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6 Day West Coast and Glaciers Cycle

Days
6

Pricing From
$2595

Difficulty

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Overview

The wild West Coast is not to be missed! Explore the spectacular scenery by bike, bus, train and on foot as we journey from Queenstown to Christchurch. We cycle alongside spectacular alpine lakes before an exhilarating swoop down Haast Pass takes us to the crashing seas of the Tasman Ocean, with its lush rain forest edged roads. This can only be described as cycling at its best.

Trip Highlights

  • Challenge yourself with 6 days of memorable road cycling up the wild West Coast
  • Climb over the Crown Range, NZ's highest road
  • Swoop down Haast Pass on quiet sealed roads
  • Visit Hokitika, craft capital of the West Coast and home to the local green stone (pounamu)
  • Experience the TranzAlpine train crossing the Southern Alps to Christchurch
  • Admire Fox Glacier by helicopter (optional)

Tour Grading:  Medium      

This trip is ideal for Recreational Cyclists. All tours can be adapted by the guides for recreational or stronger cyclists wanting to cover more ground.

"This was our thirteenth bike tour and the best run ever. Bas and Russel were sensational fun, laid back but totally organised." - Lyn Richards, Yarmoutport, USA.

Note - this tour follows our "cycle the best & drive the rest policy" - it is not possible to cycle the whole route. Distances as mentioned below are guidelines, these tours have an element of flexibility and actual distances on the day will depend on the weather, other activities and group & individual fitness. On all our tours strong riders will get as much cycling as they want & slower riders always have the option of a ride in the support vehicle.

West Coast and Glaciers Cycle

Cyclist on the West Coast of New Zealand

West Coast and Glaciers Cycle

Three Cyclists on the West Coast of New Zealand

West Coast and Glaciers Cycle

Group of Cyclists on the West Coast of New Zealand

West Coast and Glaciers Cycle

Lookout Point on the West Coast of New Zealand

West Coast and Glaciers Cycle

Cyclists on the West Coast of New Zealand

West Coast and Glaciers Cycle

Lone cyclist on a road on the West Coast of New Zealand

West Coast and Glaciers Cycle Tour

Lake Wakatipu, Queenstown

West Coast and Glaciers Cycle Tour

Wanaka, New Zealand

West Coast and Glaciers Cycle Tour

Road south from Haast to Makarora, New Zealand

West Coast and Glaciers Cycle Tour

Reflections on Lake Matheson, West Coast, New Zealand

West Coast and Glaciers Cycle Tour

Walk on Fox Glacier, New Zealand

West Coast and Glaciers Cycle Tour

Rainbow over Hokitika, New Zealand

Itinerary

Open All
Day 1Queenstown to Wanaka 45-78km riding distance

Arrive at least the day before and check in to your Queenstown accommodation, to allow for an early start today.

Out from Queenstown we coach through to the old gold-mining town of Arrowtown, where we unload our bikes and cycle a short loop as a familiarisation ride. Strong riders can carry on biking towards the Crown Range, the rest of us head back to Arrowtown for morning tea.

From here we travel by bus and bike over the Crown Range, with a lunch stop at the historic Cardrona Hotel. We continue cycling down the Cardrona Valley into the picturesque alpine village of Wanaka. Late afternoon you have the option of cycling on an easy local trail, the Fishermans Track which follows the banks of the Clutha River or enjoying some time in vibrant Wanaka. (Lunch, Dinner)

Day 2Wanaka to Haast48-105km Riding distance

An early cycle takes us to Lake Hawea. We drive to the top of the Haast Pass and enter the famous West Coast forests. We cycle down through the 'Gates of Haast' on sealed roads to the flats of the Landsborough River for lunch.

Our route continues down the Haast River with its rainforest clad mountain slopes and numerous waterfalls until the days spectacular journey ends on the coast at Haast. An evening walk on the beach provides a chance to watch the sun set into the Tasman Ocean. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

Day 3Haast to Fox Glacier49-115km Riding distance

This morning we cycle peaceful forest roads to Bruce Bay and then onto Fox Glacier. The rest of the day is available for sightseeing in the township as well as providing the chance to take a scenic helicopter flight which is highly recommended. Maybe you would rather a trip to nearby Lake Matheson famous for its reflection views of the Southern Alps, or enjoy any of the local walks in the area. (Breakfast, Lunch)

Day 4Fox Glacier to Franz Josef Glacier25km Riding distance

This morning we walk to the base of the mighty Fox Glacier. For those who want to challenge themselves an optional guided walk will take you onto the face of the glacier as it grinds down through the rainforest. The afternoon sees us cycling another West Coast challenge, the road between Fox and Franz Josef Glacier. (Breakfast, Lunch)

