Dennis and I have been in New Zealand for more than two months, yet I have hardly been out on my bicycle. First, it was a shoulder injury and then it was pure laziness but when friends visited from Canada, it was time to show them one of our favorite New Zealand rides.
One never knows what the day holds. A ride on the Rimutaka Cycle Trail seemed like a benign enough way to spend a day, but we were in for a rather large surprise.
The very first line on the very first page of the Hauraki Rail Trail website is:
“The Hauraki Rail Trail is the easiest riding trail in New Zealand.” I’m lazy and I’m sold.
The fun never ends in New Zealand. Heading north out of Napier and Hawke’s Bay, we took a detour to spend five days on the Coromandel Peninsula, in the beachside town of Hahei, overlooking Mercury Bay. (Coming directly from Auckland, Hahei is a two hour drive through the beautiful Coromandel Forest Park.)
I am great lover of red wines. Once we discovered that the Hawke’s Bay region is New Zealand’s largest and oldest red wine producing center and it also offers 200 kilometers of cycling trails, we were sold on a visit.
A traveler just never knows what is going to be around the next corner. Each trip has its unusual little bit of quirkiness, to make every day a special adventure. Case in point is Tirau, in the Waikato region of New Zealand, population 690.
Leaving Auckland for a few days, we had a five hour drive ahead of us, with a planned stop midway to check out Rotorua, a popular destination because of its abundant thermal hot-springs. Tirau wasn’t even on our radar as a place to stop.