Queenstown & The Milford Mountain Classic

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Queenstown, Milford Sound Lodge & Te Anau

17 - 21 February (5 Days / 4 Nights)

New Zealand's Southern region is without doubt spectacular. And, COVID gives us the unique chance to ride roads that are normally filled with campervans and tourist buses. Every cloud offers a silver lining and this opportunity is one that we plan to take advantage of.

The absolute cycling highlight for 2022 will be the sportive from Milford Sound to Te Anau. The Milford Mountain Classic. We'll join hundreds of lycra clad friends for a once in a lifetime opportunity to ride this very special (but hilly) road as it journeys through the UNESCO Fiordland National Park. This event will not exist once tourism is back up and running. 2022 could just be your last chance.

Ride Holidays will take the hassle out of this short minibreak. We've included transfers, guides, mechanics, meals and of course the standard RH friendliness.

Your host will be Jon Bridges.

Tour Details

Tour Inclusions & Highlights

  • 1 night Te Anau, 1 night Milford Sound Lodge and 2 nights back in Te Anau staying at the Distinction Hotel. (superior room)
  • Entry into the Milford Mountain Classic (value $150.00)
  • Meals - All meals except for lunch on the Sunday
  • Host - Jon Bridges
  • Mechanical support
  • RIDE Holidays cycle jersey
  • Milford Sound cruise

The Tour Price Excludes

  • Airfares and extra accommodation
  • Alcoholic beverages
  • Travel insurance
  • Sports bars, gels etc. We will supply bananas, electrolyte powder etc

    The Tour Cost

    • 5 days / 4 nights NZD1990.00 per person twin share
    • NZD490.00 extra for your own room. Subject to availability at Milford Sound Lodge which is horrendously expensive.
    • Non-rider cost NZD1500.00 (includes hotels, meals, transfers, Milford Sound cruise)


    • If you would like a night or 2 in Queenstown then that is easily arranged. The RH hotel in Queenstown is the Peppers Beacon. Including breakfast, the rate is NZD270.00 per night (for 2 people) We can also organise transfers etc.
    • Upgrade to a River View Suite at the Milford Sound Lodge for an extra $200.00 per room. (not per person)
    • Doubtful Sound full day excursion $220.00 per person
    • Kepler 5 hours (jet boat and walk) $240.00 per person

    Terms and Conditions

    Deposit & Balance terms and conditions. There is no initial deposit. We will monitor the COVID situation and ask $250.00 deposit 120 days prior to departure. The balance to be paid 60 days prior to departure.

      Queenstown Minibreak 2021 Cycle Tour Itinerary

      Day 1 - Thursday 17 February

      Queenstown to Te Anau

      Thank you for booking on Ride Holidays Milford Mountain Classic trip. Welcome to Queenstown - New Zealand's premier year-round holiday destination. Famous for its beautiful scenery and most importantly - adventure activities and that certainly includes road cycling.

      We suggest you arrive mid to late morning. We will have multiple midday transfers departing for Te Anau. Both from the airport as well as Queenstown downtown. Please make sure that you have lunch, coffee before we depart as the plan is to drive non-stop to Te Anau (2hrs) if possible. That allows us plenty of time to put the bikes together and head out for a short spin this afternoon.

      Our Te Anau hotel is centrally located. This picturesque town is the main visitor base for the glacier-carved wilderness that is the UNESCO Fiordland National Park and the finish line for Saturdays Milford Mountain Classic.

      Tonight, we've picked one of Te Anau's restaurants - it's important we start appropriately. We introduce the team and run through the plan for tomorrow. Fiordland National Park awaits.

      / Accommodation - Te Anau Distinction
      / Meals - Welcome Dinner

      Ps, we are happy to arrange accommodation for those wanting to arrive in Queenstown early.

      Day 2 - Friday 18 February

      Milford Sound

      It's about a 2-hour drive to Milford Sound. We depart at about 10am. Plenty of time for you to caffeine up at Sandfly café. With a bit of insight (luck) we booked room for 30 people at the magnificent Milford Sound Lodge. We can wake up tomorrow and relax as 300 odd cyclists have to travel 2hrs to get to us. Latte please!!