Day 5Franz Josef Glacier to Hokitika 63-113km Riding distance

With some spectacular views as a backdrop, we cycle through the podocarp forests to hidden Lake Ianthe. Throughout the day we will cycle and explore the numerous lakes, valleys and gold mines, as we continue up the coast to the rainforests of Lakes Kaniere and Mahinapua and the quiet roads and tracks that surround them. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

Day 6Hokitika to Christchurch56km Riding distance

From Hokitika township we travel by bus and bike on quiet inland roads through native forests to Lake Brunner. There are stunning lakeside views and swims before more scenic quiet roads take us back the West Coast highway. Here we stop to enjoy our final meal together at the recently restored historic Jackson's Tavern.

If you can drag yourself away from the ambience in the pub, there is the option to cycle some more through sweeping rural landscapes and beneath rugged mountain peaks to Arthurs Pass. Here we board the TranzAlpine Express train for a leisurely scenic trip back into Christchurch where our coach will meet and deliver you to your Christchurch accommodation. (Breakfast, Lunch)

Cost per person

November 2020 - April 2021

  • Twin: From NZ$2,595
  • Single supplement: NZ$685

Bike Rental: NZ$300

E-bike Rental: NZ$480

Itinerary

Open All
Day 1Queenstown to Wanaka 45-78km riding distance

Arrive at least the day before and check in to your Queenstown accommodation, to allow for an early start today.

Out from Queenstown we coach through to the old gold-mining town of Arrowtown, where we unload our bikes and cycle a short loop as a familiarisation ride. Strong riders can carry on biking towards the Crown Range, the rest of us head back to Arrowtown for morning tea.

From here we travel by bus and bike over the Crown Range, with a lunch stop at the historic Cardrona Hotel. We continue cycling down the Cardrona Valley into the picturesque alpine village of Wanaka. Late afternoon you have the option of cycling on an easy local trail, the Fishermans Track which follows the banks of the Clutha River or enjoying some time in vibrant Wanaka. (Lunch, Dinner)

Day 2Wanaka to Haast48-105km Riding distance

An early cycle takes us to Lake Hawea. We drive to the top of the Haast Pass and enter the famous West Coast forests. We cycle down through the 'Gates of Haast' on sealed roads to the flats of the Landsborough River for lunch.

Our route continues down the Haast River with its rainforest clad mountain slopes and numerous waterfalls until the days spectacular journey ends on the coast at Haast. An evening walk on the beach provides a chance to watch the sun set into the Tasman Ocean. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

Day 3Haast to Fox Glacier49-115km Riding distance

This morning we cycle peaceful forest roads to Bruce Bay and then onto Fox Glacier. The rest of the day is available for sightseeing in the township as well as providing the chance to take a scenic helicopter flight which is highly recommended. Maybe you would rather a trip to nearby Lake Matheson famous for its reflection views of the Southern Alps, or enjoy any of the local walks in the area. (Breakfast, Lunch)

Day 4Fox Glacier to Franz Josef Glacier25km Riding distance

This morning we walk to the base of the mighty Fox Glacier. For those who want to challenge themselves an optional guided walk will take you onto the face of the glacier as it grinds down through the rainforest. The afternoon sees us cycling another West Coast challenge, the road between Fox and Franz Josef Glacier. (Breakfast, Lunch)

Day 5Franz Josef Glacier to Hokitika 63-113km Riding distance

With some spectacular views as a backdrop, we cycle through the podocarp forests to hidden Lake Ianthe. Throughout the day we will cycle and explore the numerous lakes, valleys and gold mines, as we continue up the coast to the rainforests of Lakes Kaniere and Mahinapua and the quiet roads and tracks that surround them. (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)

Day 6Hokitika to Christchurch56km Riding distance

From Hokitika township we travel by bus and bike on quiet inland roads through native forests to Lake Brunner. There are stunning lakeside views and swims before more scenic quiet roads take us back the West Coast highway. Here we stop to enjoy our final meal together at the recently restored historic Jackson's Tavern.

If you can drag yourself away from the ambience in the pub, there is the option to cycle some more through sweeping rural landscapes and beneath rugged mountain peaks to Arthurs Pass. Here we board the TranzAlpine Express train for a leisurely scenic trip back into Christchurch where our coach will meet and deliver you to your Christchurch accommodation. (Breakfast, Lunch)

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