On Your Bike
Taupo has many options for cycling so whether you are a roadie, a mountain biker, a casual rider or just want to take the kids out for a ride, there are plenty opportunities for everybody to bike. For local knowledge, quiz the friendly staff at a local cycle shop. They'll be up to date with the track conditions and can point you to the best place to ride for your level of experience and timeframe.
Great Lake Taupo 10 Great Rides
For a good overview of the whole area with more information about many of the rides listed download the Great Lake Taupo 10 Great Rides brochure.
Family and Recreational Rides
For an easy scenic ride that is suitable for all abilities, head to the lakefront and take a tour along the Lions Walk which runs from the park in the middle of town south to Wharewaka Point. This is a shared path and is sealed for around 5km.
In 2012 the tracks built and maintained by Bike Taupo where accredited as a Silver Level Ride Centre by the International Mountain Biking Association (IMBA). What does this mean? As one of only 11 Rides Centres throughout the world, it means our faciliies are right up there internationally and offer awesome mountain biking suitable for a wide variety of riding abilities. Of the 11 centres only one is Gold, three are Silver and six are Bronze so are you waiting for?
Bike Taupo Mountain bike tracks:
- The Waikato River, a scenic track that follows the river from Taupo to the Aratiatia dam and return via the Huka Falls.
- The Craters MTB Park-Wairakei Forest, a network of tracks in a plantation forest to suit all levels of ability from easy to expert.
- The Great Lake Trail, a beautiful track which meanders for 90 kilometres besides the shores of beautiful Lake Taupo. It is part of Nga Haerenga, the New Zealand Cycle Trail network.
There is also a good range of road riding options that can be accessed directly from any one of the cafés in town. Check out the Taupo Urban/Rural map.
Mountain Bike Day Trips from Taupo
North on Highway 5
If you head east on SHW 38 at Rainbow Mountain, you can go through Murupara to the Whirinaki Forest. The tracks are located in some of the best virgin native forest in the North Island. The Moerangi Track is an epic one day ride.
At Waipa, situated at the southern entrance of Rotorua, you will find the main car park for the Redwoods Whakarewarewa Forest. This is one of the oldest mountain bike networks in New Zealand and it offers a great blend of riding surfaces, topography and scenery catering for all levels of riders.
North and west of Taupo
There are lots of new tracks on the NZCT Waikato River Trail. Tracks vary in difficulty and the closest ones travel either way from Atiamuri - Whakamaru - Mangakino.
The NZCT Timber Trail in the Pureora Forest utilises historic bush tramways, old bulldozer and haul roads. It features 35 bridges, including 8 large suspension bridges (the longest being 141 metres) and showcases the historic Ongarue Spiral, a marvel of engineering. It passes through magnificent podocarp forests of rimu, totara, miro, matai and kahikatea, as well as some exotic forestry and more open vegetation, offering extensive views of the surrounding landscape.
East on the Napier Taupo Highway (SHW 5)
About 45 km east from Taupo there is the Te Iringa Track which is part of the DoC track network. Mountain bike access is currently being trialled.
South on Highway One
At the SHW1 bridge in Turangi you can access the Tongariro River Trail. This is a loop track on both sides of the beautiful Tongariro River suitable for families.
Further south, accessed from the Desert Road (SH 1), is the Tree Trunk Gorge Track.
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