trip
Plan your active adventure.View relaxed booking conditions.
5
Moderate
Activities
  • 8 day self-guided cycle
Accommodation
  • 7 nights comfort level
  • Superior and economy levels available
Meals
  • 7 Breakfasts

8 Days$USD

Hit the trails with confidence

Flexible Cancellations
Stress free booking, learn more about our flexible terms

COVID-19 safety measures
Read our Covid-19 travel policy and what we're doing to keep you safe

Remote adventures
means social distancing comes naturally

Small groups only
Guided group sizes are strictly limited to maximum 16 people, average of 8-10


 
 
Trip Code: TJFT

Trip highlights


  • Cycle the full 152km Otago Central Rail Trail from Middlemarch to Clyde
  • Explore the tunnels and viaducts of the Poolburn Gorge and Ida Valley
  • Ride through the stunning Cromwell Gorge on the new Lake Dunstan Trail
  • Follow the mighty Clutha River/Mata-Au through dramatic gorges, past orchards and lush farmland
  • Discover old gold mining relics through the Roxburgh Gorge
  • Enjoy a jet boat transfer from Shingle Creek to Doctors Point
  • Experience the local 'southern hospitality' of Central Otago

The complete Central Otago cycling experience, combining the full Otago Central Rail Trail, Lake Dunstan Trail, Roxburgh Gorge Trail and Clutha Gold Trail.

Over 8 days, you'll encounter the iconic tunnels and viaducts of the Ida Valley and Poolburn Gorge, the picturesque gorges of the mighty Clutha Mata-Au River, local vineyards and restaurants and plentiful gold mining history.

The itinerary begins in Middlemarch (the Dunedin end of the Otago Central Rail Trail) and finishes in Lawrence at the end of the Clutha Gold Trail. A shuttle from Dunedin can be added at the start and end of your trip.

Extra activities such as curling in Naseby, Hayes Engineering Works and a wine tour fit perfectly into this slower paced itinerary.

We'll move your luggage each day, book the best suited accommodation and transport you where you need to be. All you need to do is pedal and unwind from everyday life.

Scroll down to view the full itinerary, select your dates and fill out our booking form (please note this is tentative).


A morning briefing and bike fitting at our Middlemarch depot will get you set for your first day of cycling on the Otago Central Rail Trail. Meet us in Middlemarch or you can add on a shuttle from Dunedin. You're first day will take you through the Strath Taieri Valley, below the long flat-topped Rock and Pillar mountain range. After 23km you'll pass the site of the 1943 Hyde railway disaster before reaching Hyde itself. Stay the night in Hyde, or continue on to Kokonga (14.5km) or Waipiata (24.5km) depending on your preference or accommodation availability.

Meals:  Nil

Today you'll head through 'Art Deco' Ranfurly before riding west across the open Maniatoto Plains. Here you'll reach Wedderburn, and your accommodation for the night. The iconic green Goods Shed and original Wedderburn station are features of this small township. This afternoon is a great opportunity to visit Naseby to go curling at the famous Naseby Indoor Curling Rink Cycle (add to your itinerary).

Meals:  B

After breakfast, you'll gently climb to the highest point on the trail, crossing the 45° south latitude twice, as you head towards Oturehua. Make sure you visit Gilchrist's Store before continuing a short distance along the trail to Hayes Engineering Works for a tour, or an early lunch. From here, you'll enter one of the most iconic sections of the Otago Central Rail Trail, featuring historic tunnels and viaducts through the Ida Valley and Poolburn Gorge. Stay the night in Lauder or Omakau.

Meals:  B

The last section of the trail takes you through to the historic settlement of Clyde, down Tiger Hill, through Chatto Creek and Alexandra. A 5km loop to Ophir from Omakau is highly recommended, with historic wooden and stone buildings from the gold-mining era and the iconic suspension bridge. Stay the night Clyde.

Meals:  B

Meet at our Clyde depot in the morning for a shuttle through to Cromwell to start the Lake Dunstan Trail. From Cromwell you'll ride past the Cromwell Heritage Precinct before cycling through the Bannockburn wine-country and through the stunning Cromwell Gorge. A stop at the coffee boat along the way is a must (if it's there on the day). Stay the night in Clyde.

