Cycle Trails in Whakatane You Can’t Miss!
If you like two-wheeled adventures then Whakatane is an amazing place to be. The city on the coast of the eastern Bay of Plenty is home to a few mountain bike parks, as well as a short drive away from some of the best backcountry cycle experiences in the North Island. What’s more, any level of rider can enjoy a cycle trail in Whakatane, whether it’s a cruisy riverside ride or an adrenaline-fuelled run through the Whirinaki Forest. We’ll go through some of the highlights in this list of bike trails in Whakatane!
While cycling in Whakatane is a must-do, don’t miss the other amazing activities in the city, including these 11 Amazing Things to Do in Whakatane. You might also want to try some of the 10 Must-Do Walks in Whakatane or these 18 Free Things to Do in Whakatane.
1. Burma Road (Grade 1-3)
Ride through bush and farmland on this easy-going cycle trail in Whakatane. The Burma Road has two options: The Burma Road Loop Track (10km Loop) or the Burma Road Alternative Route (15km). The first trail starts at the Maraetotara Reserve in Ohope. Ride up Maratotara Road which quickly turns into a gravel road. You’ll reach an intersection where if you keep going straight, you’ll continue on the Burma Road then the cycleway alongside the Ohope-Whakatane Highway leading back to the start. The second option is if you turn left at the intersection which leads to the Rawhiti Mountain Bike Park (see below). Take a look at Mountain Biking in Whakatane for more details.
Location: Maraetotara Road, Ohope.
2. Warren Cole Cycleway (Grade 1)
For a bike trail right in the heart of Whakatane, the Warren Cole Cycleway is your answer! This very easy cycle trail is a breeze to ride with lots to see along the way. Ride alongside the river passing sculptures, the Whakatane wharves, and salt marshes where you’re likely to see lots of birds. The ride is 4.5km between Whakatane River Bridge and the Whakatane Heads. Be aware that this cycleway is shared with walkers.
Location: Access is via multiple points between Landing Road and Whakatane Heads.
3. Onepu Mountain Bike Park (Grades 2-3)
Whakatane has a lot of mountain biking trails to offer, and a great place to start is the Onepu Mountain Bike Park. Enjoy over 15km of mountain bike trails suitable for any level of rider, with a few BMX-style jumps that you can either tackle to the fullest of simply ride over them. The uphill climbs are steady, so getting around the park is easy enough.
Location: Braemar Road off State Highway 30.
4. Whirinaki Mountain Bike Trails (Grade 2-4)
The most stunning mountain bike trails in Whakatane is well worth the drive deep into the Whirinaki Forest. There are two epic mountain bike trails to choose from: Moerangi Track (Grade 3-4) and the Whirinaki Mountain Bike Track (Grade 3). The Moerangi Track is a 35km single track with a few forestry road sections. The trail is getting well-worn so look out for big drops here and there. The whole ride is about 5-7 hours, but if you take your time there are backcountry huts to stay in along the trail. The Whirinaki Mountain Bike Trail (Grade 3) is an easier option with 16km of trail to enjoy. Allow five hours to complete the trail.
Location: Ruatahuna Road, at the end of Fort Road off State Highway 38.
5. Rawhiti Mountain Bike Track (Grade 3-4)
Another outstanding mountain biking venue is at the Rawhiti Mountain Bike Park, with more than 15km of trails! Choose from the easy kids’ loop called the Lollipop to something much more adventurous like the Sleepyhead with jumps and drop-offs. You will need to purchase a permit to enter the park, which is only around NZ$5 for a 2-week pass or NZ$25 for a season pass available at the Whakatane Information Centre.
Location: Link to the Rawhiti Mountain Bike Track via the Burma Road (see above) or by car by parking at Burma Road off Wainui Road.
6. The Motu Trails (Grade 1-4)
One of the Great Rides on the New Zealand Cycle Trail, the Motu Trails are three different trails linked together to provide an awesome backcountry cycling experience. The trail takes riders along the coast and into the bush between Opotiki and Matawhai. Either ride them all or just choose one of the trails, with plenty of shuttle services and bike hire in Opotiki to keep you right. Head on over to The 3 Motu Trails: Bike Trails in Eastland & Bay of Plenty for more information.