Nelson’s Great Taste Trail is part of the National Cycle Trail Network, and will eventually cover a distance of 162 – 175 kilometres around the Nelson region offering easy, family friendly touring through a wide variety of landscapes.
The first section of the trail is now completed and runs largely off road between the village of Wakefield and Kaiteriteri near the Abel Tasman National Park. This delightful ride on a well formed trail begins in Wakefield, set near the foothills of the Waimea plains, and travels through a classic heritage landscape dotted with vineyards, apple orchards and market gardens, before reaching the Tasman Bay coastline near Richmond.
It then follows the coastline around the Waimea Estuary to Rabbit Island, a council reserve, with recreation areas and pine forest, to the old Mapua wharf, a small boutique area of interesting shops, cafes and a brewery. The final leg across to the wharf and Mapua village from the island is across the estuary by special bike ferry. Clients can stop for a swim on the expansive Rabbit Island beach.
The Great Taste Trail has some special tasting experiences, including wineries, craft breweries, little cafes, fresh seafood, fruit and pick-your-own berries during the summer months. We’ll also help you explore iconic Nelson attractions like WOW(World of Wearable Art), art, crafts, breweries and vineyards
Simply Wild Journeys have been offering guided mountain biking and cycling trips in Nelson since 2006, and the trail is a natural addition to our trips. We offer a range of options for clients who wish to enjoy the easy riding on the trail.
Cycle from Wakefield to Mapua on one day, and Mapua to Kaiteriteri the second day guided or freedom riding with us supporting you. We can provide both special trail style bikes (more upright and comfortable), or traditional mountain bikes.[tab:Itinerary]
The trail begins in Nelson City, or the little country village of Wakefield. We generally suggest you start in Wakefield, after which you cycle to Brightwater, then Richmond. This section is firstly through farmland, then vineyards and market gardens. Distance 15km. On the outskirts of Richmond, the trail turns west to follow along the edge of the Waimea estuary, with great sea views, before crossing to Rabbit Island (Pine plantations) where it eventually follows alongside the sandy beach sea side of the island. At the end of the island a dedicated bike ferry transports bikes and clients across the estuary to the little boutique seaside village of Mapua. Distance 20km.
We recommend staying near Mapua for the night as the cafe/restaurants are excellent, and sit beside the sea/estuary.
On the second day we will collect you and drop you off back at Mapua at the trail with your bikes. The next section to the town of Motueka begins along the coastline, before climbing inland toward the rolling farm and vineyard land of the Moutere area, with great views of both Abel Tasman and Kahurangi National Parks. There are two great café options along the trail. Distance 26km.On reaching Motueka the Trail again meanders along the sea to Riwaka, then passes through apple orchards on its way to the beachside village of Kaiteriteri. The last section climbs through native beech forest and joins an extensive mountain bike park which begins and end at the village. Distance 16km. If you wish to end here we will transfer you back to Nelson.
We will look after your luggage each day and return it to you each night.[tab:Included]
Bikes, helmets & gloves
Accommodation in Mapua
Ferry fares – Rabbit Island to Mapua
Cellphone for supported, self guided riding if you require it
We will also arrange accommodation for before and after your trip if you require it.[tab:FAQs] This is FAQs section [tab:END]