NEW Trip – Kyrgyzstan & the Tian Shan MountainsJoin 19 August 2024 Departure

7 Days$2860USD

  • 7 days walking and cycling
  • 3 nights hotel
  • 2 nights farm stay
  • 1 night luxury apartment
  • 5 Dinners
  • 5 Lunches
  • 6 Breakfasts

Traveller Rating



Trip highlights

  • Explore the scenic Kaikoura Peninsula and hinterland by bike and foot
  • View the incredible Giant Sperm Whales on a whale watch cruise from Kaikoura (optional if early morning departure operating)
  • Cycle through the remote Molesworth Station and visit the historic Molesworth Cob Cottage and Acheron Accommodation House
  • Enjoy kiwi hospitality, fine local produce and hot tubs at our Middlehurst Station farm stay
  • Learn about life on a high country station first hand from the farmers on a remote 4WD excursion
  • Soak in the thermal hot pools surrounded by mountains at Hanmer Springs
  • Visit to the Iron Ridge Quarry Sculpture Park and enjoy a wine tasting at an award winning vineyard in the Waipara Valley

From scenic wine regions to surreal mountain landscapes this trip in the Northern Canterbury and Marlborough districts is a delight. Ride a new cycle trail in the emerging wine growing district of Waipara Valley, learn regional history and explore the stunning Kaikoura coastline, dotted with fur seals, there is the option to take an early morning whale watching cruise. We journey through the vast Molesworth Station along isolated roads flanked by rugged mountains and overnight on a remote back country merino sheep farm nestled under Mt. Tapuae-o-Uenuku, the highest mountain outside of the Southern Alps. Before we head back to Christchurch, explore the forest trails and a soak in the therapeutic thermal pools at Hanmer Springs provides a fitting finale to this memorable cycling adventure.

Vast coastal and mountain landscapes, luxury accommodation and friendly welcomes are all part of the package, as is the passion and local knowledge of your guides.

Trip Code: MOL

We meet at one central Christchurch location at 8:00am our adventure starts as we head north through the Waipara Valley wine region – home of international award winning Pinot Noir, Riesling and Chardonnay wines. We enjoy our first bike ride on quiet back roads, visiting the North Canterbury coastline at the picturesque Cathedral Rocks and rugged Gore Bay, before arriving in Cheviot for a relaxed country lunch. Continuing north we travel back to the coast where mountains meet the ocean and arrive into Kaikoura in the late afternoon. We check into our luxurious beachfront hotel, where we will spend the next 3 nights and meet again in the early evening for our first group dinner. Cycling Distance: Motunau to Cheviot via Gore Bay - 38km Accommodation: Sudima Hotel Kaikoura

Meals:  L,D

After breakfast, if the early morning departure is running, we have the option to join a whale watch tour offering a up-close encounter with the world's largest toothed predator the Giant Sperm Whale. We might get to spot any number of Blue, Fin, Sei, Humpback, Minke, Pilot, Orca and Southern Right Whales, Common Dolphins, Bottlenose Dolphins, as well as Elephant Seals and Leopard Seals. The tour lasts around 3 hours and only operates in calm conditions. The rest of the group have time to explore the town and stretch our legs on the stunning Kaikoura Peninsula coastal walk for impressive views of rugged cliff formations, tidal platforms and the Seaward Kaikoura Range. We regroup for lunch and then ride the newly developed Kaikoura cycle trail following the perimeter of the plains under the towering peaks of the Kaikoura Ranges and Mt Fyffe. The trail takes a mix of single track and quiet country roads, some gravel and some paved, through bush and open farmland giving many glimpses of the ocean from above. We return to our hotel and are free to make our own dinner arrangements. Cycling Distance: up to 48km Hiking Distance: Kaikoura Peninsula Walk - 4km Accommodation: Sudima Hotel Kaikoura

