The Waikato River Trails lets cyclists and trampers get up close and personal with New Zealand’s mightiest river – and is a boon for local tourist operators.
The Trails form part of the New Zealand Cycle Trails network and are managed by the Waikato River Trails Charitable Trust.
They’re part of the Region’s ongoing commitment to making the South Waikato a “must visit” destination for tourists who prefer their holidays a bit more outdoorsy.
Starting at the village of Atiamuru in the south, the network of Trails meander their way up the river to Lake Karapiro 103 kilometres to the north.
Along the way visitors are treated to native and exotic forests, wetlands, (and all the wildlife that goes with them) volcanic outcrops, a gorge and even a few suspension bridges and dams.
There’s a thriving tourist industry linked to the trails too.
Over twenty tourism operators are dotted along the route, providing much needed services to trail travellers. These include cafes, accommodation, bike hire and shuttles.
Accessibility is a big plus. The natural serenity of the Trails is just a few hours travel from Auckland; the major metropolitan areas of Hamilton and Tauranga are even closer.
The Waikato River Trails Trust continues to enhance the beauty of the area, planting over 13,000 native trees every year.