Day 228 on the Road
Exploring Akaroa by eBike!
Today we are joining Bicyclette for an eBike tour around the stunning Banks Peninsula. If you like this video and want to see more 365 Days: 365 Activities in New Zealand then jump on over to our epic YouTube Channel!
Update: Bicyclette is not currently operating.
Today we are cheating our way by biking all around the Banks Peninsula.
This morning we are waking up in the beautiful township of akaroa once again and we are joining the team from Bicyclette which means bicycle in French, for a bike tour around the beautiful Banks Peninsula.
Ensure that your helmet is on just in case something really scary happens.
Yes, it’s the law in New Zealand, if you bicycle on public roads you have to wear a helmet. The safety vest though is just extra security. not like the roads around the Banks Peninsula are going to be super busy but you know what. Better be safe than sorry.
And because the Banks Peninsula is known to be mostly uphill downhill uphill downhill we are using e-bikes today. Kaz our tour guide quickly shows us how to use them and then we are on our way.
We get a short while to practice on these really funky ebikes before making our way to the waterfront of Little Akaloa we are only 2 minutes into our bike ride and already we want to take pictures of this beautiful landscape.
Little Akaloa is just one example of the beautiful hidden bays and inlets of the Banks Peninsula and we’re gonna be seeing a lot more of that today. But up ahead we can see a very steep road going up alongside the hills of Little Akaloa but that’s no issue for us considering we have these really awesome e-bikes.
Our bikes have three different power assistance modes from power assistance, more assistance to turbo boost which really helps us get up this huge hill to the top where there’s a beautiful Anglican church situated overlooking the bay.
The St Lukes Church is the perfect example of the cohabitation of so many different cultures on the Banks Peninsula. the church from the outside looks like a normal church but as soon as we get inside we see heaps of stunning Maori carvings on every single wall and wooden piece of the entire church.
The church was built in 1906 using stone from Mt Somers which is in the Canterbury region this is basically around the place where we went to visit Edoras, if you guys remember.
We are now back on the road of the beautiful Banks Peninsula our tour is a one way tour meaning that we are basically going to be riding all around the Banks Peninsula and finishing in a completely different spot of where we started. Then from there we’re gonna be picked up by the team, load up up the bikes on the car and make our way back to our accommodation tonight.
This tour is an awesome way to make the most of a sunny day on the Banks Peninsula. The bikes are making the whole experience super easy so we never are out of breath and we always have plenty of time to chat with our guide and get the most of her knowledge. it’s impressive how much she knows about the Banks Peninsula and how many fun facts she has for us.
From the top of these hills, we can see rolling green farmland and vibrant blue waters as far as the eye can see but Kaz tells us that the Banks Peninsula didn’t always look like this. About 98% of the Banks Peninsula was once covered in native forest.
After human settlement on the peninsula, much of the forest was cleared but a lot of farmers in the area are grouping together to bring back some of this native forest which is really awesome.
Kaz also tells us about the volcanic history of the Banks Peninsula as well. Unlike a lot of the South Island which is mainly made up of mountains and tectonic activity. The Banks Peninsula is the most prominent volcanic feature in the South Island. That probably explains all the hills but the awesome thing about hills at some point you’ve got to go down them and that’s what we love about biking.
One of the main things that I’m taking away from this tour is how big the Banks Peninsula is. Because we’re going on so many uphill and downhill we get a ton of viewpoints all around all the little inlets of the Banks Peninsula which is not only the town of Akaroa. Most people that do visit the Banks Peninsula stick with only Akaroa and it is such a shame because there is so many hidden gems around the area.
And for us the best thing is that well there are roads everywhere so we can go everywhere but there are almost no cars so we basically have the entire road to ourselves which is perfect for us joking, biking and chatting together competing with each other on the first on top of the hill and making the most of those super fast ebikes.
The final point of our tour today is gonna be the beautiful Okains Bay. It’s one of the most famous bays in the whole Banks Peninsula. it’s because it’s a volcanic beach meaning that it’s black sand and it’s super iconic for amazing picture opportunities. You get the beautiful white water washing on the dark sand with both sides of the inlet being covered with cliff and native bush. How awesome is that?
Just the thought of that is getting us to power through the whole ride. Actually we don’t need to power through because the bike is doing all the work for us so it’s basically just a glorious downhill from there. We are speeding our way through the beautiful place of Okains Bay.
Before we end our bike ride though we can’t resist going onto the beach itself and checking out the Okains Bay beach. We see loads of campers on the edge of the beach meaning that it must be an awesome place to camp. there’s also a huge Maori presence here as well there’s a Maori carved museum and we’re gonna be checking out more of Okains Bay in a couple of days time when it hosts the Waitangi day celebrations. But for now we’re wrapping up our bike tour and loading the bikes onto the trailer when the team from bicyclette are dropping us back to our accommodation in Akaroa.
Can you hear me, Laura?
Yes, you’re recording.
Can you hear the song of my people? Can you hear me Laura? Can you hear the scream of my people?