Photo copyright: Ruth Lawton Photography

Twin Coast Trail

OverviewTrail Status: Open

Bay of Islands — Hokianga Harbour (2 days, 87km)

Cycle Coast to Coast

The Twin Coast Cycle Trail – Pou Herenga Tai travels from the famously beautiful Bay of Islands to the remote and picturesque Hokianga Harbour, or vice versa. Due to its sub-tropical climate – it can be ridden all year round – hence the name “winterless north”.

The trail is 87 km and is divided into four sections and can be ridden in either direction.  The central point is Kaikoke and from there the trail descends to the East and the West coasts.

The trail goes through diverse and stunning scenery with magnificent views, native bush, suspension bridges, waterfalls, beautiful streams, estuaries, harbours, boardwalks, disused train corridors and tunnels.  It also takes you on a fascinating journey through some of New Zealand’s earliest Maori and European settlements. Story boards along the way bring to life the history and stories of the local people. Visit the Far North to discover the birthplace of the nation.

The bike ride is suitable for most riders as it is generally flat with gentle climbs – most of it being easy with a few harder hills. The surface is fairly good and can be ridden all year round.  Some cyclists do the trail in a day, others take 2 days, some spread it over a few days and take in all the surrounding areas have on offer as well.

Be Prepared

There are cafes, shops and accommodation available in all the towns along the trail to gather energy and supplies.

Public toilets are available in all the towns, there is also a toilet midway on all the sections of the trail except the 14km from Kaikohe to Okaihau.

DRINKING WATER: Northland's lowland water quality is generally poor and not suitable for drinking. Despite the high rainfall compared with other parts of the country, the small area of land means most rainfall drains away to the rivers and the sea. The rivers are short, slow moving and are often heavily influenced by ocean tides. Any water taken from a river or stream should be boiled (3 mins), filtered or treated before drinking. Alternatively you can purchase commercially bottled water from the businesses along the trail, or ask to fill your water bottle after a coffee stop at one of the local cafés. During the hotter months it’s recommended you carry 1.5 - 2.5 litres of water per person per day.

MOBILE PHONE COVERAGE: Limited coverage along most sections of the cycleway.

Weather Info

The Far North enjoys a subtropical climate and the cycle trail is suited to all seasons. There is no definitive winter or summer, which makes it a wonderful place to explore and experience at any time of the year.

The region boasts up to 2000 hours of sunshine per year and enjoys moderate temperatures averaging from between 24°C (75°F) down to 14°C (57°F) with high humidity.

While often described as the ‘Winterless North’, like most of New Zealand, the weather can be changeable. It’s recommended you carry wind and waterproof clothing.

Trail Partner

Inspiration, News and Updates

Lindy Chinnery lives in Lawrence and is our most recent winner of two super Kennett Brothers books for completing a getSmart Survey for the Trails. Lindy is a real adventurer, having recently completed a 1700 km solo biking and camping trip through Canada and the West Coast of the USA. We asked Lindy to share som...


If you’re keen to explore the idea of a manageable back-country ride, take a look at the super new Timber Trail website and learn a little more about one of New Zealand’s best mountain bike wilderness adventures. Since opening in 2013, the 84km Timber Trail through the Pureora Forest in the central North Island ...
One of the most spectacular and challenging sections of the Pou Herenga Tai - Twin Coast Cycle Trail will be opened by the community this month. The final 28km Okaihau to Horeke leg of the 84km trail will be opened on 18 March with a morning cycle, run or walk event. It will be followed by a prize giving hosted b...


Prime Minister and Minister of Tourism John Key has announced a further $3 million will be invested in 2015/16 to help fund the completion of Northland’s Twin Coast Cycle Trail Pou Herenga Tai. The Government is working with the Far North District Council on the 84km trail which will pass through the centre of the...


John Carter, Far North Mayor
Be prepared for an amazing experience from sweeping and unspoiled vistas to a historic journey that embraces the origins of New Zealand's nationhood. HON JOHN CARTER – Far North Mayor