November 27, 2016

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New Zealand Cycle Touring Route - Around Mount Taranaki




This ride around Mount Taranaki takes in all of the highlights of the Taranaki province. Taranaki is dominated by Mount Taranaki which is snow covered and dramatic volcanic cone. On the ride around the mountain you may not always see the mountain because of cloud but it but it is always there. Taranaki is a farming area with dairy farming the main activity. When you cycle around Mount Taranaki you will encounter lots of hills as the countryside can best be described as undulating and you will also have to deal with the winds coming from all points of the compass. One memory of our ride in Taranaki was the wind assisted ride into Hawera which was slightly downhill where we reached speeds of up to 50 kilometres an hour without peddling.

Mt Taranaki Ride Video




We started the ride in Stratford and went in the anti-clockwise direction around the mountain and on the first day went to Te Wera Valley Lodge and stayed there for two nights. This enabled us to ride to Whangamomona but this is an optional extra but well worth doing as you travel on the Forgotten Highway. There are two saddles to climb as you ride to Whangamomona and of course you have to ride them on the way back.
Cycleway into New Plymouth

The next section of the ride crosses to the coast to Onaero Bay. From Onaero Bay the route takes you into New Plymouth using the cycleway that runs along the coastline from the Bell block. This is a fantastic cycleway that significantly enhances the foreshore along the coast and the city. The only problem is navigating from the road into New Plymouth onto the cycleway. The road signage and maps need to be improved to make the route to the cycleway obvious. The highlights of Taranaki include the gardens both in New Plymouth and also the gardens in the surrounding areas. The route includes a visit to the Pukeiti Gardens which are just out of New Plymouth going south and are well worth a visit. New Plymouth has good cafes and there is the impressive Govett Brewster Art Gallery to visit.

Cape Egmont Lighthouse


From
To
Distance
Stratford
Te Wera
43.3
Te Wera
Whangamomona
24.5
Whangamomona
Te Wera
24.5
Te Wera
Onaero Bay
60.8
Onaero Bay
New Plymouth
26.9
New Plymouth
Pukeiti Gardens
23.3
Pukeiti Gardens
Cape Egmont Lighthouse
30.0
Cape Egmont Lighthouse
Opunake
25.2
Opunake
Hawera
53.1
Hawera
Stratford
39.3
Total

350.9

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