The Otago Central Rail Trail is the adventure of a lifetime, open to all levels. Those who complete this ride are rewarded with magnificent landscapes and pitstops in quaint towns unlike anywhere else in New Zealand!
The Rail Trail follows the former railway line between Middlemarch and Clyde for 152km.
It is known as New Zealand’s original “Great Ride" and offers something around every bend. Explore what remains from the gold rush era, marvel at the stunning landscapes and the local cuisine, or take your time admiring the historic railway viaducts and tunnels that make up this breathtaking route.
The Otago Central Rail Trail is best enjoyed over four or five days to ensure you get the full experience.
Difficulty: Easy to Medium
Ride through the picturesque Taieri Gorge and follow the Taieri River as it meanders south.
Grab a well-deserved beverage of choice and a meal at a quaint country pub in one of the trailside towns.
Snap a pic of the Wedderburn, the iconic shed from the Grahame Sydney painting.
See the 'big sky' landscapes that have put this region on the map.
Ride over historic railway viaducts and through tunnels.
Explore what remains of the famous gold rush.
The Lake Dunstan Trail is one of the region's newer trails, yet it has all the charm of an old fashioned adventure.
From Pisa Moorings, you will ride alongside Lake Dunstan into Old Cromwell Town before heading through Bannockburn and into Clyde.
This 54km ride features historic architecture in the Cromwell Heritage Precinct and also winds past the vineyards of some of New Zealand’s best winemakers.
Finally, the trail heads through the Cromwell Gorge where you will ride over sections built around into the rock faces above the lake. There’s something for everyone here.
Step back in time at the Cromwell Heritage Precinct, with boutique galleries, retail stores, restaurants and cafes.
Visit a vineyard in the Cromwell Basin and Bannockburn to sample the local wines with lunch.
Ride through Cromwell Gorge on trails built out around sheer rock.
Ride by New Zealand's third-largest hydro-dam, the Clyde Dam.
Enjoy cycling through lush landscapes on this beginner-friendly trail that can be done in either direction past small country towns dotted along the way.
The Clutha Gold Trail is a 73km-long stretch of gorgeous scenery between Lake Roxburgh Dam and Lawrence.
Scenic mountain ranges serve as a dramatic backdrop for this multi-day bike adventure over historic paths.
If you're feeling up for it, there are also links to other trails so you can cycle your way across more of Central Otago’s stunning landscapes!
Get the best of both worlds with a cycling adventure and exhilarating jet boat ride all in one.
This 34km trail will take you from the Lake Roxburgh Dam through to Clyde, with a quick jet boat ride in the middle on the Clutha Mata-Au River.
This short respite from pedalling gives you the opportunity to see a different side of the area and gives you views of some hard-to-find landmarks, including the old gold miners’ huts.
Once you’re back on land and in the saddle, the trail takes you through to Alexandra and Clyde where you can sample the local produce from the orchards and vineyards.
Length: 34km (1 day)
Marvel at the natural colours on display; the blue water, grey schist, purple thyme, and willows and poplars - green or gold depending on the season.
Stop off in Alexandra and sample the local produce from its renowned orchards and vineyards.
The trip up to the Fraser Dam is a tough uphill ride if you’re looking for more of a challenge.
At 10.5km in length, this will take riders between 1.5 and 2 hours depending on your fitness level. While it might require more effort, you’ll be rewarded with stunning views from the top.
Length: 10.5km (half day)