Nga Haerenga - The New Zealand Cycle Trail Story
Imagine riding through the cool of the New Zealand bush, dense with fern, dappled with light and the only sound is the call of native birds loud above the hum of your bike.
Or, imagine a trail that rounds a wide sweeping bend to a view that simply takes your breath away – stunning snowcapped peaks mirrored in a deep, still lake.
Journeys such as these exist – they are real examples of what 'Nga Haerenga - The New Zealand Cycle Trail' has on offer. And it all started with an idea...
In February 2009 that idea was to build a network of cycle trails that would not only provide a healthy and enjoyable way for Kiwis and international visitors to see the country, but would also generate economic, social and environmental benefits for our communities.
'Nga Haerenga - The New Zealand Cycle Trail' is a partnership project between the Government and the Green Party of Aotearoa New Zealand. The Government invested $50 million into turning this idea into a reality – with a dedicated project team within the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment and partnership organisations from regions across New Zealand.
In addition to the government's investment, the commitment of the local communities involved generated a further $30 million of co-funding towards the construction of the inaugural Great Rides.
The Great Rides are the premier rides on the New Zealand Cycle Trail. They are predominantly off-road trails that showcase the very best of New Zealand's landscape, environment, culture and heritage.
The New Zealand Cycle Trail has since expanded to include other existing off-road trails that meet the 'Great Ride' standard, such as the Otago Central Rail Trail - the 'original' Great Ride that in part provided the catalyst for this project.
Under the Network Expansion Project, on-road cycle touring routes are also being added to the New Zealand Cycle Trail, with the long-term aim of developing a nationwide cycle network, enabling locals and international visitors to explore all of New Zealand by bike.
'Nga Haerenga' means 'the journeys', both in a physical and spiritual sense, which is exactly what you will experience on the New Zealand Cycle Trail.
So what are you waiting for.... Start planning your cycling holiday now!