9 days
North Island, New Zealand

What is happiness? This is our way of happiness!

This MTB journey takes you for a 9 days exploration tour of the best backcountry on the North Island! We will be riding pure MTB through all manner of landscapes – volcanoes, pristine rivers, stunning lakes and ancient forest. To sum it all up, a single track kingdom awaits you on this remote island!

What is more, to top up your unforgettable New Zealand MTB journey, there will be great local food, excellent accommodations, first-class guides and also a fridge that’s always stocked with cold drinks!

NOTICE: This trip is graded 3 on all trails and is suitable for intermediate riders. Groups will be up to 6 pax only.

DEPARTURE/RETURN LOCATION Rotorua Regional Airport (New Zealand)
DEPARTURE TIME as per request
RETURN TIME as per request
WEAR Comfortable bike and athletic clothing, sport shoes (biking shoes), jacket and sunscreen
full suspension MTB – Marin Hawke Hill 2 or similar (All bikes have dropper seats, and come with flat pedals.)
mountain bike trail guiding on all rides
all ground transport and shuttles
24/7 assistance and help
all basic bike maintenance and on trail bike maintenance
all meals as per itinerary
airfare (we can help you purchase the best ticket possible)
travel and activity insurance
personal safety and cycling equipment insurance
tips are optional and not included in price
optional activities not scheduled by Bike Hike Tours (free day activities)
You are welcome to bring your own bike, pedal, helmet and other gear if you wish!

Day 1 – Arrival to Rotorua

Our trip begins in Rotorua  – the capital of mountain biking in New Zealand. You’ll see what we mean when we head into “the Redwoods”, as there’s a trail to suit anyone, and no MTB trip to New Zealand is complete without descending into the world famous Redwoods!

Depending on how jetlagged you will be, we will plan our day ahead and hit the perfect trail in Whakarewarewa Forest. Or how some people call it – a MTB wonderland! A single-track kingdom!  There are so many different types of features and descents, from flowy berms, to jumps through ferns and rooty wild rides. The forest offers one of the oldest MTB networks in the country, with master crafted trails and fantastic scenery. It is no wonder Rotorua is renowned among mountain bikers as a premier riding destination.

Accommodation: Okere Falls Lake House

Ride time: 3-5 hours

Distance: up to you

Meals: (L, D)


Day 2 – Ride Whirinaki Forest

After the breakfast of champions, we’ll head south to Whirinaki Forest in the morning. This forest captures everything that North Island’s riding is all about – tight, winding singletrack through lush sub-canopy tree-ferns and incredible native forests. On such trails, even when you’re riding slow, it feels like you’re going fast! There are some HUGE emergent podocarp trees here, along with an abundance of native birds, and arguably the largest population of native Kaka (which is the North Island’s own forest parrot). This place is as wild as it can get! We’ll stop at a hot spring on the way back to Rotorua and celebrate another day of epic riding.

Accommodation: Okere Falls Lake House

Ride time: 4 hours

Distance: 10 miles or more if you’re up for it.

Climb:  1000 ft, Descent: 1000 ft

Meals: (B,L,D)


Day 3 – Free day in Rotorua

Rotorua is the cultural heart of New Zealand and a fantastic place to explore, given the variety of sports options available – from zip lining, to lake cruises & rafting. We can point you in the right direction depending on your preferences and help you reserve any activity you are interested in. There is also an option to relax this day if you prefer to take it easy and be rested for the following days riding! For those who are keen, we’ll have our bike guide and guru hold a bike maintenance workshop today, to go over our bikes and satisfy our need to tinker with our bikes. It’s good wholesome bike-nerd fun!

Accommodation: Okere Falls Lake House

Meals: (B)


Day 4 – Ride the Timber Trail (Pureora to Piropiro)

We will start our day with a breakfast and after that drive south of Rotorua and through the volcanic heartland of the North Island. The road will bring us to the beginning of the Timber Trail – one of the most iconic multi-day backcountry MTB rides in New Zealand. After a final thorough check of our bikes and gear, we’ll head into the wild starting from Pureora. A single track will lead us through a dense mossy forest, crossing numerous high suspension bridges over some amazing forest canyons. There’s a sting in the tail on the first half of today’s ride  – a 1640 ft gradual ascent through cloud forest and mist, straight out of Lord of the Rings. After a short break at the summit of Mt Pureora taking in the epic views, it’s an equally gradual descent down to Piropiro. Back in the evening, we will relax in our comfortable lodging and taste some hearty food and a well-deserved drink.

