Cycling Tours and Holidays | Wellington, Wairarapa & Kapiti, NZ

Experience the very best of the lower North Island, New Zealand

The perfect mix of cycling, sightseeing, cafes, restaurants and rest. RIDE holidays promise you a fantastic 10 days in one of New Zealand’s most scenic regions.

Cycle Tour of Wellington Wairarapa & Kapiti New Zealand

02-11 March 2019 (10 days /9 nights)

This is my playground. I was born and bred in Wellington and love the area for what it offers. The city is unique and the cycling is fantastic but challenging. For this particular itinerary I’ve pretty much included the best of the best. If I had 10 days spare then I’d simply roll out the following. Bike tours are all about finding the right balance. Non-riding partners are very welcome. I can’t wait to show you around. There are many hidden gems that only a local would know… See you soon.

Cheers Karl

Wellington Cycle Tour | Our Itinerary

Day 1 – Saturday 2 March

Wellington (NZ), Welcome... Your Holiday Begins

Kia ora, welcome to the coolest little capital in the world (that’s a fact). Arriving by early afternoon is encouraged. We’ll meet you at the airport and take you to our hotel where we’ll help put the bikes together. There will be time for a short spin around the bays just to make sure everything is working as it should (we have mechanics on standby for anything major).

Other than being a gorgeous city with a stunning harbour - Wellington is known for having fantastic restaurants and cafes. In fact, it has more restaurants per capita than New York and without a doubt the finest coffee on the planet. Over the next few days we’ll spend plenty of time on the bike however it’s just as important that we drink and eat well.

Tonight we dine together so we can discuss the plan for the next few days. And because you are in New Zealand….. we will eat sheep. And drink Sav. Any complaints? Thought not!!!

Welcome to the land of the long white cloud.

Accommodation – Wellington
Meals - Dinner

Cycle Tour of Wellington Wairarapa & Kapiti New Zealand

Day 2 – Sunday 3 March

Wellington Wind

I’ve spent my whole life riding bikes around Wellington. I can honestly say that the biking here is some of the best in the country. It’s exceptional. But hilly… and on the odd occasion - windy.

We start the day off by riding our bikes to a café that’s opening just for us. It has fantastic views of the city. We’ll be able to point out today’s ride route.

After breakfast we simply ride… ride for fun. We won’t be racing. The idea for today is to cover as much ground as possible and drink as much coffee as you can handle. We’ll start off with a 30km coastal ride which is flat as a pancake. And finish off with NZ’s 5th largest hill which offers stunning views of the South Coast as well as the South Island.

Most of us will cover around 80km (some shorter, some longer) today however that will include 1500m of climbing. A nice gentle start to your holiday.

Tonight we dine at the water’s edge. Actually, I mean on the water as we’ve chartered our own boat for a harbour, dinner cruise.

Accommodation – Wellington
Meals – Breakfast and Dinner

Day 3 – Monday 4 March

Something Different

We bike early and we bike rural. Within 10mins of the city center you are in farm land. Today’s ride is only 70km and that’s because we want to spend the majority of the day on foot. We’ve lined up a walking tour which features our top 10. A mixture of museums, art galleries, craft beer breweries, cafes and shopping. Oh, and Weta Workshop – home of where hobbits are made.

There’s a saying in Wellington “you can’t beat Wellington on a good day” And today I can promise you will be a good day.

Accommodation – Wellington
Meals – Breakfast (Dinner own arrangements)

Cycle Tour of Wellington Wairarapa & Kapiti New Zealand

Day 4 – Tuesday 5 March

Kapiti Island

All Wellingtonians know that there’s a Kapiti Island. A protected marine and bird reserve about 50km up the coast from the capital city. Completely free of those pesty possums Australia introduced a few years back.

What most people don’t know is that you can actually spend a night there and witness the birdlife first hand. Last time I was there we literally had Kiwis within 30 yards of our cabin. I’d say that 99.9% of New Zealanders haven’t seen a Kiwi in the wild. You’ll certainly get that chance tonight. And just to make sure - we’ve arranged for a guided 90min nature walk after dinner.

