This Christmas we decided to head for a few roads we hadn’t previously ridden – or roads which had changed since we last visited them. After a busy year at our desks, we opted for days of about 350-400kms

Starting with a night spent under the stars courtesy of Rob in Kaikoura on Christmas day night, we headed to the North Island where we ate, drank and chatted our way around. Boxing day got us across the Cook Straight and as far as Otaki for our overnight stop.
** Note – don’t plan an overnight stay in Otaki….**

Day 2 was a cracker day: Otaki, Apiti, Taihape (hello to new friends Chris and Sandra met over lunch!) then a grinning trip over the Gentle Annie to Napier.

Day 3 – I had been looking forward to this for a long time – we went through Lake Waikaremoana from Wairoa to Murupara and on to an overnight stop in Taupo. We were expecting 30-40kms of gravel, we got about 100kms of VERY rough going – definitely not recommended for anyone without an adventure bike (or an over sized adventurous spirit!).

Mission Accomplished!

Mission Accomplished!

Day 4 – We left Taupo and headed through Whakamaru (hello to new friends Vicki and Aaron), Te Kuiti then Marokopa for lunch, then down through to Awakino and on to Stratford.

Picton sunrise as we docked at 6am

Day 5 – a day off staying with friends Alistair and Leonie – thanks guys, was great to catch up!

Day 6 – through the Forgotten Highway, coffee with Bob and Annie, and onward to New Year’s Eve in Ohakune.

New Year’s day and we revisited the Whanganui River Road – a little busier now it has been fully sealed but still incredibly pretty. Fordell, Vinegar Hill and onwards to a big and bountiful family BBQ courtesy of Alasdair and Fred before catching the overnight Bluebridge Ferry to Picton.

Breakfast at the Beach House café in Kaikoura which never disappoints, and home before the traffic on SH 1 got too busy.

A VERY Happy New Year!!

…and if you’d like to follow in our footsteps….

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$ New Zealand dollar