My journey in New Zealand lasted about two and a half months. My route followed the incredible Tour Aoetearoa Bike Packing route for the most part, but where possible, when possible I took detours to see other lesser seen parts of the country.
The Tour Aoetearoa was incredible, NZ is really geared towards cycling holidays and in my experience the locals did a really good job of making me feel welcome.
I flew into Christchurch, got a bus south and started my route in Dunedin. I tried to ride out towards Middlemarch to get onto the Otago Rail Trail. I failed, missing multiple turns and managing to shear a pedal.
Overloaded with 5 days of food I headed back and opted for a scenic train up the Taeri Gorge, then rode the rail trail for a few days before reaching Alexandria, Clyde, Cromwell, Bannockburn and up into the Nevis valley.
From the Nevis, i headed south through Winston onto Invercargil then Bluff. From here i followed the coast past Riverton, onwards to Manapouri and towards Te Anau and down to Milford Sound.
I managed to get a lift back to Te Anau, then headed out towards Mavouri Lakes, onwards to Walter Peaks Station, Queenstown and then to Arrowtown before meeting up with my friend Jai just out of Wanaka.
From Wanaka Jai and i rode the whole of the West Coast together, over Haast Pass, the Western Wilderness trail and then up to Greymouth. Where Jai and i parted. Then it was towards Murchison through a few other beautiful towns. and eventually to Nelson.
From Nelson I rode south to link up with the Rainbow Trail, followed that to Hamner Springs and back up through the Molesworth, to Blenheim, then along the coast of Marlborough sounds towards Picton.
The ferry ride took me to Wellington, where I followed the Tour Aoetearoa route most of the way to Whanganui River trail, then branched off towards National Park to visit Tongirero. I made a loop back past Lake Tahoe, then headed over the Timber Trail and linked back onto the Tour Aotearoa route.
It took me through Matamata, onwards to Themes, around the peninsula, onto Auckland, then through a few nice gravel roads north through Reefton, Dargaville and eventually to Cape Reinga.
I rode a total of 4500 Km over 2.5 Months, took about 7 days of rest, 3 punctures, 6 spokes, 4 brake pads, countless smiles, too much food.