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Level: Beginner
Length: 52 mi (83.7 km)
Surface: Doubletrack
Configuration: One-way
Elevation: +441/431 ft
Total: 3 riders
 

Mountain Biking Twin Coast Cycle Trail

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#177 of 381 mountain bike trails in New Zealand
#9811 in the world

The Twin Coast Cycle Trail is an 84 kilometre,52 mile, easy cycle trail that crosses the northern part of New Zealand from coast to coast. It's suitable for families and Sunday riders. It's a wide, easy all-weather surface with no surprises. For much of the way it follows an old railway bed. It's generally ridden over two or three days using tour operators to take care of accommodation, baggage transfers and shuttles.

You can ride it west to east or east to west. On the western end is the sleepy village of Horeke on the upper reaches of the Hokianga Harbour. The village is rich in history and natural beauty but poor on services. This end of the trail follows the Utakura River through farmland and kauri forest and features a 1.2km long boardwalk.

On the eastern end the trail starts or finishes at Opua, a thriving tourist village on the beautiful Bay of Islands. The section between Kawakawa and Opua features a world famous toilet(!), a tourist steam train, the amazing bridge over the Kawakawa River, and mangrove forest along the estuary.

In the middle section, there is the broad blue expanse of Lake Omapere, and some really neat wooden structures to play on . There is also a slightly technical detour you can take that goes through a pine forest. It's fun too. And there's the well-serviced midway town of Kaikohe.

There is a website for the trail at http://www.twincoastcycle.com/. The trail has received government funding as part of "The New Zealand Cycle Trail" project so is also on their website, http://nzcycletrail.com/trails/twin-coast-trail/ but read that with a grain of salt as the copywriters tend to gush.

The trail cost over $13m to build and it shows. It makes for a fabulous holiday ride for all the family.

Before you go
  • Drinking water 
  • No E-bikes permitted 
  • No Fat biking allowed in winter 
  • No Fee required 
  • No Lift service 
  • No Night riding allowed 
  • No Pump track 
  • Restrooms 
Getting there
You can start the Twin Coast Cycle trail at either end: Horeke or Opua. They are both small villages and the trail is easy to find. Other places to access the trail include Okaihau, Kaikohe and Kawakawa.
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Twin Coast Cycle Trail Trail map

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Himself (on Oct 12, 2019)
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Trail conditions

Good (on May 15, 2017)
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Reviews

  • Desperado
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    The trail is finally completed. As it's close to Auckland it could become New Zealand's most popular family-scenic, weekend-break, mellow-adventure, touristy style of ride. Within a few years tourist services will develop and make it a great local attraction.

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  • Himself
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    From Okaihau to Horeke road return...2 hours. It's a rail trail but technical in places.

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  • Jim Cummings
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    It's still a very long way from being a coast to coast ride but the sections done are good easy rides through scenic countryside.

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