To get to Kapiti we have to ride. So, after breakfast we head out via the Makara Valley and then on to the Paekakariki Hill. We then drop down to the Kapiti Coast and spend the last 15km on a new cycle path. Again – not a long ride however fairly lumpy. You’ll cover about 70km today.

Accommodation – Kapiti Island (please note – this will be rustic. You may need to share space).
Meals – Breakfast and Dinner

Day 5 – Wednesday 6 March

Rimutaka Rail Trail

We start the day with an island breakfast before a quick ferry ride back to the mainland where our bikes are waiting. Our most challenging day so far awaits as we take on two fairly large hills. One on the tarmac and one via a gravel road. The first hill being the Aka’s (Akatarawa Mountain Range) which features on most Wellington strava profiles. It’s a personal favourite of mine as we pop out in the mighty Upper Hutt (think Monte Carlo) which is where I was born. All good things originate in the mighty Hutt.

And this is where our day gets interesting… After lunch we hop on to the Rimutaka Rail Trail. Starting on Wellington’s doorstep, this trail winds through the Rimutaka Ranges to the Wairarapa Valley and the mouth of the Orongorongo River. We will ride a 20km section which cuts through the bush-clad Rimutaka Mountain Range, passing through tunnels on an old rail trail before popping out in one of NZ’s top wine regions – the Wairarapa. It’s then only a short ride to our winery accommodation. What a bloody great day.

Accommodation – Wairarapa, Margrain Cottages
Meals – Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Day 6 – Thursday 7 March

Wine in the Wairarapa

I know a few of you who will book on this prior to me even releasing the itinerary. And I know that you like wine. So, here’s the deal. Some cycling and some wine. Any complaints?

The Y (Wairarapa) is well known for its lovely quiet roads and friendly traffic. It’s home to 4 or 5 fondo’s throughout the year. Yes, the cycling is that nice. Yesterday was a big day so today will be less taxing. About 80km. Our priority being the other attractions that this region has to offer.

This afternoon we start a walking tour of all the local wineries. You can justify that extra glass of Sav knowing that you will walk it off. This evening we recommend you stroll in to town and take advantage of one of the many restaurants on offer. Or maybe you will simply hit the pub which offers award winning pub grub.

Accommodation – Wairarapa, Margrain Cottages
Meals – Breakfast (Dinner own arrangements)

Day 7 – Friday 8 March

Day off... It's Your Holiday Isn't It?

Nah.. No day off. Sorry. You can rest next week.

We will shorten the ride though - given that some of you will have entered the 150km Bush Cycle Tour tomorrow. We’ll depart on our bikes after breakfast and head north towards the mighty Admirals Hill. In guiding terms I’d describe this as undulating. Some of you may consider it to be a stonka. Let’s compare notes after you’ve ridden it.

We’ll then have lunch in Masterton (almost as beautiful as Upper Hutt) and then drive North. Our home for the next two nights is the cosmopolitan metropolis of Pahiatua. Home to the Ride Holidays cycle festival that features tomorrow's Bush Tour (fondo).

We’ve booked out a lodge (retired hospital) for the whole weekend. Everywhere you look will be pink and navy as all our loyal clients descend upon Pahiatua. Be prepared for live music, great food, very little sleep and to meet lots of friends.

Accommodation – Pahiatua, Masters Hall (please note – very simple clean accommodation)
Meals – Breakfast and Dinner

Day 8 – Saturday 9 March

The Bush Cycle Tour

It’s not the biggest sportive in the world however it’s growing. And we plan to make it the best. This is the first year that RIDE Holidays have really got in behind it. We’re expecting up to 100 of our loyal clients to ride today. For us it’s all about quality and the Bush offers that in spades… Quality course, Quality Organisation and Safety, Quality post event entertainment, food and drink. And the start / finish is only 4km away from our accommodation.

