Twin Coast Cycle Trail

from 2 days

Planning on riding the Twin Coast Cycle Trail? Contact us for help in planning your itinerary and booking your trip.

The Twin Coast Cycle Trail - Pou Herenga Tai comprises of 87 kilometers of easy cycling linking the inner harbour of the Hokianga to
Opua in the beautiful Bay of Islands. This trail is steeped in historical significance for early New Zealand history.  The trail is noted for its hand-carved wooden pou, which bring to life the stories of the people and place.

The trail passes through some of New Zealand's earliest European and Maori settlements. The full route is now open, providing great options for short day excursions, or a leisurely two-day experience for people wanting to complete the whole route. The trail can be riden in either direction. We describe it here in four short sections, heading east to west.

Opua to Otiria (16 km)

This easy section is a great one for families, with an optional journey on Gabriel, a vintage steam train. After setting off from the port of Opua with a coastal section and pleasing views over the Bay of Islands, the trail soon leaves the coast and follows an old rail line to Taumarere, where you have the choice of cycling on alongside the track, or jumping abroad the Gabriel for the final 3 km into Kawakawa. After checking out Kawakawa's famous Hundertwasser toilets, continue alongside the active rail line for 6 km through to Otiria

Otiria to Kaikohe (27km)

This section takes you over some beautiful historic rail bridges that have been restored for use on the trail. The route follows alongside Ngapipito Rd, with a short detour of 500m currently in place where you use the road before jumping back on the trail. After passing the Kaikohe Aerodrome, you have just 6km left into town (Kaikohe), which provides accomodation options for those riding the trail over two days. Kaikohe features sites of early Maori-European contact and conflict. Be sure to check out Heritage Kaikohe with its museum of early settlement and transport.

Kaikohe to Okaihau (14km)

This section follows an old railway track was built on the ancient pathways and trails the Maori used to travel from coast to coast. The same trails were used later by the missionaries. Early into the day's ride, you'll reach an 80m tunnel, part of the old rail corridor. Beyond the tunnel the trail continues north, skirting past Lake Omapere - Northland's largest lake which is also significant in Maori mythology. It is not much further to the village of Okaihau, a hub of early agricultural settlement and development. There are still a few shops here for grabbing a well-earned snack or drink.

After leaving Okaihau, the trail follows sections of an old railway corridor crossing through an 80m
tunnel. The old railway track was built on the ancient pathways and trails the Maori used to travel
from East to West from coast to coast. The same trails were used later by the missionaries. The
trail passes Lake Omapere, Northlands largest lake which is also significant in Maori mythology and
a number of wonderful stories are to be told on the Pou Pou. The entire Twin Coast Cycle Trail is
unique in that Pou Pou, carved wooden statues made from local trees to bring to life the stories
the landscapes and local people.
Okaihau to Mangungu Mission (30km)

This is the hardest of the sections on the trail (Grade 3), but rewarding for those willing and able to complete it. There has been a lot of investment to build new boardwalks through mangroves and coastal wetlands. It follows the Utakura River on its decent down to Horeke on the inner Hokianga Harbour. Don't end it here though! Another 3km will get you out to the Mangungu, a Wesleyan mission house from the 1830's and an important site for the Treaty of Waitangi.

There is plenty of history to discover right along this trail of discovery in the Far North, a ride suitable for most abilities.

Note: Although generally fine, there have been some reports of bike theft, so we recommend locking your bikes when you stop for a break.

The tourist mecca of Paihia is the easiest and arguably nicest place to access the trail from. We suggest you book yourself in at one of the hostels/hotels in town, and after a day exploring Paihia and Waitangi, set off on your journey!

You can grab a bus from Auckland to Paihia, an approximately 4 hour journey, leaving regularly from Auckland.

Outrigger Motel
Outrigger Motel is located in Paihia in the beautiful Bay of Islands - near the finish (or starting) point for the Twin Coast Cycle Trail. We offer motel accommodation in the heart of central Paihia, walking distance to botique shops, cozy cafes, beautiful beaches and the tour and information centre.
Kingsgate Hotel Autolodge Paihia
The Kingsgate Hotel Autolodge Paihia is located in the beautiful Bay of Islands and is the ideal place to base yourself while riding the Twin Coast Cycle Trail. The hotel is an easy three and a half hours drive away from Auckland.
Admirals View Lodge
Quality Self-Contained Accommodation
Launch your exploration of 'NZbyBike' in The Historic Far North! Start with the Okaihau-Kaikohe leg of The Far North Cycle Trail. Stay with us in central Paihia at Admiral's View Lodge and cycle around the 'Jewel of the North' which is Paihia, ride up to The Waitangi Treaty Grounds, even...
88 Lodge Bed and Breakfast
Perfectly located for the Bay of Islands and all Northland. Minutes from the some of the best beaches, golf courses, countryside, coastline and activities in the world.
Phone Number: 094078288
Bellrock Lodge
For spectacular views come to Bellrock Lodge which is on the hill overlooking the bay and the lovely village of Russell, it is only a 5 min stroll to the village and wharf.
Phone Number: 094037422
Kerikeri Homestead Motel
Nice quiet 12 Unit motel located in the township of kerikeri. We are centrally located and are very close to amenities and a specialist bike shop should the need arise.
Phone Number: 09 4077063
Culture North
Culture North provides a range of Maori cultural experiences giving you the opportunity to interact with Maori as a living, vibrant culture.
Salt Air Ltd
We offer stunning flights around the beautiful Bay of Islands including helicopter and fixed wing Scenic flights from Auckland to Cape Reinga, specialising in the Far North and the Bay of Islands.
Pupu Rangi Nature Sanctuary
Phone Number: +64275316182