New Zealand

Storm the South Island on this mountain bike tour New Zealand

With some of the planet’s most diverse microclimates jam-packed into one little country, which now plays host to some of the world’s highest profile mountain bike events, every day of our mountain bike tour New Zealand will bring you exciting new environments to explore, from the rain forest of the Old Ghost Road, to the arid landscapes of Alexandra.

Ross Bell travelled to New Zealand with us to shoot our mountain bike tour New Zealand and, despite carrying a huge weight in camera gear, was blown away by the diversity and quality of the riding in New Zealand. Click through the gallery to see what trail gems await you on the South Island…

Is this mountain bike tour New Zealand for you?

We want you to have the best experience in New Zealand, so it’s important to be sure that this is the perfect mountain bike adventure, with the right level of challenge, for you.

You’re an experienced mountain biker, riding at least twice a week through the season and comfortable on: long climbs on double and singletrack; technical singletrack descents; rough, rocky trails, some with exposure; and muddy forest trails. Read more on our intermediate+ skill level.

TOUR DATES 2020

  • 8 – 17 February
  • 20 – 29 March

Contact us if you would like to create your own private group tour (minimum 6 riders).

Tour highlights

Apart from world-class mountain biking, here are some other special moments you can look forward to on your mountain bike tour New Zealand:

  • Staying in a mountain hut overlooking the rainforest canopy
  • Letting lifts + gravity do the work at Cardona bike park
  • Driving the beautiful West Coast road
  • Visiting Franz Josef Glacier
  • Savouring delicious local food and craft beers
  • Sipping world-famous New Zealand wines

Yeti Cycles: Proven in New Zealand

Mountain Bike Tour New Zealand Itinerary

The itinerary for our incredible mountain bike tour New Zealand has been designed to flow perfectly, maximising your time on the best trails in the most spectacular spots in the South Island, whilst minimising time in the van.

+Arrival in New Zealand + pre-trip acclimatisation

If you’re travelling a long way or across several time zones to New Zealand then we recommend arriving into Christchurch a day or two early to allow your body to adjust and to make sure any flight or luggage days don’t spoil your trip. It’s also worth remembering that you fly out of Queenstown at the end of the adventure, so you may want a day to explore there at the end of the trip too.
+Day 1 - Kia Ora Christchurch! Ride in Port Hills

The first day of your mountain bike tour New Zealand starts off bright and early at 8am, when our guide will come to meet you at your hotel. After meeting everyone in your group, we’ll travel to our local base so you can build your bike or get kitted out with a rental.

Once everyone’s geared up, we’ll pack the van and hit the road. Before we set off your guide will give you a tour briefing over a light lunch. You’ll be given a detailed run-through of the trip’s itinerary, and our guide will be happy to field any questions you may have about the adventure ahead.

Once your appetite’s been sated, it’s time to feed your hunger for adventure. We’ll start off slowly with a four-hour coastal acclimatisation ride around the Port Hills just outside Christchurch. After your first taster of the amazing flow trail here in New Zealand, you’ll then get the chance to take a dip in the South Pacific at a secluded beach popular for surfing. You’ll have plenty of time to cool off with a cold drink, before we check in to our accommodation for the night.

After a quick shower we’ll meet back up for a few beers and our first dinner together in New Zealand.

Distance cycled: 25km (app. 4 hours)
Accommodation: Small motel
Meals included: Dinner

+Day 2 - Craigieburn Flow Trails

Eat well and muster up all your strength over breakfast, because today we hit Craigieburn – world-renowned for its flowing singletrack trails that weave and wind through the area’s beautiful beech forests.

The mountainous terrain of the Craigieburn Range has spectacular views that rival the grand majesty of the American Rockies, so we’ll spend most of the day riding through and enjoying the varied trails Craigieburn has to offer. Mountain biking with these incredible views will take your breath away.

Not wanting to miss a minute of this stunning landscape, we’ll stay in the heart of the Southern Alps, enjoying drinks on the deck of our mountain lodge as the sun disappears behind the hills.

When we’ve had our fill of stargazing we’ll bunk up in our shared accommodation and get ready for the start of something truly epic tomorrow.

Distance cycled: 40km (app. 5 hours)
Accommodation: Porter’s Lodge
Meals included: B, L, D

+Day 3 - Into the rainforest on the Old Ghost Road

The aim of our New Zealand adventure is to show you the best the country has to offer mountain bikers. After revelling in the fabulous singletrack climbs and descents of Craigieburn, today you’ll need to have your climbing legs with you for the first stage of your two-day adventure through the rainforest.

