The Trail’s five sections each vary in length from 23km to 55km. Riders can comfortably traverse one section in a day, or select shorter routes for sightseeing and more leisurely biking.
Kaiaua to Thames – 55km (5-6 hours)
Shuttle to the seaside village of Kaiaua where the trail begins, following the edge of the Firth of Thames. At the Pūkorokoro–Miranda Shorebird Centre you can learn about the area’s birdlife and Bird-hides offer the chance to view the shorebirds up close.
Expansive views of coastal wetlands, farmland, and the Coromandel Ranges provide a spectacular backdrop. Refreshments are available in Waitakaruru, Pipiroa, Kopu and Thames.
From the Kopu Bridge the trail turns north towards Thames. Brimming with history it’s full of character with plenty of dining and accommodation options. As you approach the town, enjoy the sculptures along the community’s Arts Trail.
Riders can shuttle from Thames, or add on the extra 34kms (3-4 hour) journey to Paeroa.
For riders wanting to pick up the pace, combine two sections of the Trail and ride from Paeroa through Te Aroha, and south to Matamata. Riding beneath Mount Te Aroha, stop and explore the quaint township with its domain, spa pools, and walking tracks.
The ride heads further south, crossing over the active train line that passes under the Kaimai Ranges. The Firth Tower is worth a visit, as is the Hobbition Movie Set, where visitors can experience the real Middle-earth as featured in The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit Trilogies.
Riders can return by shuttle to Paeroa, or start their ride from Matamata.