Days 1 + 2 Departure from Paris to Christchurch, South Island
Depart for a long flight of approximately 24h to one of the furthest countries from Europe.
Day 3 Christchurch
Welcome to Christchurch, New Zealand’s second largest town, which stands above the Pacific coast. Shortly after your arrival, you will have the opportunity to visit the city and Port Hill where you can admire the view of the South Pacific and the plains of Canterbury which open onto the foothills of the “Southern Alps”.
Day 4 Christchurch – Akaroa Peninsula Banks 50km
After breakfast, your day begins with a transfer to Lyttelton, the starting point of your cycle towards Diamond Harbor. After the lunch break, you will discover the beautiful landscapes from the Littel river to Motukarara. Transfer back to Christchurch.
Day 5 Christchurch – Twizel 58 km
The day begins by a bus transfer to Lake Tekapo and Pukaki Reservoir. On this first bike leg you can spot the famous Mount Cook by following the route of the canal to Lake Ruataniwha, known for its rowing regattas. Your tour ends in Twizel.
Day 6 Twizel – Moeraki 60km
Stroll through the “High Country” and pass right next to a Hobbit village, many scenes from the film trilogy of “The Hobbit” as well as “Narnia” were filmed here. Your route will follow the “Vanished World Heritage Trail” to the Pacific Ocean through a beautiful hilly landscape. Your goal today: the small fishing village of Moeraki and the famous “Moeraki Boulders”. In the evening or the next morning, departure by bus to the lighthouse. A hike will take you to see the yellow-eyed penguins and sea lions. Yellow-eyed penguins are on the verge of extinction.
Day 7 Moeraki – Naseby 49 km
In the morning, leave by bus to the Macraes Flat, the largest active gold mine in New Zealand. Since 1990, 1.8 million gold bars have been extracted from this mine. We can observe the area from a belvedere. One of the most beautiful bike rides awaits us. From 500 m above sea level, descent to the village of Hyde. The circuit follows the gold prospectors Otago Rail Trail, a disused railway track dating from 1879, through tunnels and over viaducts with an impressive view of the Otago landscape.
Day 8 Naseby – Queenstown 50km
In the morning, you can practice curling (yes really!!) on real ice or just soak up the atmosphere of the mining village of Naseby. Depart from Naseby by bus to Wedderburn then continue cycling on the Rail Trail.
Day 9 Queenstown
Queenstown is the St-Tropez of New Zealand. The city has a lot to offer, from zip lining to rafting, steamboat rides to bungee jumping. Half or full day visit to Milford Sound by plane or by bus if you feel tempted.
Day 10 Queenstown – Wanaka 51km
In the morning, we visit the legendary gold prospecters town of Arrowtown. On today’s cycle tour, you will have a splendid view from Crown Sattel over Wakati and Wanaka lakes. We cross the highest asphalted pass in New Zealand and then descend to Wanaka, on the banks of the lake bearing the same name.
Day 11 Wanaka – Glacier de Fox 81km
A day full of contrasts awaits us. By bus, along Lakes Hawea and Wanaka and through a very impoverished mountainous region to reach Makarora. By bike we continue to the Haast Pass, walk to the 30m high Thunder Creek waterfalls and then cycle down to the sea. The circuit runs along the Mt Aspiring National Park. In clear weather you can see the snow-capped peaks glittering in the sun. A bus ride from the swamp forest of Kahikatea followed by a short hike takes you to the foot of the Fox glacier in the middle of the rainforest.
Day 12 Glacier le Fox Hotitika 67km
Early in the morning we are driven to lake Matheson and on a clear day there is a fantastic view of the New Zealand Alps. Relaxing break at the lake. The hike to the foot of the Fox glacier or the nearby Franz Josef glacier is an unforgettable experience. From Mahinapua lake we drive through the rainforest, go around lake Kaniere and reach Hokitika. Bike ride on the West Coast Wilderness Trails between Ross and the Mahinapua lake. Travel by bus to the capital of the jade carving business, Hokitika, and visit one of the jade carvers.
Day 13 Hokitika via Punakaiki – St Arnaud 45km
We start the day at Lake Kaniere on a spectacular cycle route through the rainforest to Kumnare passing close to a real cowboy village. We continue by bus on the coastal road to the famous Pancake Rocks in Punakaiki. These limestone formations are so named as they are reminiscent of pancakes. Here, in the heart of Paparoa National Park, we walk to the Blow Holes. From there, we go from the west coast to the northern part of the New Zealand Alps, through the Buller Valley and the alpine region of Nelson Lake National Park to St Arnaud.
Day 14 St Arnaud – Nelson 45km
Short transfer from the mountains by bus to the new “Great Taste Trail” from Motueka to Nelson. This includes a ferry trip to Rabbit Island. Beautiful walk along the coast in a Mediterranean climate. The region is known for its many art studios.
Day 15 Nelson
A day of free time in Nelson which is situated on Captain Abel Tasman’s favourite coast. He was one of the first explorers to discover Australia and New Zealand. Depending on your wishes, you have different options for this day: Abel Tasman Track, a bike ride around Nelson (no extra charge), a wine tasting or a kayak tour.
Day 16 Nelson – Picton and Picton – Wellington by ferry
Very early transfer this morning to Picton to take the ferry to Wellington to have the most time possible there. Enjoy the crossing of the Queen Charlotte Estuary, the Torry Canal, and the Cook Strait.
Day 17 Wellington – Wanganui
No cycling today. After a short tour of the city, we visit Mount Victoria with magnificent views of the city and the port, the Parliament building, the historic district of the city, and St. Paul’s Church. Then we visit one of the most innovative museums, the Te Papa National Museum. In the afternoon, drive along the west coast to the city of gardens, Wanganui.
Day 18 Wanganui – Tongariro National Park 57km
Get ready for a new, beautiful cycling day in New Zealand, the SH 4 circuit runs along the Mangawhero River to the Tongariro National Park. A short pause in the small hamlet steeped in Maori culture, then continue to Raehiti on the edge of Tongariro Park. The Wanganui river road, 100 km long, leads along the Wanganui River and the Wanganui National Park. The tour finishes in the Tongariro National Park a UNESCO World Heritage site. This immense plateau is dominated by the three volcanoes: Mt Ruapehu, Mt Ngauruhoe and Mt Tongariro.
Day 19 National parc Tongariro – Rotorua 53km
Today we cycle along Lake Rotoaira to Turangi near Lake Taupo, the largest artificial lake in New Zealand. Rotorua, with its gigantic geysers and bubbling mud baths, is the most active of the world’s thermal regions. In the evening, Maori dances and songs that end with the traditional Hangi.
Day 20 Rotorua – Te Aroha 63km
Visit of the city and various thermal regions. We leave Rotorua along Lake Rotorua towards the Kamai-Mamuka Forest Park. After 3 km we reach Tapapa and Te poi. From there, it’s not too far to the quiet Old-Te Aroha Road, a side road along the Kamai-Mamuka forest to Te Aroha. Night in the village listening to gold prospectors’ stories.
Day 21 Te Aroha – Auckland 52km
Free time in the morning. The small village has attractions that are well worth a look. The bus takes us to the Gulf of the Thames and on the coastal road to Mianda and Clevedon. The day ends in Auckland with a tour of the city.
Day 22 Auckland – Waiheke Island 30-50km
In the morning, a short bike ride to the Auckland ferry. Bicycles come with us on this beautiful crossing to Waiheke. We explore the island, famous for its wine and beautiful bays.
Day 23 Auckland
Return flight to Frankfurt.