You’ll step out of the van right into the jungle at the foot of New Zealand’s longest singletrack – the Old Ghost Road. At a fairly easygoing incline of 2%, you’ll winch your way up the bench cut forest track to the ridge peak at 1400m.

At 28km, the trail may be long, but it’s also long-standing: originally trekked by gold miners seeking their fortune in the 1870s. While you may not find gold along the trail today, you can still enjoy the countless historical treasures dotted along the path as we pass through old mining sites and derelict ghost towns.

Once the trees thin out and we hit the ridge line, you’ll get a breath-taking panoramic vista of the rainforests below, sprawling out as far as the eye can see. By the time we reach our home for the night, Ghost Lake hut, your provisions will all have been dropped off so you can settle in for a quiet night high above the rainforest. We’ll wash, change and grab a beer on the terrace as we watch the sun set over the rainforest as daylight gives way to an awe-inspiring night sky.

Sitting at an altitude of 1200m, you’ll gaze out into the depths of the universe with unparalleled clarity, just as the miners would have over a century before.

Please note: Ghost Lake Hut is a basic accommodation in the wilderness of the New Zealand rain forest. You’ll be sleeping on basic beds with sleeping bags, in dorm-style rooms with bathroom facilities outside the main building. It’s rustic but absolutely adds to the sense of adventure.

Distance cycled: 30km (app. 7 hours)
Accommodation: Ghost Lake Hut
Meals included: B, D

+Day 4 - Out of the wilderness on the Old Ghost Road

As morning light breaks over the tree tops, the Bell Birds will rise you from your slumber as their distinctive songs echo from the forest canopy. Mother Nature’s way of telling you to get up and ride bikes!

We’ll leave the hut on a singletrack leading down the opposite side of the mountain and back towards civilisation. The track leads through a diverse range of scenery as we make our way towards the valley floor. We’ll pass by the serene Goat Creek hut (a popular secluded spot for walkers, anglers and hunters) as we continue down the Mokinui Valley.

The path carves fluidly back through the rainforest on a singletrack trail, leading over bridges that span deep gorges and old landslides in the steep sided valley.

Reaching the bottom of the trail it’s just 10 seconds to our night’s accommodation; a truly unique lodge where Marion Boatwright first conceived the Old Ghost Road. The lodge is the spiritual home of the Old Ghost Road, and as well as learning about the history of the trail, you can enjoy pizza and beers on the deck overlooking the Mokihinuni River.

Your unforgettable post-ride meal and sunset views over the Buller River will provide the perfect close to a truly epic first few days.

Distance cycled: 54km (app. 6 hours)
Accommodation: The spiritual home of the Old Ghost Road
Meals included: B, D

+Day 5 - Transfer Day + visit Franz Josef Glacier

After a couple of big days on the bike, we have a day off to rest our legs and cover some miles in the van to our next destination. This is no ordinary transfer, however, as we’ll be driving down the spectacular west coast of the South Island, stopping along the way at the other-worldly Punakaiki Rocks to stretch legs and take photos.

Our destination is the imposing Franz Josef Glacier, which descends 3,000m from its origins high in the Southern Alps, over a distance of 11km, making it one of the steepest in New Zealand.

Your accommodation is a short drive from the glacier, and when we arrive we’ll have time to do a bit of bike maintenance, ready to get back in the saddle around Wanaka tomorrow

Accommodation: Small motel
Meals included: Breakfast

+Day 6 - Whirl around Wanaka - Deans Bank + Sticky Forest

We’ll leave Franz Josef Glacier in our wake and drive south to the stunning small town of Wanaka – the unofficial capital of the great outdoors. The town is nestled at the head of Lake Wanaka and pinned in by the Crown Range mountains.

Getting the legs back into action we’ll ride beautiful trails along the river from Deans Bank, around Lake Wanaka and down into the village itself. We’ll then head into the trees and tackle the tremendous singletrack in Sticky Forest.

Between the water and the slopes, you’ll see why Wanaka dominates the summer and winter outdoor scene in New Zealand.

We’ll have dinner in another lovely local restaurant and get ourselves psyched up for three of the best day’s riding imaginable.

Distance cycled: 30km (app. 4 hours)
Accommodation: Small hotel Wanaka
Meals included: Breakfast

+Day 7 - Cardrona Ski Field

We hope you’re still hungry for adventures, as today we tackle the Cardrona mountain range. Reaching a height of almost 2000m via chairlift, Cardrona is highest lift-accessed bike park in New Zealand.