      I'll let the hotel website description take over from here…. And I quote…… "Slow down, breathe deep and stay the night on the doorstep of one of New Zealand's most iconic natural landmarks, Milford Sound. Here, in one of the wildest places in the South Island, discover one of the finest accommodation experiences. A collection of secluded and stylish chalets with a front-row seat to the spectacle of Fiordland and its waterfalls, rushing rivers and towering peaks."

      Those who want to ride - we suggest an out and back from the lodge. It's good practice for tomorrow. You can choose 20, 30, 40, 60km. Turn around when you've had enough.

      Late this afternoon we venture out on to Milford Sound for a 2hour cruise. There's no point in coming to one of the wonders of the world without having a look.

      Tonight, we've asked the Pio Pio restaurant to organize a pasta buffet. Some of you need fattening up. By the way - just in case you were wondering because I was. The Pio Pio is an olive-brown thrush-like songbird, Turnagra capensis, which was probably extinct by the mid20th century so please sing out if you see one.

      / Accommodation - Milford Sound Lodge
      / Meals - Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

      Ps, for those who want to experience something really special we are offering a helicopter transfer which will take you directly from Te Anau to Milford Sound.

      Day 3 - Saturday 19 February

      Milford Mountain Classic

      Well - today is that day. Very exciting. It is without doubt one of the most scenic sportive's in the world. Can't wait to get back there.

      By now you would have trained and mentally prepared for either the Meridian Milford Mountain Classic which involves 122km and 1760 VM. Or the Ricoh Homer Hundred - 100km starting at the Homer tunnel. There's also the Fiordland Lobster Eglinton Challenge which offers 65km of picture paradise cycling. (we will run the 65km and 100km riders to the start at about 11am)

      Let's talk you through the day. After breakfast you can relax. Polish your bike. Yoga. Go fishing. There's nothing to be done right up until the 12noon start time. That gives all the domestic traffic the chance to get off the road.

      Here's a pretty good description of what you can expect.. The 122km ride starts at sea level and for the first 5km it is not much more than a false flat (climbing about 100m) before the road rises sharply. Over the next 14km you climb constantly to about 900m above sea level followed by a 12km decent to the foot of the Divide. The Divide is about a 200VM climb over 2kms. The remaining 85-90km is mainly flat or a gentle decent. Ride Holidays will be at the halfway point with a full selection of fuel, epo and anything else you require.

      This evening we've booked a local hotel. We've also employed a professional to put together a short video on today's festival of cycling. We'll play it on the big screen while RH gang of 60 has a few beers or a glass of wine together.

      / Accommodation - Te Anau Distinction
      / Meals included - Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

      Day 4 - Sunday 20 February

      UNESCO Rest day

      Today is designed around rest and relaxation. Yes - it's a holiday. (kind of)

      We start with the official event breakfast where we watch many RH clients collect their gongs. Well-deserved one would say.

      It's then a gentle recovery (in fact - there's up to 100km if you want to) coffee ride.

      Or…. we can arrange a day trip to Doubtful Sound. Cruise across beautiful Lake Manapouri and over Wilmot Pass to Deep Cove where you will board our catamaran for a three-hour cruise taking in the dramatic scenery of Doubtful Sound. This would be my suggestion for Team Mac.

      There are a huge number of walks which we can recommend - including the challenging Kepler track. We've booked a 1pm jetboat for those wanting to walk (6km) a condensed version of the track.

      Tonight, is our farewell dinner. Good times, great company, awesome ride……

      / Accommodation - Te Anau Distinction
      / Meals included - Breakfast and Dinner (Lunch is own arrangements although is included for the Doubtful Sound people)

      Ps, please talk to Karl if you would prefer heading back to Queenstown today. We are aware quite a few of you have already visited Te Anau and Doubtful Sound.

      Day 5 - Monday 21 February

      Home James

      After breakfast we'll take you back to Queenstown. Please don't book flights before midday. We are more than happy to run you in to town if you'd like to extend your stay.

      Thank you for joining us. Let's do it again next year.

      Safe travels home,

      Karl & Jon,


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