A must do: The Otago Rail Trail
The Otago Rail Trail is New Zealand’s original rail cycle trail, encompassing historic goldmining towns, country pubs and stunningly rugged Otago scenery.
The 152km trail opened in 2000, following the original route of the Otago Central Railway.
Cyclists can start or end the trail at either Middlemarch or Clyde, or choose a section of the trail along the way to suit their timetable.
The former railway line trail takes in historic towns such as Ophir, Omakau and Clyde as well as plenty of goldmining sites, historic buildings and old country pubs.
The compacted gravel pathway is easy to cycle or walk for adults and children of all ages, with childrens bikes, baby seats and child tow-alongs and trailers also available for hire at cycle hire outlets.
Many cyclists allow up to three to five days to complete the trip, covering approximately 35 to 40 kms per day to allow for extra activities along the route including fishing, 4WD adventures, horse trekking, or exploring the many fascinating goldmining sites along the way.
There’s plenty of options for dining and accommodation at each section along the trail, with cafes, restaurants, historic pubs and bed and breakfast options throughout.
Bike hire and bike transport companies can be found across the route, with many operating depots at both ends of the trail.
For more information on this exciting cycle trail, go to www.otagocentralrailtrail.co.nz.