As you step off the gondola you’ll feel like you’re on top of the world! From here there is a wide selection of trails, from flow trail, right up to technical natural singletrack that will see us spend the morning sampling the best this dry corner of New Zealand has to offer.

Then just when you think your arms and brakes can’t take anymore, we’ll embark on a 1600m descent to the valley floor via bike park trails, leading onto natural trails that deliver us nicely to the back yard of the pub where we’ll enjoy a well-deserved late lunch and a cold beer.

Once we’re happily fed and watered we’ll return to Wanaka to spend a second night in this vibrant outdoor town.

Distance cycled: 54km (app. 6 hours)
Accommodation: Small hotel Wanaka
Meals included: Breakfast

+Day 8 - MTB Gold in Alexandra

After breakfast this morning we’ll drive from Wanaka to our next stop at Alexandra, passing Kawarau Gorge on the way. The Otago landscape is peppered with gold mines and early explorer history, and today you’ll be riding into the thick of it!

Upon reaching the sleepy town of Alexandra we’ll drop in for the obligatory cup of coffee before meeting our local guide, then set out on another ride in a uniquely impressive landscape, adding one more to the mounting collection of amazing rides already gathered on this adventure in New Zealand.

We’ll climb up a dry riverbed that will lead us to a rabbit warren of valleys, all dropping off a high plateau that is pock-marked by massive rock formations that look like they’ve rained down from outer space.

We’ll select the trails – some flowing and fluid, others more rocky and technical – to suit the group and conditions, before finishing at our favourite café at the foot of the trails. Try one of the smoothies, they’re incredible!

Distance cycled: 15km – 20km (app. 3 – 4 hours)
Accommodation: Lodge accommodation Queenstown
Meals included: Breakfast

+Day 9 - Trail royalty in Queenstown

In recent years, Queenstown has become a bit of a mountain biking Mecca, but with so many trail choices available, you really need a local to show you around the best routes.

For the last day of your adventure we’re going to enjoy the incredible trails around Rude Rock to the absolute max!

Having already ridden some pretty big days, today we’re minimising the climbing and maximising the descending, riding laps of Rude Rock and Zoots, which will blow your mind.

When you arrive back at your Queenstown accommodation you’ll be ready – and deserving of – that post-ride beer and dinner!

Distance cycled: 20km – 35km (app. 5 hours)
Accommodation: Lodge accommodation Queenstown
Meals included: B, D

+Day 10 - Departure

All good things must come to an end, and unfortunately that means your mountain bike tour New Zealand adventure too.

We’ll transfer you to Queenstown airport to catch your flight back to the real world. You’ll be exhausted and your pack will be in desperate need of a wash – but it won’t matter to you in the slightest because you’ll also be taking away something much more from your adventure around New Zealand.

You’ll be taking away a host of absolutely unforgettable memories. Experiences that you’ll look back on and cherish for the rest of your life.

Please Note: Our mountain bike tour New Zealand is a living thing, being influenced by multiple factors such as changing weather conditions, group riding abilities, trail damage, to name a few. Your local guides are experts in guiding mountain bikers in New Zealand and will be continually assessing these factors and making tweaks to the itinerary where necessary to ensure that every member of the group has the best possible experience.

+Tour price

Mountain bike tour New Zealand Price

£2,950 / $4,278 USD per person (ex. flights, based on two sharing a room)

A single supplement of £550/ $798 USD will be payable should a single room be requested. Please note: single rooms are not available on three nights, because of the style of accommodation.

H+I Adventures is bonded by the Association of Bonded Travel Organisers Trust Limited (ABTOT), so you can be sure that when you book with us your money will be safe.

Price includes:

  • Services of fully-qualified, expert mountain bike guide(s) for the duration of the trip
  • 9 nights’ accommodation
  • All breakfasts, including double coffees, one lunch and five dinners
  • Van snacks and energy drinks
  • Kit transfer to mountain hut on day 3
  • All transport and luggage transfer required as part of the itinerary
  • Airport/ H+I recommended hotel pick-up on day 1 (Christchurch) and drop-off on day 10 (Queenstown) of tour (specified times apply)
  • Global Rescue emergency evacuation services

Price excludes:

  • International/ domestic flights
  • Lunches and evening meals
  • Bike rental – we have a limited number of full suspension bikes available on a first-come, first-served basis at a cost of £550/$798 each
  • Travel and activity insurance
  • Tourist visas
  • Tips in restaurants and hotels
  • Alcoholic/ non-alcoholic beverages
  • Personal safety and cycling equipment
  • Any other items not mentioned as included


+Skill + fitness levels required

Does this sound like you? Your vacation time is precious and we want to be absolutely sure that you’re making the most of it, by finding the perfect adventure for you. Be honest with yourself, if this adventure isn’t right for you, we have other tours that may well be a better fit for your mountain biking experience and ability.

