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“Good times riding”

Hauraki Rail Trail - Day Rides
Ranked #1 of 6 things to do in Paeroa
Certificate of Excellence
Attraction details
Reviewed January 23, 2014

What a sweet day out! We parked at Waikino- rode through the beautiful gorge and down the tunnel- take a decent torch- to Karangahake- from there it is an easy ride past the cows to Paeroa-
Had a nice lunch in a busy Courtyard café and then dawdled back to Karangahake- also took a great little side walk up to the Windows- brilliant and highly recommended- then we sidled around the gorge ( bit narrow in places) then back to the start
Excellent way to spend a leisurely 3 hours
Great to see so many people using such a wonderful track- very easy riding and appeals to all- also lots of cyclists and cars with bikes just hanging out in Paeroa
Not so great is the dodgy traffic in Paeroa backing out and almost hitting us more than once- a safer cycle lane needs serious consideration
All in all very highly recommended and a must do!!

1  Thank Grant U
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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53 - 57 of 109 reviews

Reviewed January 15, 2014

Brilliant! We parked in the DOC car park next to the Waikino railway station. The ride immediately took us through tunnels and over bridges in scenic bush meandering along Karangahake Gorge. The long dark tunnel through the cliff was a spectacular experience emerging to the beauty of Karangahake. I loved that there were options for exits to the winery, cafés and pub for refreshment. Next time I would take a headlamp for the dark tunnel.

2  Thank treajules
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 11, 2014

This ride was so much fun, and really easy. Nice and flat in most parts, and when there were hills they were so easy going we barely noticed.

We hired three bikes - 2 comfort bikes, and a kids mountain bike for our 10 year old boy. Our 4 year old daughter got towed in a buggy. It cost us $45 for each comfort bike, $40 for the child's mountain bike, and $40 for the buggy. They also give you helmets, free of charge. The buggy was so good. We couldn't have ridden the full 28 kms if we didn't have it. They also offer tag-along bikes which connect to the main bike, and the child sits behind with handle bars, and pedals but doesn't really need to contribute. As our daughter was 4 and the distance was too much for her we opted for the buggy. I towed her for the first 14 kms and my husband took her for the return leg. It was so easy to pull it behind my bike I was quite surprised.

The team at Thames were so good when we booked the day before. They don't keep the buggy or tag-along bikes at Waikino but they offered to bring them from Thames on the same day so we could start our ride at 11am. We were so happy they went the extra mile as we really wanted to do this ride with the kids, but didn't want to drive an hour to Thames just to get the equipment. Thank you Sarah!

The ride itself is easy going and picturesque. On the day we rode it there were a few other families and couples riding it, and the odd person on their own. Lots of older people too (around 60s) which was really nice to see.

We also had people walking the track so you'll need to beware. People are pretty considerate and get out of the way with a bit of a warning. Just a gentle "hello!" did the trick :-) There are loads of places to stop and have lunch, and toilets along the way. It's very safe because there are no cars sharing the track with you. Most of the way you can see the Karangahake Gorge.

Definitely worth doing if you enjoying being active with the family. Go on a sunny day and take lots of photos :-)

4  Thank Colleen J
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 8, 2014

I did this in two bites given I am a senior. First ride Waihi station along the gorge & through the Karangahake Tunnel to the car park on the other side & return - 30.8k's. Magical scenery, A swing bridge and some cool shade. A reminder to first timers of the steep incline at the Waihi end with a right angled turn at the bottom, the loose metal makes this a little hazardous for a beginner., I pushed my bike up the 3 slopes on my return visit, this was OK as I chatted to a guy with a dog and learned some of the history.
My next effort with a friend was Karangahake to Te Aroha & return- 56.83k's - with a much appreciated coffee & muffin break at Ironique cafe Te Aroha .There are 3 toilets and shelter spots en route plus a Devonshire Tea spot alongside the Tahuna Road.The actual ride took 3 .45hours.No steep slopes on this section.Very pleasant and our next venture will be to Thames.
I really liked it that there were family groups on the trail as well as a selection of seniors like myself.As mentioned by another reviewer- only time for one section Waihi to Karangahake through the tunnel and coffee at the Waikino station is the way to go.
No fee required

4  Thank Maggie J
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 7, 2014

We decided to do as much of the Hauraki rail trail we could do in a day from Te Ahora, where we wanted to stay the night. From here we biked to Waihi and back, 100k starting at 11:00am and getting back at 7:00pm after a leisurely days activities. Really recommend the rail trail on this basis if a scenic ride takes priority over adventure for you. The 23k from Te Ahora to Paeroa (international guests must try the "world famous in NZ" local drink, L&P or Lemon and Paeroa) is very pretty and flat, but the highlight is the ride from there to Waihi. The famous section through the Karangahake Gorge is stunning, with an awesome 1k long tunnel to bike followed by a rail bridge with stunning gorge views. The climb on this section is 100m, but it feels totally flat as this is spread over many ks. The gorge is the most crowded section, but it is just a lovely up to Wahino station, where great old gold mining industrial remains can be explored, and you can ride the vintage railroad to Waihi. The next newly opened section is maybe the most enjoyable in some ways as the trail follows the riverside to Waihi. This section is not flat, but undulating and great trail riding. In Waihi we had a great lunch at the Orchard Café.
We'll be back to ride the gorge again and complete the Thames section for fun. The trail is free so be sure to donate to the trust if you can.

4  Thank 90s
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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