The Alps 2 Ocean Trail EASY cycle tour features 203km of cycling on the easier sections of the Alps 2 Ocean Cycle Trail.
The Alps 2 Ocean Trail EASY tour features 32% cycling on sealed roads, 62% cycling on gravel cycle trails, and 6% cycling on gravel roads. The riding is rated Grade 1 and there are a few gentle hills that can be skipped if desired.
This tour is a great alternative to the full Alps to Ocean Trail EPIC cycle tour for those wanting a more relaxed and ‘pain-free’ cycle experience. There is ample time for exploring the glacial lakes and alpine towns, and general ‘mountain-gazing’.
Vehicle support available throughout the cycle tour. Refer to our Level of Difficulty gradings for more information.
Alps 2 Ocean Trail EASY Cycle Tour Highlights
- Cycle 203km on the easier sections of the Alps 2 Ocean Trail
- Take in the amazing and majestic vistas of the Southern Alps
- Cycle beside the surreal aqua blue glacial lakes and hydro canals
- Visit a high country merino sheep farm, Glenbrook Station
- Admire the engineering of the Waitaki Valley hydro scheme
- Step back in time in Oamaru’s splendid Victorian Precinct
- Star gaze in the ‘Aoraki Mackenzie international dark sky reserve’
Day 1 Christchurch – Twizel
The Alps 2 Ocean Trail cycle tour gets underway as we head south across the plains towards Geraldine. After a lunch stop we continue into the Mackenzie Basin, driving past Lake Tekapo to Lake Pukaki and the start of our cycle trail ‘great ride’. Alternatively we can organise a bus transfer from Queenstown to Tekapo. The first 6km cycle ride section is on a sealed road providing a good opportunity to get familiar with your bike. You then enter the cycle trail on the Lake Pukaki foreshore, featuring fantastic views of Aoraki Mount Cook and the snow-capped Southern Alps, all the way to the spillway (9km). Enjoy a refreshment break at the Lake Pukaki foreshore before embarking on the final section of the day on the 10km bike trail across the Pukaki Flats to Twizel (10km) featuring great views of the immense Mackenzie Basin and the late afternoon sun falling across the Benmore Range. Check into our comfortable accommodation for the next two nights.
Cycle Distance: 25km
Day 2 Twizel
This morning we ride out of Twizel on the glorious flat and sealed canal roads, towards Lake Ohau (20km). At the lake enjoy views of the Barrier Range over morning tea, before cycling the Alps 2 Ocean trail Ohau weir section (19km) around the edge of the lake and on to Lake Ohau Lodge. We enjoy lunch here, and there is plenty of time to relax and enjoy yet more million dollar alpine views. We take a side trip to the head of the lake and into the glacial valley where it feels like you can literally reach out and touch the mountain tops. On the way back to Twizel we stop off and visit Glenbrook Station. Glenbrook is a 3700 hectare farm running merino sheep and beef. Enjoy a relaxing afternoon tea in front of the homestead before taking a tour around the (lower parts) of the station, learning about the merino sheep and how they are farmed by our hosts the Williamson family. Our farm visit is a great opportunity to lean the merino wool story and see first hand the wool product, from the farm to the finished product.
Cycle Distance: 39km
Day 3 Twizel – Otematata
Today we ride the Quailburn section of the Alps 2 Ocean Trail to Omarama, featuring more great views of the surrounding mountains (24km), where there is also the opportunity to explore an historic woolshed. After lunch, the next 13km cycle section takes you from Omarama to Sailors Cutting, following the lakeside of Lake Benmore. Here we load up and travel to Otematata and our accommodation.
Cycle Distance: 37km
Day 4 Otematata – Oamaru
We farewell the Mackenzie Basin and travel down the Waitaki Valley. Our ride commences at the Benmore Dam and takes us around the side of one of the great hydro lakes of the valley, under the cool shade of the willow trees (22km). We then travel to Kurow for lunch, before riding on from Kurow to Duntroon (28km). This section features an ancient Maori rock drawing site which can be explored. In Duntroon explore the township and enjoy a beverage in the country hotel before we transfer a short distance to the town of Oamaru and our accommodation for the next two evenings
Cycle Distance: 50km
Day 5 Oamaru
We head to Duntroon and commence the last day of our spectacular Alps to Ocean bike ride. We leave the river valley and head inland through North Otago countryside, home to the unusual limestone ‘Elephant Rocks’ to Prydes Gully (19km). Enjoy cycling the final 33km section through very attractive looking ‘English’ countryside, from Windsor via the Botanical Gardens to Oamaru, finishing up by the sea at Friendly Bay. Enjoy a celebratory meal together in the historic Victorian Precinct of Oamaru.