Meals:  B

After breakfast you'll set off on the the river trail to Alexandra. From here, the trail makes its way down the Roxburgh Gorge to Doctors Point Boat Ramp. Here you will meet with a local boat operator who will transfer you to Shingle Creek. Relax on board the boat while you take in the stunning scenery and history of the area. At Shingle Creek the trail continues to Lake Roxburgh Village. Take a look at the Roxburgh Dam Lookout with its great photo opportunity. Accommodation this night is in the Lake Roxburgh Village.

Meals:  B

Today’s ride starts from Roxburgh township which is famous for fruit orchards that serve up a splash of colour in every season. Roxburgh is also the home of famous Jimmy’s Pie shop. Clutha Gold trail starts here and follows the sparking Clutha River/Mata-Atu to Millers Flat where you will enjoy lunch at Faigans Store (20km). Towards the end of this section the trail cuts across pastoral farmland to reach Millers Flat. This wee town started life as a stop on the branch railway line to Dunedin which closed in 1968.

Meals:  B

Starting in Dunedin, After breakfast, set off, on the trail that follows the river through the Beaumont Gorge before leaving the Clutha River/Mata Au and heading inland through rolling farmland. Parts of this route follow an old rail bed through Tunnel Hill and onto your final destination of the historic gold-mining town of Lawrence. This was where gold was first discovered in New Zealand and is an interesting town to explore. There will be time for lunch before your mid-afternoon transport back to Clyde.

Meals:  B


Inclusions

  • Standard bike hire for 8 days including helmet, repair kit and odometer (e-bike upgrade available)
  • 7 nights comfort accommodation on twin share basis (superior upgrade available)
  • Shuttle from Clyde to Cromwell to start the Lake Dunstan Trail
  • Jet boat transfer and history tour
  • 7 x breakfasts
  • Luggage transfers each day (weight limit of 15kg)
  • Detailed trip itinerary and map
  • $5 Donation to the Haehaeata National Heritage Trust
  • Panniers (optional extra)

  • Extra transport (e.g. to/from Dunedin or Queenstown)
  • Meals not mentioned in the itinerary
  • Optional activities and upgrades
  • Personal expenses
  • Travel insurance

Accommodation


Bike information


Trail Surface


Departure dates

Departs daily

* Guaranteed status denotes minimum trip numbers have been met, however the trips operation will be subject to there being no COVID-19 restrictions or other government travel advisories. Please contact us for further information.


Dates or itinerary don't fit?

Create a custom made itinerary for the perfect adventure. Choose when you travel, what you see and where you go.

Total Priceper person from

$USD

Options & Supplements*
  • Hayes Engineering Works TourUSD$11
  • Backcountry 4WD tripUSD$34
  • Transport from Dunedin to MiddlemarchUSD$60
  • Naseby Curling and TransportUSD$70
  • Transport from Lawrence to DunedinUSD$70
  • St Bathans & Cambrian TourUSD$80
  • Electric Bike UpgradeUSD$300
  • Single Supplement (Standard)USD$530
*Prices listed are per person

Essential Information

Ready to book? Make sure you download and read the detailed 8 Day - Central Otago Full Monty 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.


Trip reviews


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

Responsible travel is at the heart of every program we offer as a fundamental and long held philosophy. When you book one of our 100% carbon offset adventures you’re supporting true sustainability in the protection of local communities, natural environments and wildlife.

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.

Positive Impact Travel

By joining this trip you are directly supporting positive impact projects in line with the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

We’ve offset the carbon emitted by this trip by purchasing credits that support important projects that address the UN’s seventeen SDGs, like reducing poverty, affordable and clean energy, reducing hunger, clean water and climate action.

Proceeds from this adventure purchase carbon credits through the world’s largest and most awarded carbon project developer, South Pole, which are invested into projects accelerating the transition to renewable energy sources in developing countries.

Supported projects are based on internationally recognised standards and are third-party audited. They entail a series of positive impacts on the ground, which benefit local communities and ecosystems, that are aligned with the UN Sustainable Development Goals.

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