Start your journey in Auckland and travel up the west coast via the scenic Twin Coast Discovery Highway to avoid roadworks and busy alternative routes.


Day 1 – Auckland to Omapere, Hokianga (3 hr 45 min, 266km)

·        Depart Auckland early in the morning and prepare for a full day of travel and sightseeing.

·        Take SH1 North of Auckland towards Whangarei.

·        Stop at the quirky Eutopia Café in Kaiwaka for a coffee break and for the cheese lovers, the Kaiwaka Cheese Shop is right next door.

·        Approximately 10km after Kaiwaka turn off SH1 onto Twin Coast Discovery Highway SH12 (signs for Maungaturoto / Dargaville).

·        Stop at The Kauri Museum in Matakohe and learn about the fascinating history of kauri forestry, sawmilling and gumdigging in Northland. There is also a café opposite the museum which is a great place to stop for lunch.

·        Hop back in the car and head to Waipoua Forest (1 hr 30 min, 108km drive) to visit Tane Mahuta – ‘Lord of the Forest’ New Zealand’s largest known standing kauri tree. Along the way you will pass through the rural towns of Ruawai and Dargaville known for growing kumara. If you have an extra day up your sleeve you could cycle the Kaihu Valley Trail.

·        Arrive at the site of Tane Mahuta. Follow the track from the roadside and within a few minutes’ walk you will be standing in front of the ancient giant estimated to be between 1,250 and 2,500 years old. There are Kaitiaki (guardians) on the track daily who are happy to share information about Tane Mahuta and other kauri found in Waipoua Forest. The track is open from 8am to 4pm daily. The gate to the track is locked at night.

·        From here you will make your way to Opononi to Manea Footprints of Kupe (23min – 23.1km drive) for your final activity of the day.

·        Manea offers you a unique cultural encounter, journeying into Te Ao Māori, the Māori world. Enjoy a 75-minute multisensory journey of guided storytelling – through art, taonga (cultural treasures), film, performance, digital interaction, and the splendour of Hokianga’s natural surroundings.

·        Head to the recently refurbished The Sands Hotel, Omapere. It’s here that you will spend the night. There is a restaurant on site so you won’t need to worry about driving anywhere else today.


   Day 2 – Kaikohe to Opua on Pou Herenga Tai Twin Coast Cycle Trail 

·        After an early breakfast at the hotel. Drive to Kaikohe (40 min, 48.9km).

·        9.00 am: Arrive in Kaikohe and collect your bike from one of our Kaikohe-based Bike Hire companies. Confirm the time and location of shuttle pick-up in Opua and check Bay of Islands Vintage Railway train schedule and current ticket prices.

·        Ride to the entrance of the Cycle Trail on Station Road, Kaikohe (opposite Kaikohe Refuse Centre).

·        Ride from Kaikohe to Kawakawa (Grade 1 & 2, 34km, 3 – 4 hours)

·        Kawakawa is a great place to stop for lunch and do some exploring. Visit the famous Hundertwasser toilets and pop next door to Te Hononga – Hundertwasser Memorial Park where you can find out more about this world-renowned Austrian artist who spent 30 years living in this small town.

·        Ride 3.5km to Taumarere and board the Bay of Islands Vintage Railway train at Taumarere Station.

**For experienced cyclists who do not want to take the train, there is an alternative road route between Kawakawa and Opua**

·        Depart the train at Te Ake Ake and ride 4.5km to Opua.

·        Wait for your shuttle at Opua Marina. Relax in the shuttle while your driver transports you back to Kaikohe.

·        Check into your accommodation and grab some dinner from a local eatery

TIP: If you have time, be sure to book a slot at Ngawha Springs. A bathe in the geothermal waters does wonders for tired muscles. 


Day 3 – Kaikohe to Horeke on Pou Herenga Tai Twin Coast Cycle Trail

·        Collect your bike from one of our Kaikohe based Bike Hire companies. Confirm time and location of shuttle pick up in Horeke.

·        Ride to the entrance of the Cycle Trail on Station Road, Kaikohe (beside Kaikohe Refuse Centre).

·        Ride from Kaikohe to Ōkaihau (Grade 1 & 2, 14km, 1 – 2 Hours)

·        Ōkaihau is the perfect place to stop for a drink and bite to eat. Sapphire Cafe offers barista-made coffee and a selection of homemade cabinet options and a full a-la-carte menu. Be sure to pay a visit to Settlers Way General Store, where you will find beautiful gifts, a wide selection of old-fashioned sweets, and fresh fruit ice cream.

·        Ride from Ōkaihau to Horeke (Grade 2 & 3, 28km, 2 – 3 Hours)

·        Along the way be sure to stop at Snow’s Farm. Here you will find a lovely picnic rest area beside a river and the Country Food Kiosk (closed in winter), a small shack selling homemade scones and refreshing smoothies. They don’t have EFTPOS facilities so make sure you have some cash on hand.  

·        Next stop is Horeke! Ride to Māngungu Mission House.

·        Explore this important heritage site that overlooks the picturesque Hokianga Harbour as you wait for your shuttle. Māngungu Mission was the site of the third signing of Te Tiriti o Waitangi.

      If you would like to extend your cycling journey, you can catch the Ranui boat cycle transport over to the quaint settlement of Kohukohu. Stay in one of New Zealand’s oldest rooms at the Historic Kohukohu Villa. Top Trail Bike Hire has an all-inclusive package that includes this extension. 

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