Please note: The skill level required reflects an overall rating for the trails on the trip but you should expect to find sections and obstacles that push your ability levels.

Skill level: Intermediate+

  • You are generally comfortable riding most types of terrain in different conditions: singletrack, double track, muddy, dry, loose, bedrock…
  • You can brake, use gears and corner instinctively
  • You’ll have a go on moderate technical features, such as small rock gardens, small drops and steeper sections, but may get off and walk certain technical features
  • You mountain bike two or three times a week throughout your biking season
  • And the ‘+’ part of ‘Intermediate+’ means that you will be aiming to tackle more of those moderate technical features

Fitness level: 6/7

  • You have an excellent level of bike fitness, exercising four or five times every week throughout the year, for at least an hour at a time
  • You are comfortable mountain biking up to six hours a day at a moderate pace, with snack and photo stops, for four or more consecutive days
  • You can tackle several serious climbs a day, up to 600 metres each

Typical trails you’ll be riding

  • Double track: undulating and sometimes steep forest roads made up of hard-packed dirt, and loose tracks with golf ball- to fist-sized rocks
  • Singletrack: purpose-built and natural singletrack, at times with golf ball- to head-sized (fixed) rocks, roots, and sand sections. Some trails may be very steep
  • Forest trails: dirt tracks crossed with roots and sometimes very narrow through the trees
  • Trail surfaces may be dry and sandy or muddy, depending on the weather, and you will encounter river crossings
  • You will also encounter a degree of exposure on certain trails


+Arrival + departure details

Your mountain bike tour New Zealand will commence in Christchurch and will finish in Queenstown, in the South Island. As such, you should book your flights to arrive in Christchurch and depart from Queenstown.

We strongly advise that you arrive in Christchurch two days (or more) prior to the tour start date in order to overcome jet lag and travel weariness. We have a handy guide to spending 24 hours in Christchurch, which includes accommodation recommendations and things to do.

Christchurch and Queenstown airports are well served by international airlines, and when you arrive in Christchurch we will arrange transfer to your local accommodation.

On the first day of your adventure, your guides will collect you from your accommodation and transfer the whole group to our base 30 minutes from the city centre, where we’ll build and test bikes, ready for your antipodean adventure!

On the last day of your trip we will return you to Queenstown airport in time for your onward flight, which you should book no earlier than 10am.

If you plan to spend more time in Queenstown post-trip we also have a guide to spending 24 hours in Queenstown.

+Travelling to New Zealand

Most travellers will come to the South Island of New Zealand via Christchurch or Queenstown.

Major airlines travelling to Christchurch and Queenstown include:

  • British Airways
  • Air New Zealand
  • Qantas
  • Emirates

You must book your bike on to your flight in advance, otherwise you could face a heavy charge at the airport. Here are some tips and video on how to pack your bike for travel.

Visas

For advice on entry visa entry requirements to New Zealand please visit the Tourism New Zealand website

+Preparing yourself + your bike for the trip

Please read the full kit list before you start packing for your mountain bike tour New Zealand, so that you have everything you need!

The ideal bike for mountain bike tour New Zealand is a good quality full-suspension mountain bike with around 150mm of travel.

To get the most out of your mountain bike tour New Zealand you should plan some training in advance of your tour, and we’ve prepared a training plan for this kind of adventure.

Please note: It is absolutely essential that your bike is completely spotless for arrival in New Zealand. NZ authorities are extremely strict about foreign organisms entering their country and upsetting the natural eco-systems, so if you have any dirt on your tyres your bike may not make it through customs. We recommend that you invest in some new tyres specially for your adventure in New Zealand.

You must also have your bike professionally serviced, including your shocks, in preparation for your mountain bike tour New Zealand.

+Your mountain bike guides in New Zealand

Our local mountain bike guides in New Zealand are of the very highest standard. They are qualified in first-aid, and have the knowledge and experience to lead a group safely through the diverse eco-systems and unpredictable weather of New Zealand.

Our guides have years of experience in the saddle on the South Island trails and will be able to enhance your holiday with facts and fables on local history, flora and fauna. They’re also genuinely nice people and will do their best to make sure that everyone in the group has a great time.