Speaking of the start…. It’s in the grounds of the iconic Tui Brewery. That’s got to be a good thing. You can choose between three distances. All feature stunning rural roads. It’s not overly challenging. You won’t see a Mont Ventoux however you will see some top notch local food when you arrive at the finish. We’ve bought local. Even the lamb cutlets were secured from a neighbouring paddock. And the event raises money for the local charity.

Accommodation – Pahiatua, Masters Hall
Meals – Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Day 9 – Sunday 10 March 

Back to Wellington

A short ride prior to a late breakfast. Let’s get the legs moving. Let’s see if we can find a coffee cart. Maybe the RH coffee cart will make an appearance.

We say goodbye to all our fellow RH mates and head back towards Wellington. It’s about a 3 hour drive although we will stop for lunch somewhere. This afternoon is all about packing down the bikes and doing that last minute shopping. Our hotel is very central.

It’s been a blast… Just look at what you’ve achieved.

  • Spending three days in the coolest little capital in the world
  • Kiwi spotting on Kapiti Island
  • Cycling the fantastic Rimutaka Cycle Trail
  • Vineyard cycling in the Wairarapa
  • The RIDE Holidays cycle festival at the Bush Tour

And plenty of other great memories.

Let’s raise a glass tonight over our final dinner together. Again we’ve picked a favourite restaurant. You’ll need some nice clothes for this one…

Accommodation - Wellington
Meals – Breakfast and Dinner

Day 10 - Monday 11 March | Last day of your holiday!

Home James 

Our time together finishes after breakfast at a local cafe. May as well conclude with a strong coffee. That’s how we started this trip almost 10 days ago.

Thank you for travelling with RIDE Holidays. We look forward to seeing you again soon.

Safe travels

Enquire Now Book Now

Cycle Tour of Wellington Wairarapa & Kapiti New Zealand

Cycle Tour of Wellington Wairarapa & Kapiti New Zealand

Cycle Tour of Wellington Wairarapa & Kapiti New Zealand

Our Cycle Tour | Inclusions and Highlights

  • Pick up and drop off at Wellington International Airport
  • All breakfasts, 7 dinners, 2 lunches
  • 10 week training program designed around this trip
  • Explore Wellington’s Weta Workshop and Te Papa Museum
  • Eat at Wellington’s finest restaurant
  • Ride New Zealand’s 5th longest hill
  • Cruise Wellington’s beautiful harbour
  • Ride the iconic Rimutaka Cycle (Rail) trail
  • 90 min Kiwi spotting guided walk while staying on Kapiti Island
  • Various wine and beer tastings
  • RIDE Holidays cycling festival which includes the Bush Tour (fondo)
  • Local tour guides throughout and mechanical assistance on standby
  • RIDE Holidays (Wellington 2019) cycle jersey
  • Souvenir tour booklet
  • Support vehicles when needed
  • Multiple ride options for varying abilities
  • GPS routes and physical maps
  • 5 star accommodation in Wellington, 4 star in Martinborough.
  • Acc on Kapiti & at Bush Tour – Rustic but comfortable

Tour Cost (per person)

$4490.00 NZD per person (Twin Share)

Want your own room? Single room supplement $850.00 (subject to availability on Kapiti)

Bike Hire: $550.00 NZD (Late model, carbon bikes)

The initial deposit of $750.00 is 100% refundable up until 01 August if you change your mind. At which time you can then cancel or confirm your place by paying an additional $750.00. You will then be committed and the deposits will be non-refundable.

Cycle Tour of Wellington Wairarapa & Kapiti New Zealand

Cycle Tour of Wellington Wairarapa & Kapiti New Zealand

Cycle Tour of Wellington Wairarapa & Kapiti New Zealand

Cycle Tour of Wellington Wairarapa & Kapiti New Zealand

Cycle Tour of Wellington Wairarapa & Kapiti New Zealand

Cycle Tour of Wellington Wairarapa & Kapiti New Zealand

Enquire Now Book Now


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