Accommodation: Timber Trail Lodge

Ride time: 4-5 hours

Distance: 25 miles

Climb:  1640 ft, Descent: 1770 ft

Meals: (B, L, D)


Day 5 – Ride the Timber Trail (Piropiro to Ongarue)

We will enjoy the day, riding on a single track through an epic forest (again!), over spectacular suspension bridges and past weird, however wonderful rock formations and remnants of New Zealand’s colonial history. An all-around fun day on the best 2/3 grade trails in the world. After the 5km (3 miles) mark, the significant uphill section is behind us and it’s all about the descent through the forest now. You will see New Zealand’s highest suspension bridge, and experience the only rideable railway spiral in the world – a relic of New Zealand’s early logging pioneers. At the end of the trail we’ll head to National Park village, at the foot of Mt Ruapehu.

Accommodation: National Park Lodge

Ride time: 5 hours

Distance: 27 miles

Climb:  1300 ft, Descent: 2500 ft

Meals: (B, L, D)


Day 6 – Ride the Bridge to Nowhere into Whanganui National Park

Get ready for the best day of backcountry wilderness! After a short drive from Ohakune, we’ll arrive at the beginning of the Bridge to Nowhere trail which kicks off with a gradual climb into the bush. Be prepared to put your bike into a granny gear and stop from time to time to check out the views behind you! After this short climb through a variety of grassland and bushes, the hard work is done. Now it’s only down down down, down into the deep and dense forest valley, with creek crossings and swing bridges galore! After some time in the valley, the Bridge to Nowhere appears, out of nowhere, of course! Make sure you have plenty of room left on your memory card – photo ops like this don’t come around that often. The Bridge to Nowhere (AKA Morgans Bridge) was built in 1936 in the hope that settlers would stay in the area, but country living proved too difficult for even the roughest of pioneers and the area was abandoned – to our benefit! Another 20 minutes of riding brings us on the edge of the Whanganui River, where a jetboat will pick us up for a ride down the river and back to our waiting vehicle. We’ll return to Ohakune for the evening.

Accommodation: Ohakune Lodge

Ride time:  5-7  hours

Distance: 22 miles

Climb:  1000 ft, Descent: 1800 ft

Meals: (B, L, D)


Day 7 – Ride Old Coach Road or free time in Ohakune

If you can’t stand the thought of being off a bike for the day, we’ll ride the “Old Coach Road” trail – the original rail link road for horse and coach transport built in 1906 to link two sections of the railway that hadn’t been built through the densely forested terrain. By 1909, the rail link had been built, and the trail was left waiting for another 101 years before it was rediscovered for biking. The Old Coach Road is a relatively easy ride and the only mountain bike trail allowed through the beautiful World Heritage listed, Tongariro National Park. The trail offers you spectacular scenery, with a view of Mt Ruapehu at the start of the ride, to the lush native bush sections, followed by the impressive structure of the original Hapuawhenua Viaduct, affording great views of the surrounding native forest.

If you prefer to take it easy today, Ohakune is the perfect place to do it. With Mount Ruapehu looming over the town, there are numerous bush walks around the area. This vibrant small town also offers some great cafes, bars and boutique shops.

Accommodation: Ohakune Lodge

Ride time: 2.5 hours

Distance: 9,3 miles

Grade 2 EASY  : Climb:  300 ft, Descent: 500 ft

Meals: (B, L, D)


Day 8 – Ride the Great Lake Trail, Lake Taupo

We will make our way north this morning, and ride a section of the “Great Lake Trail” that skirts the shores of New Zealand’s largest lake. The riding today will be totally different from the last couple of days!  The incredible wide expansive views out across Lake Taupo and a gradually descending trail with beautifully laid out corners and berms. You will be able to breathe the fresh air in the glorious New Zealand forest and have the opportunity to swim in Lake Taupo’s beautiful waters at the end of the ride in Kinloch. Did we mention the views!?

After our ride, we’ll return to Rotorua, and celebrate a week of amazing North Island riding.