+Accommodation + food

The majority of accommodation that we  use on
 this mountain bike tour New Zealand is family-owned and operated hotels, guest lodges and B&Bs.

You will have three nights in shared lodge accommodation, including a remote mountain hut in the middle of a beautiful rain forest to give you that real wilderness experience. Ghost Lake Hut is a basic accommodation where you’ll be in dorm-style rooms, sleeping in sleeping bags and bathroom facilities are outside the main building.

You’ll enjoy fabulous food in New Zealand, made from fresh, locally-sourced produce, accompanied by delicious local wines and craft ales – all perfect reward for hard days on the bike!

Most of your meals will be in local cafés which, in New Zealand, serve the most delicious, home-cooked meals, from the best local ingredients. This includes freshly-baked bread, pastries and cakes, perfect for replenishing your energy!

All breakfasts, one lunch and five dinners are included in the tour price, and you should budget around 1,000 NZD for meals and drinks during your trip.

+Health + safety

No specific vaccinations are needed to enter New Zealand,
 but you should always consult your own doctor or physician before travelling to new countries to seek their advice on matters concerning your health abroad.

You can drink the water from the taps in New Zealand, and also from streams on the advice of your guides.

You should always consult your own doctor or physician before travelling to new countries to seek their advice on matters concerning your health abroad.

Your health and safety is on tour our top priority so when you travel with us you also have the peace of mind knowing that you will be covered by Global Rescue emergency medical and evacuation services.

+Currency + foreign exchange

The currency in New Zealand is the New Zealand dollar (NZD), and this is the only currency accepted in the country.

There will be plenty of ATMs along the way, but we recommend you have a reserve of around $250 with you on arrival, just in case.

Tipping

We suggest a tip of 2% to 6% of the cost of your tour should be paid to your mountain bike guide at the end of the trip, which will then be divided between drivers, support staff and fixers, if you feel you have had a great experience on your mountain bike tour New Zealand.

+Holiday insurance

You are required as a condition of booking to be insured against medical and personal accident risks. In this policy you must include cover for mountain biking and we recommend that you take out a policy which covers cancellation and baggage.

We work closely with WorldNomads whose policies are specially designed for mountain bike holidays and you can arrange your insurance cover directly with them.

Please Note: Our mountain bike tour New Zealand is a living thing, being influenced by multiple factors such as changing weather conditions, group riding abilities, trail damage, to name a few. Your local guides are experts in guiding mountain bikers in New Zealand and will be continually assessing these factors and making tweaks to the itinerary where necessary to ensure that every member of the group has the best possible experience.

Mountain Bike Tour New Zealand Reviews

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New Zealand mountain bike tour
Average rating:  
 14 reviews
by Matt Muldoon on New Zealand mountain bike tour
Mind-blowing and fun

The diversity of environments and trails we experienced was amazing. From tropical to alpine settings, flowy, technical, rocky, smooth, bike park, remote natural tracks, this trip has it all. I can’t imagine a better guide than Erin. She knows every meter of every trail and expertly matched each day’s plan perfectly to our group.

All the logistical matters were handled flawlessly, the accommodations were good, the food was great, and the riding was superlative. We all had grins plastered on our faces almost all the time. I would highly recommend this trip to anyone who meets the physical and skill requirements.

Between the rides, bus transfers, the meals, and keeping your gear and yourself sorted out, you won’t have much free time to explore on your own. For that reason, if you’d like to experience some of the non-riding activities New Zealand has to offer (and there are many) I’d recommend tacking on a few extra days to your trip.

by Kate Spellissy on New Zealand mountain bike tour
What an Adventure

Set against the backdrop of the South Island's stunning natural beauty, we were treated to a wide-variety of trails that checked all the boxes. Erin (our superstar guide) and Andre (driver extrodinaire and one of the nicest human beings you could ever meet) took such excellent care of us, providing all the logistical support necessary to ensure a successful and highly enjoyable time - no small feat So many great memories made.



Long climbs were rewarded with stunning views and steep descents challenged my preconceived ideas of what I could do. I definitely returned a stronger and more confident rider.

by Marjorie Marshall on New Zealand mountain bike tour
A trip of a Lifetime

Our guide, Erin, is a very talented and experience rider. Erin was able to provide rides for us that were more suitable to our riding ability when the scheduled ride was more technical than appropriate for us.

Even though we were not able to ride all of the trails, our trip to New Zealand was a wonderful experience. We are most grateful to Andre, our driver, for his knowledge of the area and for graciously accommodating us during our tour.


