Autumn – fill your bucket

Published 2024-05-03

With autumn upon us and winter looming, there’s no better time than now to plan your next Great Rides adventure.

The advantages of settled weather, stunning seasonal colours and quieter times in popular holiday spots make it easy to take time out and connect with friends and whānau.

Fill your bucket with health and happiness to get through those winter months.

Here are some Ngā Haerenga Great Rides of New Zealand holiday suggestions for the season.

Hawke's Bay Trails for all tastes

Vineyards and cycle trails are the perfect combination to explore the terroir of New Zealand’s wine regions while also connecting with friends and creating long-lasting memories. 

Following dedicated cycle paths and the occasional country road, the delightful Hawke’s Bay Trails network traces the coast from Bay View in the north to Cape Kidnappers in the south, and ventures inland through idyllic rural and riverside scenery.

With mostly flat terrain, fantastic attractions, great food and gorgeous weather, these trails are the perfect way to explore the region and offer something for everyone, from world-class wineries, cafes, pubs and golf to art deco architecture, art galleries and ice cream.

Hawke's Bay Trails are a year-round cycling experience, with a network of mostly off-road limestone trails suitable in almost all weather conditions.

Tasman Great Taste Trail - spoilt for choice

At the top of the sunny south, Tasman’s Great Taste Trail beckons for those keen on multi-day or day rides mixed with off-trail fun. There are rides of varying lengths to choose from, and an array of cafes, wineries, breweries, galleries and shops to keep you busy when you’re ready to chill. At last count there were 216 places to get things to eat and drink within 1km of the trail. 

Alternatively, head to the amazing Abel Tasman National Park nearby for more adventures kayaking, walking or swimming.

Tasman's Great Taste Trail has something for everyone, on and off the trail. 

Roxburgh Gorge Trail full of scenery and history

Further south is the Roxburgh Gorge Trail, one of the country’s most visually spectacular and intriguing day rides. Flanked by steep, rugged cliffs and passing historic gold mining sites, the trail follows the Clutha Mata-au River and Lake Roxburgh. Set among graceful willows, native shrubs and fragrant thyme, it’s a striking snapshot of Central Otago’s heritage and natural history.

Off the trail there’s plenty to do too. There are three golf courses nearby, cafes, breweries, try a Jimmy's pie famous in the lower South Island, take a river cruise or visit an estate where you can find out all about the exotic spice saffron and taste test at the same time.

Roxburgh Gorge Trail is a trek into the wilderness. 

Queenstown Trail - epic views, adventure and attractions to boot

New Zealand’s adventure capital, Queenstown, is also a great place to meet with friends and whānau. Surrounded by stunning landscapes there are many Queenstown Trail rides to choose from. Take time out for must-see sights, wineries and other attractions, including the adrenalin-fuelled bungy jumping or jetboat trips.

Immerse yourself in the alpine vistas of the Queenstown Lakes District. 


Looking for more autumn cycling inspiration? 

Whether you want to challenge yourself, collect them all or create long-lasting memories, discover all 23 Ngā Haerenga Great Rides of New Zealand here.

Find the people, products, services and experiences to make your ride great. Check out our partner directory.