Meals:  B

Today's ride follows quiet undulating rural roads alongside the Amuri and Seawards Kaikoura Mountains. After breakfast our ride starts directly from our hotel, we cross the Kowhai River and head towards the hills on the Inland Kaikoura Road. Entering rolling farm country, the route soon crosses from the Kaikoura District to the Hurunui, climbing several inclines and passing over the Conway River and the historic Doone Station and gravesite. The landforms around here still show the effects of the massive November 2016 earthquake, with the road crossing faultlines and scars. From the high point at the Whale Back Saddle it is all downhill to Mt Lyford Village where the lodge will be a welcome sight for refreshments before returning to Kaikoura. In the late afternoon we have free time to explore the township or take a walk on the beach before we meet for dinner. Cycling Distance: Kaikoura to Mt Lyford - 61km Accommodation: Sudima Hotel Kaikoura

Meals:  B,L,D

Today we leave Kaikoura early and drive north to the start of the Awatere valley (approx 1.5 hours) with a short stop at Ohau Point lookout to see fur seals on the rocks below. The next 3 days we travel through stunning back country wilderness including the Molesworth Station, which at 180,787 hectares, is New Zealand's biggest farm and supports the country's largest herd of beef cattle, as well as almost 30 endemic plant species. Our journey to Hanmer Springs follows the Awatere River, then crosses Wards Pass to follow the Acheron to its confluence with the Clarence River. We set off riding along the wide Awatere Valley, surrounded by vineyards. We climb up the valley, through rolling farmscapes where the road turns to gravel and we become dwarfed by the impressive Mt Tapuae-o-Uenuku (2885m) and the massive Inland Kaikoura Ranges. After a steep climb we reach the top of Upcot Saddle, we get a short downhill respite before another climb over a higher saddle brings us to Middlehurst Station, and our comfortable accommodation in the upper valley. e-Bike riders will need to use their battery power conservatively or risk running out of power. Riders will need the fitness and skills to not rely on 'boost mode'. Please speak to your guides for ways to preserve your battery life. No spare batteries are carried nor available. Our support vehicle will always be near by for anyone who wants a breather or wants to cycle a shorter distance. Tonight's farm stay has shared bathroom facilities. We will be welcomed by our hosts with platters and drinks followed by a hearty evening meal prepared by the onsite chef. Cycling Distance: Awatere Road to Middlehurst Station - 68km Accommodation: Middlehurst Station

Meals:  B,D

Today we enjoy a day at Middlehurst Station and are taken by 4WD on an excursion into the high back country. Guided by our hosts, we will learn all about life on the farm, hear interesting stories and the history of the property, while experiencing incredible remote scenery. We stop for 'Smoko' at one of the historic musters huts and have the chance to spot wildlife grazing on the vast skylines. We return to the beautiful Middlehurst Station by mid afternoon. We then have free time to relax, soak in a hot tub surrounded by the amazing mountainous environment before another delicious home cooked evening meal is served. Accommodation: Middlehurst Station

Meals:  B,L,D

After breakfast we say farewell to our hosts to ride into the Molesworth Station, savouring the remoteness of the spectacular landscape around us. Setting away from Middlehurst, we pass the original cob homestead built by John Murphy in 1866 and the gateway to the vast Molesworth Station. We climb to Wards Pass (1145m) and continue across the 250-hectare expanse of Isolated Flat, an outwash plain, bounded by the Awatere Fault. From January until April, masses of tall, white gentian flowers and blue borage can be seen growing colourfully amongst clumps of short tussock and pasture grass. Flanked by mountain ranges the road follows the Acheron River to the historic Acheron House, which was built in 1863 as an overnight stopover in the early stock droving days. On reaching the mighty Clarence River we drive over Jacks Pass, and descend into Hanmer Springs which is our destination tonight. After settling into our comfortable accommodation, you have the option to head to the thermal hot pools for a well deserved soak in the therapeutic waters. We meet again in the evening for our final group dinner to celebrate our weeks cycling achievements. Cycling Distance: Middlehurst Station to Acheron Cottage - up to 80km Accommodation: St James Apartments Hanmer Springs