Thank you Erin and Andre for helping to make this one of our trips of a lifetime!

by Rachel on New Zealand mountain bike tour
Beti Tribe NZ

H+I Adventures made it easy to show up and shred. Our guide was FANTASTIC and they thought through everything.



The trails were spectacular, food was delicious, and accommodations were great. Given the chance, I will definitely go on another adventure with them.

by Evan on New Zealand mountain bike tour
Getting Rad With The Kiwis

Just returned from the NZ tour and can’t wipe the grin off my face, what an amazing trip. This was my second tour with H+I Adventures and again they did not disappoint. Glad to see the NZ trails lived up to all the hype. The trip had a little bit of everything to offer from the flowy singletrack of Old Ghost Road to the techy rock features in Alexandria and the root filled, chunky, all-smiles descents in Craigieburn. Of course the trip would not be complete without a stop in Queenstown for a few days where the trails were top notch and the town was vibrant.



Big shout out to the guides and the H+I crew for everything and putting up with our shenanigans along the way. There are a lot of logistics involved with these tours and H+I has mastered the art of making things run smoothly. All we had to do was show up ready to ride some awesome trails and they handled the rest. Good trails, good people, good times.

by Gerrit on New Zealand mountain bike tour
Home away from home

Being from Colorado, I'm always a bit biased on where the best place for a mountain biker to live is. The South Island of New Zealand is the only place I've ever been where I've found myself thinking there just *might* be someplace better than Colorado.



This trip has it all. Every possible kind of riding you can think of. From long XC style epics around Christchurch and Hanmer Springs, to riding through the lush humid rainforests ending above tree line in a high alpine environment. Through Rocky Gnarly dry tech in Alexandra, and amazingly fun perma-grin inducing trails in Queenstown.



The guiding on this trip is top notch as well. Erin and Brett were our local guides and they handled a bunch of insane, crazy Yeti freaks like it was old hat. Even though we had a much larger group than a typical H+I trip, it felt like our guides still took the time to get to know each and every one of us and make sure our concerns and questions were answered. Their backcountry skills are spot on, and they were able to handle all the mechanicals and flesh wounds that occurred without missing a beat.



These trips are never just a "biking holiday" for me. They are life altering experiences, that no only make me a better rider, but a better human as well.

by JC on New Zealand mountain bike tour
EPIC!

Outside of idiot politicians in my own country, this trip and the country of New Zealand have me considering a citizenship change! H+I never disappoint and always provide excellent service. I went on this adventure with my Yeti Tribe mates, so there was even more hazing and 12-year old boy shenanigans involved to raise the fun level. Euan, Erin, Brett and Mandil did a great job guiding and keeping us in line, not to mention mending some body and bike wounds on the trail. You know a trip is great when even the bus drivers are stellar. Shaun was an awesome driver and our own personal NZ history teacher. Ryan was as cool as the other side of the pillow and always willing to help out.



While I missed out on some riding due to injury, I did ride all of the Old Ghost Road, which is an IMBA Epic rated trail now and a must do for any adventurous mountain biker. Craigieburn was incredible downhill fun with lots of roots and swanky slick mud sections. Wanaka delivered the goods too with incredible views of the lake and it has a great town area for post ride activities. Cardrona bike park is where the pucker factor was raised for many and the speeds increased. There were numerous lines available for various skill levels and even the green runs were incredible fun. The guides from the bike park led us down a 6km DH run to a pub at the bottom to end the day. How does it get any better?



Queenstown, that’s how. I would rather keep it a secret, but I have to say this is the best mountain bike city in the world, period. I couldn’t ride here per doctor orders, but seeing how the city has embraced biking, the trails available, and the grins on my mate’s faces when they were on the trail at Coronet Peak and Zoot was enough to know how awesome it was without spinning the pedals.



If there was one mountain bike trip to go on in your life, I would advise this one.

by Robert on New Zealand mountain bike tour
Yeti Tribe Gathering NZ

Thanks guys for the wonderful adventure that was the Yeti Tribe Gathering NZ. Organisation was great and I felt fully supported without feeling cosseted or intruded upon. The trails were world class and the ‘Old Ghost Road’ a truly memorable experience.

A super trip with plenty of thrills and a lot of laughs with some great people

by Alex on New Zealand mountain bike tour
New Zealand

A great sample of trails that covered so many different types of riding. The diversity was also fantastic, in that some trails were gravel based and loose, while others were fast and rooty. This also applies to the scenery, where every riding location was incredible and showed the true beauty of New Zealand. The length of the tour was ideal as it didn't feel too rushed, yet we managed to ride so many unique and varied spots. The flow was well designed, and I liked how the big rides (i.e. St James and Old Ghost Road) were early on.



