For Australian Cyclists travelling and touring OS
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I'm planning to cycle NZ's North Island in January and wonder if anyone has cycled in the Coromandel Peninsular. I believe it's hilly, but that's okay (I live in the Blue Mountains), but does anyone know if roads are okay, best routes, general attitude of drivers - planning on taking my road bike. Any advice would be welcome.
I have done a bit...yup it is hilly if you are going over the ranges...but going round the coast isn't too bad....there are very few roads there!.
Roads are narrow but there isn't "too" much traffic, especially the further north you go.Drivers in NZ are not really looking out for cyclists so be a bit careful on blind corners / oncoming traffic etc.
Road bike will be fine...but mtb will be more fun if you want to get really dirty ...some good off road riding around there.Road surface is dead and gives you a good workout.
I wouldn't worry too much as it is pretty safe...although you will notice a hell of a lot of cyclists in NZ wear fluro vests!.
Edit...OK just saw you are going in Jan...will be a fair bit of traffic on the roads.
thanks toolonglegs... I'll have you know I wear a fluro vest (sometimes)
I guess I'm concerned that with so few roads, all the holiday traffic will be concentrated on narrow roads, looking at the views and not noticing the cyclist up ahead. My other option is Northland where there may be even fewer roads and less traffic, but still the same problems.
Northland will have a lot less traffic ...I lived in Kawakawa as a kid ...probably changed a bit now.But yeah there are not many non-main roads up there either.Been a long time since I have travelled up there so can't really comment too much.
Waikato is good...a lot more back roads and lovely rolling terrain.
MTB?....Rotorua etc.Plus there are a lot of long distance mtb rides if you have a car to get to the trail heads.
+1 to the Rotorua and Taupo area for MTB as there are lots of trails.
Coromandel, parts of Northland (e.g. Waitangi, Russell) get very busy after Xmas and around New Year as they are popular holiday spots. Taupo and Rotorua are as well but if you are off road it's not bad.
Generally the roads in NZ are narrower than in Australia and the shoulders are pretty much dirt.
Recently a bike path (part of a wider National bike path scheme) has opened the first 180 km's (?) of a path through the Waikato. Have a search on www.stuff.co.nz.
I was in Wellington a couple of weeks ago and managed to get a couple of rides in. No problems with cars giving me space, being patient etc. The only problem was I was either doing 45 kph or 15 kph (bl00dy wind)!
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