A compact, buzzing city surrounded by rolling hills, steep peaks and epic trails, Christchurch offers a huge variety of cycling terrain – and it’s set to get even better with the construction of a new $20 million, 358-hectare mountain bike park. Expected to open in December this year, the Christchurch Adventure Park will feature more than 100km of downhill trails, a 1.8km chairlift and 2km of zip lines through the forest.
Once completed, this will be the largest park of its kind in the southern hemisphere. We’re excited about what this means for cycling in Christchurch – which is already crammed full of opportunities. From laid back city cruising to more challenging, rugged terrain, here’s a guide to what Christchurch has to offer.
See the city
Pedal power is a great way to discover Christchurch’s many attractions like the Cardboard Cathedral, the Re:START Mall (made up of shipping containers) and the extraordinary Gap Filler Projects which pop up around the city at random. Or take a spin around Christchurch’s iconic Hagley Park, which offers 5km of gently-meandering, tree-lined tracks. It’s a great spot for families and especially stunning in spring and autumn.
Head to the hills
Looking for tough climbs and exhilarating downhills? The Port Hills are just ten minutes from the city centre and offer plenty of uphill slogs and exhilarating downhills, as well as vistas that stretch all the way from the Pacific Ocean to the Southern Alps. Popular routes include The Kiwi Loop, Dyers Pass and Summit Road. You’ll find maps on the Christchurch City Council website. (Also a good place to check for track updates before you ride).
Lose yourself for a few days
South-east of the city lies Banks Peninsula. Formed over six million years ago by the violent eruptions of two volcanoes, the resulting craters now form the harbours of Lyttelton and Akaroa. One way to reach the peninsula is to cycle the Little River Rail Trail, which runs from the edge of Christchurch to the township of Little River (mainly flat and off-road riding) From Little River, numerous routes, hills and tracks beckon and you can easily spend several days navigating the quiet back roads and spectacular scenery.
Excited to ride Christchurch? We can set you up with bike hire, route ideas and insider information. We also run guided tours of the Port Hills and Little River Rail Trail. Drop us an email to get your Christchurch cycle trip underway.
Have a great week,
P.S. We’re currently in the process of upgrading our Christchurch bike fleet – we’ve got some exciting new deliveries arriving soon which are going to make biking in Christchurch even more fun! We’ll keep you posted…
Image: Re:START Mall. Shelia Thomson.