famous Taieri Express for a spectacular ride through the gorge described as one of the worlds great train journeys. We travel into Dunedin, the Edinburgh of the South, our dinner tonight is in the form of a group celebration to acknowledge the 150kms of Rail Trail riding.
The riding is still not finished as we head north to Oamaru, leaving behind those who wish to finish in Dunedin. Via the beautiful coastal roads we get to visit the famous Fluers Cafe at picturesque Moeraki Village & the Moeraki Boulders before turning onto the final quiet 24km coastal ride along the cliff tops and farms that take us into Oamaru. Here in the old warehouse quarter the early buildings are being restored creating a fascinating opportunity to explore the past as you relax at a local cafe. Back on the road again we continue across the Canterbury Plains and finally reach Christchurch where we will deliver you to your chosen accommodation at the trip end.
- Inclusions -
- Exclusions -
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