Meals:  B,L,D

Hanmer Springs is a hub for mountain biking and hiking, and a great place to rest, relax and enjoy the mountain air. This morning we have a choice to ride or walk and to revisit the hot pools depending on our energy levels. Cycle Option: Enjoy riding the tracks in Hanmer Forest, ranging from easy to more technical trails. Hiking Option: A short relaxed walk takes us through the forest to a lookout at Conical Hill. After time for a coffee and snack, we'll leave Hanmer late morning and head to a boutique Waipara vineyard, Georges Road winery, for a tasting and platter lunch, a fitting way to celebrate all we've experienced and achieved. Our final experience is a visit to Iron Ridge Quarry Park, a magical wonderland, with stunning sculptures set against a carefully curated native garden, all under the shadow of breathtaking limestone hills. Here we'll enjoy a guided walk hosted by the owner and sculptor, Raymond Herber. It's a final hour's drive which should see us back in Christchurch around 5pm, where there will be a drop off in the city centre.

Meals:  B,L


  • Tasty cafe breakfasts (x6), gourmet picnic or cafe lunches, including winery lunch (x5), two course restaurant dinners (x5)
  • 4 nights superior hotel accommodation, double or twin share with ensuite bathroom facilities
  • 2 nights farm stay accommodation at Middlehurst Station with shared bathrooms
  • Professional qualified driver/guide
  • 2 professional guides/drivers on trips with 8 or more people
  • 4WD tour on Middlehurst Station exploring the remote high country farm
  • Hot tubs at Middlehurst Station
  • Entry to Iron Ridge Quarry Sculpture Park
  • Wine tasting at a boutique Waipara vineyard
  • Full vehicle support along the trail including trailer for luggage
  • Pre departure information kit to help you plan and prepare

  • International or domestic flights and taxes
  • Arrival and departure transfers
  • Meals not mentioned in the itinerary
  • All beverages, other than breakfast
  • Bike hire (including helmet)
  • Water bottle (help us save the environment and bring your own bike drink bottle)
  • Optional activities (eg. Whale Watching Tour NZ$165 from Kaikoura, entrance to hot pools at Hanmer Springs $40)
  • Personal expenses (eg. phone calls, internet, laundry, shopping etc)
  • Travel insurance
  • Visa (if required)

About Your Leader

Our guides are one of our biggest assets and we pride ourselves on their level of quality and high standards. Once the trip reaches 8 people, we provide you with two of our expert guides to maximise your enjoyment and overall experience. You’ll know you’re in safe hands as all of our guides are certified in first aid and CPR and many of them are trained bike mechanics. They come from all walks of life but our guides have a common desire to give you the best possible experience, fun and lots of fond memories to take home with you. Learn more about our guides on our team page at


Bike information

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Priceper person from


Options & Supplements*
  • Whale Watch from KaikouraUSD$130
  • Bike RentalUSD$150
  • Ebike RentalUSD$420
  • Single Supplement - Limited to 2 per departureUSD$770
*Prices listed are per person

Essential Information

Ready to book? Make sure you download and read the detailed Kaikoura & Molesworth High Country Cycle trip notes which contains all the essential information you need to know before booking. Once you’ve booked, we will supply you with a Pre-Departure document which contains a detailed gear list and other important information to help you prepare for your adventure ahead.

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Why travel with us

Award Winning Adventures

Enhancing your journey with authentic experiences, genuine cultural exchange and real exploration are the focal points on all of our adventures. In 2019, we were crowned by our peers as the best in adventure travel at The Travel Awards in Sydney.

Thoughtful Travel

Our vision is to leave the world a better place by following our sustainable active outdoor travel charter. All our adventures are 100% carbon offset and our Regenerative 2030 Project aims to integrate ‘regenerative’ projects into every one of our global operations by 2030.

Ultimate Value

 When you book one of our adventures, you will receive quality services at the best prices with plenty of inclusions. There are no hidden costs, single travellers don’t pay more and you’ll enjoy many ‘extra touches’ that ensure your holiday is excellent value for money.

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