Cycle Distance: 52km
Day 6 Oamaru – Christchurch
Have a well deserved lie in and leisurely breakfast. Spend the morning taking in the sights of the amazing Victorian precinct of Oamaru. We head back to Christchurch arriving at approximately 4:30pm. Alternatively catch a travel connection through to Queenstown, arriving at 7:20pm.
Cycle Distance: 0km
18 Aug 2019
22 Sep 2019
6 Oct 2019
27 Oct 2019
10 Nov 2019
1 Dec 2019
15 Dec 2019
12 Jan 2020
2 Feb 2020
16 Feb 2020
1 Mar 2020
15 Mar 2020
22 Mar 2020
29 Mar 2020
12 Apr 2020
26 Apr 2020
What’s included in the tour package?
- 5 nights twinshare en-suite accommodation
- 5 evening meals; 4 lunches; 4 breakfasts (indicated by B/L/D in the itinerary)
- fruit, snacks & morning teas on the trail
- the services of a tour leader who provides vehicle support & information
- cycle repair support
- farm visit and afternoon tea at Glenbrook Station
- all transport from/to Christchurch
- commercial guiding fees on the Alps 2 Ocean Cycle Trail
- Goods & Services Tax of 15%
Not included in the tour package:
- wine; beer; espresso coffees
- lunch on Days 1 & 6; breakfast on Day 6
- bike hire ($190) or e-bike hire ($450)
- single accommodation supplement ($400)
- Queenstown to Tekapo transfers Day 1 ($40 approx)
- Oamaru to Queenstown transfers Day 6 ($63 approx)
Alps 2 Ocean Cycle Trail – Concession Partner
The Alps 2 Ocean Cycle Trail showcases New Zealand’s geological, geographical and historical highlights from the Southern Alps to the Pacific Ocean. PureTrails New Zealand’s Concession Partner membership with the Alps 2 Ocean Cycle Trail is assisting this new trail to become established as one of NZ’s premier cycle trails. As a commercial tour operator PureTrails New Zealand pays $5+ GST per person for every half day spent cycling the trail.
Our Guiding Team
Tour Leader (since 2018)
Megan has a background in interior design and art tutoring as well as a restaurateur. She currently runs a design consultancy and an Air B&B by the beach in Christchurch, and is revelling in supporting, hosting and sometimes taking her guests out for adventures.
Megan has travelled extensively herself, both within NZ and abroad, and has just completed the Old Ghost Road (mountain bike trail) for the second time. Megan looks forward to the opportunity to show off NZ and share her experience, passion and love of the outdoors with PureTrails.
Tour Leader (since 2018)
John has had a long career in the NZ Police, with time spent in the Search & Rescue & Alpine Cliff Rescue teams. During this period John spent a lot of time rock climbing and caving all over the South Island, leading to an enduring love of the NZ outdoors.
Outside of work John enjoys getting out in the hills hiking and cycling as well as swimming. John played rugby and water polo and still enjoys following these sports. He looks forward to meeting lots of people and sharing his love of the outdoors with PureTrails.
Tour Leader (since 2019)
Robin lives in the alpine Canterbury village of Hanmer Springs where he is kept busy trapping opossums (a significant pest here in NZ!) Previously Robin has worked in the motor trade industry and operated a rural Christchurch Press round for many years. His hobbies include golf, fishing, automotive restoration, gardening and road bike racing. Robin looks forward to sharing his stories on the Alps to Ocean Trail trips.
Tour Leader (since 2017)
Kevin has recently retired to Ohoka, Christchurch, after working 35 years as an IT manager in the Education and Local Government sectors. Both Kevin and wife Karen are passionate about the outdoors and have participated in most North and South Island cycling events. Kevin is a keen sportsperson, a doting grandfather (aka Pop) and has recently rekindled his love for acrylic landscape painting. Kevin joins the team after having completed two PureTrails tours with friends (as a customer!) and looks forward to introducing visitors to spectacular South Island vistas and rewarding cycling adventures.