Accommodation: Okere Falls Lake House

Ride time: 2.5-3 hours

Distance: 12 miles

Climb:  400 ft, Descent: 500 ft

Meals: (B, L, D)


Day 9 – Departure day

Unfortunately, this day has arrived. We will have our last breakfast together and after that, some of you will leave for the airport, or if you chose to stay another day, an epic adventure awaits! Optional Heli Biking on the Pakihi Track.

If you’ve chosen to stay on for this extra last day, get ready for the unique heli biking trip in New Zealand, in one of the most beautiful areas in the North Island – the East Cape. After a drive through the native forest and fertile plains of the Bay of Plenty, we’ll board a helicopter (complete with bike racks!) and fly into the densely forested Urutawa Conservation Area. After the drop off by our heli shuttle, we’ll begin our ride on the Pakihi track. If there’s more fun to be had on a video gamey forest trail, we are yet to find it! The mix of a dense forest, spectacular views of the river, cool bridges and non-stop descents make this ride truly out of the box. And what’s best of all, we’ll have it to ourselves! 

At the end of our ride, we’ll head back to Rotorua.

Meals: (B)

We are passionate adventure travelers ourselves. We have spent our lives in search for the ultimate outdoor experiences. You will gain skills in outdoor activities and meet like-minded individuals to share wonderful adventures. Passion and full dedication to details for each itinerary as well as an excellent relationship with our suppliers in Slovenia have built up the Bikehiketours brand.
Your adventure guides are local and experienced professionals who have a real passion for outdoor activities and for the culture and landscape.
Your safety is their number one priority, closely followed by your enjoyment of the tour. They will always be on-hand to answer any questions or requests you may have throughout your trip. We choose our guides for their expertise in outdoor activities. They are experts in their fields.
We only run small group adventures to ensure that everyone has the best experience possible and not get lost in the crowd. There will generally be between seven and 14 people in each group. The minimum number of people we require to run our tours is four.
Our tour caters for a wide age range, typically between 30 and 60 years old, but age is simply a state of mind, as they say, and we welcome anyone over the age of 18! 
Tours are designed at your own pace and you will enjoy no matter what your age.

Each evening your guides will chat with you about the following day’s activities and give you an idea of the sorts of trails you can look forward to. If there’s anything you feel anxious about, your guides will be happy to discuss it with you.
We recommend following a general training in the weeks leading up to your trip.
Your guide will be very happy to give you some bike skills training during your trip to help improve your confidence and your enjoyment of your bike adventure. 

As fellow sports enthusiasts, we understand the comfort you may find in riding with your own gear. Due to things can get a bit challenging when it comes to traveling please consult our booking manager prior to departure.

Q. Will I have to carry my own luggage?
You will never have to worry about your bags on tour. You only need to carry a daypack with you whilst riding. We have a support vehicle and driver who will transfer your luggage to your next accommodation each day, and have it ready and waiting for your arrival.
On your holiday you will be staying in a range of comfortable, welcoming local accommodations, including traditional guest houses, small hotels, and a boutique hotel. For details please consult with your booking manager.
Traveling light is the key. Although the daytime and nighttime temperatures can vary in the mountains, so you must make sure that you have plenty of layers of breathable clothing to ensure that you are always warm enough and can remove a layer if you get too hot. 
You should also bring cycling shorts/trousers, gloves, padded undershorts, waterproof jacket, flip-flops, specific shoes for cycling.
Where the meals are included in Bikehiketours itineraries they are in a group setting. 
Your Bikehiketours guide will also be with you during these scheduled meals. 
During the meals that are not included in the itinerary, you are free to choose where you would like to dine. Your guide will advise you the best places to dine for these meals. You can choose to join with others and decide to dine together somewhere or, if you desire some independent time, you are also always welcome to do your own thing.
Medical insurance is mandatory on all of our holidays. We also recommend trip cancellation insurance. Contact your booking manager and we will help you choose the right plan for your holiday.
Many of our travelers join as singles. We charge single supplement fee to solo travelers for single room use. But don’t worry, we can pair you with another traveler of the same gender if you like.

A single supplement is an additional charge for a private room for guests traveling alone.
The cost of our holidays does not include international airfare. However, we are happy to assist you in booking flights to join with each tour. The prices vary depending on the season and the point of departure.
We can arrange early arrivals and extended visits. We will be happy to provide suggestions and ideas.
The more in advance you book, the greater availability of dates you’ll find.

Attention to the smallest details, expertise, and great local guides are the key to a successful adventure.