Both Liam and Phil did an incredible job of running the tour. The mantra of ensuring that we "only had to worry about riding our bikes" rang true as the tour guides ensured everything ran to plan and that we were well catered for. I really enjoyed how they brought their own experiences, stories, and local knowledge, which added context to the areas we were riding.

by Romy + Alain on New Zealand mountain bike tour
New Zealand

Once more we experience that the best way to get to know a country is by bike. There was such a variety off trails and landscapes in our trip and we had so much fun riding them.

The guiding was just perfect and it was so much fun being with this group. We loved it.

by Clayton B on New Zealand mountain bike tour
Adventure Down Under

An epic adventure twisting and turning through the South Island! The scale and pace of the tour were spot on, with enough technicality to keep pushing us and on our toes.



This was my second trip with H+I, the first being Nepal. The riding in New Zealand is completely different! Its much faster, flowy and longer than Nepal, with fewer breaks. I would say New Zealand was harder than Nepal.



The guides were spot on and always felt like they were just part of the group! Euan is outstanding with his knowledge and making everything work smoothly regardless of what random issues popped up. Also a blast to watch ride.

Liam is the expert driver and logistics dude! Always where he had to be at the right time. His quick-witted humor and personality was welcomed!

Ash is super energetic and just a blast to ride with! She has great skill and is always helping if youre willing to listen! She definitely made me a better rider during this trip. Overall, the guides were excellent and just felt like a good group of friends instead of the "I'm a guide, youre a client" you may experience with other groups.



The end result was an outstanding trip that will have you speechless!

by Julian Davison on New Zealand mountain bike tour
Shred Heaven

This is an awesome journey, no other way of describing it. New Zealand is a helluva long way from anywhere, but worth every air-mile. H&I have brought together a fabulous selection of rides, linked together by a great road trip across the stunning scenery of South Island - a simply a magical place. The logistics were seamless, the guides fantastic and the riding,was absolutely superb. Euan, Ash and Liam were brilliant company, and made the whole experience safe, exhilarating and, above all, huge fun.



Bike skills coaching by Ash along the route was brilliant, and I really appreciated the way in which we quickly came together as group. The Old Ghost Road lived up to expectations as an epic ride, but there were many other incredible days, not least Mount Pisa, and the beech-forest rides of Craigieburn. Mile after mile of fast & furious single-track through the stunning back-country South Island - Shred Heaven!



Anyone looking for a truly epic mountain bike adventure through magical landscapes should have this trip high on their ‘must-do’ list.

by Elizabeth Pell on New Zealand mountain bike tour
Dream realized

A grand tour of the South Island! Beautiful & diverse environments & trails. Challenging & fun adventure riding. Euan's trail picks led us into I-can't-believe-I'm-here-seeing-this places daily. Expansive views from each mountain top and numerous ridge line trails. And the miles of downhill shredding! Stream crossings. Mountains and valleys and river crossings all with clean air, no noise or light pollution. Truly unspoiled.



Bonus riding techniques, pro tips & bike adjustments from Ash. Super first aid and logistics from Liam. Great food scouted out. Even a surprise birthday cake for my husband's 50th birthday!



NZ with H+I a dream we didn't want to wake from! Truly a once in a lifetime vaca that we are so grateful to have experienced.

by Keith Henderson on New Zealand mountain bike tour
New Zealand Adventure

This was a Great mountain biking adventure. The places we stayed were all very comfortable, weather looking out at the beaches of Kiakoura, looking over lake Wanaka, or any of the others--all well appointed. They tailored the trip to the riding level of our group-and gave riding tips to help people improve their skills. I can't say enough about our guides--Liam, Ashley and Euan were friendly, personable, professional, fun, interesting, energetic, helpful, articulate and very good at reading us as individuals and as a group. The riding covered such a wide variety of terrains and was both challenging and rewarding. Old Ghost road was the top ride I have done--very memorable (as was the entire trip). Most days had climbing but the reward in views then long flowing descents was a sweet payoff. They picked some gems of trails and the direction of best flow, They knew good restaurants, (the best pie shop in NZ), and made it easy for us to relax and think about biking and having fun! Easily the best run mtn biking tour we have been on. Highly recommended!

Frequently asked questions (FAQs) mountain bike tour New Zealand

  • Q. How many people will be in the group?

We only run small group adventures to ensure that everyone has the best experience possible, and there will generally be between eight and ten people in each group. The minimum number of people we require to run our mountain bike tour New Zealand is six.

  • Q. What’s the age range of people who come on this holiday?

Our mountain bike tour New Zealand caters for a wide age range; typically between 30 and 60 years-old. As long as you have a good level of physical fitness and good bike handling skills you will enjoy this mountain bike tour no matter what your age.

  • Q. What style of mountain biking vacation is it?

This mountain bike tour New Zealand, South Island is a guided mountain biking holiday, ideal for intermediate+ mountain bikers. Riding here, in the wild, dramatic landscapes of New Zealand you’ll experience some tough climbs and descents, as well as some lovely flowing singletrack. You’ll ride through a huge diversity of ecosystems, including rainforest, high alpine ridges, and glacial valleys, and you’ll experience some big backcountry wilderness riding too.

  • Q. How far will we be mountain biking each day?

The distances we cover each day range from 18km to 54km. The flow of the itinerary has been designed give you the ideal mix of long, epic backcountry days, and shorter New Zealand classic trails to ensure that you get the most from every single riding experience.

  • Q. Do we have to carry all our gear with us?

No, you only need to carry a 20 litre day pack with you whilst riding. We have a support vehicle and driver who will transfer your luggage to your next accommodation each day, and have it ready and waiting for your arrival. On our big wilderness days where we ride into a mountain hut you need to carry a change of clothes for the evening/ next day’s biking, but other provisions will be dropped at the hut, ready for your arrival.

  • Q. What if I come across a section of trail I can’t ride?

Your guide will be very happy to give you some bike skills training during your trip to help improve your confidence and your enjoyment of your mountain bike tour New Zealand. If there is a section that you would prefer not to ride, then you can simply hop off your bike and walk. You won’t be the only one to walk certain sections and it’s not a competition in biking ability; it’s a mountain biking holiday!

  • Q. Who will be guiding us?

Your mountain bike guides are local to New Zealand and experienced professionals who have a real passion for mountain biking and for the culture and landscape of their country. Your safety is their number one priority, closely followed by your enjoyment of the tour. They will always be on-hand to answer any questions or requests you may have throughout your trip.

  • Q. What sort of accommodation will we be staying in?

On this mountain bike tour New Zealand on the South Island, you will be staying in variety of different accommodation, from local small motels, to traditional hikers’ lodges, and a wilderness mountain hut.

  • Q. Which meals are included in the tour price?

Breakfasts are included each day, as well as one lunch and five dinners. Lunches will mostly be eaten on the trail from provisions we’ve bought in advance, or occasionally, in a café.

  • Q. What type of mountain bike is best for the trip?

A good quality full suspension mountain bike with 150mm travel front and rear will be ideal for this mountain bike tour New Zealand. The terrain you will be riding is rough in places and you will feel more comfortable on a full suspension bike. We can arrange bike hire for you for the duration of your trip and have a limited number of full suspension bikes available on a first-come, first-served basis

  • Q. The itinerary says that we fly into Christchurch and fly out of Queenstown, is it possible to fly out of Christchurch instead?

Yes, it is possible and there will be a transfer available, however it will be a seven to eight-hour drive from Queenstown to Christchurch.

  • Q. How will my bike bag get from Christchurch to Queenstown for the end of the trip?

Don’t worry about that, we have everything in hand for bag transfers!

  • Q. What about tourist visas, how do I get those?

To find out if you require a visa to enter New Zealand as a tourist, read the information on the Tourism New Zealand website.

  • Q. What will the weather be like in New Zealand?

The weather during your mountain bike tour New Zealand will vary according to the eco-system and areas in which you’re riding. Overall, the weather will be very pleasant and sunny for mountain biking, with temperatures around 20C/68F to 25C/77F each day. In the high alpine and rain forest regions it may be cooler and wetter, so it’s important to make sure you have everything on the kit list with you for your New Zealand adventure.

  • Q. What clothes and kit should I bring?

The South Island of New Zealand boasts very diverse eco-systems, so you should expect changes in weather and temperatures, from hot and dry in the east to potentially damp and cool in the rain forests of the west. Read the full kit list to find out what you need to pack for your mountain bike tour New Zealand.

  • Q. Can I bring a drone with me?

Unfortunately not. We are working hard to provide each and every customer who rides with us an unparalleled mountain bike experience in every destination we ride. This takes years of experience, riding and planning to get right, and a drone adds a very real danger to the group’s riding experience and health & safety.

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