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Biking to Mavora Lakes

The ride to Mavora Lakes is a wilderness journey that showcases Southland’s most stunning highlands. This smooth and safe trail winds its way between rugged alpine mountains, ancient glacial valleys, native beech forest and picturesque farmlands. This incredible ride is part of the ‘Around the Mountains Cycle Trail’ and it can be ridden in either of two directions.

Without a doubt, the most stunning access to the lakes begins in downtown Queenstown. The journey starts by crossing Lake Wakatipu on board the historic steamship TSS Earnslaw. From Walter Peak Station you’ll follow the Mt Nicholas farm road alongside the lake, before heading gently up through the head waters of the Von River, which lies under the watchful eye of the Livingston Mountains.

Bike Mavora Lakes

As you turn off Mount Nicholas Road and enter Mavora Lakes Road, the high country expanse will turn to lush native beech forest. Follow the forest road alongside South Mavora Lake until you find the lake head turn into the Mavora River. Follow the Mavora River through the forest until you reach the shores of North Mavora Lake. Keep an eye out for the rope swing along the river, the water’s an inviting reward after a good day in the saddle.

This is a true wilderness cycling experience on a quiet back road, and after your time in Queenstown, you’ll appreciate the peaceful surroundings! If you’re doing the ride solo, we definitely recommend camping on the shores of the Mavora River. Take plenty of clothing options - you’re in the mountains, and the weather can be quite changeable.

If you’re joining us on our ‘Weka’ trip, you’ll be fully vehicle assisted along the way (and you won't have to do any route finding!). At the end of the ride we’ll pick you up at North Mavora Lake. From there we’ll take a short and stunning drive to Te Anau Hotel. Here will be your base for the next couple of nights, so sit back, relax and enjoy a well-earned drink and home cooked meal as you share stories and photos from today’s epic ride.

Trip Reviews

  •   4.64 out of 5 (from 565 reviews)

    Thank You Active Adventures

    Active Adventures' Winter Rimu trip allowed me to experience many things for the first time. Coming from an island of Guam, I was able to see something so different than what I normally see in my backyard. It was my first time to climb up to 1,100 meters. The climb was at Sealy Tarns which overlooked a lake, Mt. Cook village and most especially a fantastic view of Mt. Cook. It was my first time doing an overnight hike as well. We trekked through the scenic landscape towards Mt. Aspiring hut and was rewarded at night with an unspoilt sky of the Southern Hemisphere. It was so clear that we were able to see the Milky Way (another first). We also did a hike up Alex Knobb to get a good view of Franz Glacier and on the way up, we experienced so much elements in one day. We experienced hail and snow (both for the first time) and enjoyed some picturesque views the more higher we climbed.

    From the beginning of the trip, Lynette and Miriam were wonderful at helping to book my trip with Active Adventures. During the trip, Mel and Gary were so hospitable and helped make the trip memorable. Mel and Gary understood that we haven't hiked at this capacity or weren't seasoned hikers, yet they remained with us at the back and encouraged us every step of the way. They helped to show the true essence of New Zealand's natural beauty as well as the friendliness and hospitality of Kiwis. This trip has been amazing and thanks to Active Adventures, New Zealand has become my favorite place in the world.

    Thank you for the memories and for these experiences. <3
    Analyn Palugod Review Image
    – GUAM, Guam
    Winter Rimu, July 2016
  •   4.60 out of 5 (from 1887 reviews)

    Awesome Tui Trip!

    My husband and I traveled to New Zealand for a late honeymoon and our adventure started with the Tui Trip which couldn't have been better! Between the amazing places we visited along the South Island from our unbelievable guides who quickly became friends, the trip definitely exceeded our expectations! We quickly learned how kiwis truly cherish and appreciate what their beautiful country has to offer and are so thankful to have had such a wonderful experience. New Zealand will always hold a special place in our hearts, along with our memories of hiking, biking, cheers-ing, and chatting with new friends. Thank you Koru and Liana, for making our trip so unforgettable!
    Lauren Hussey Review Image
    – New Hampshire, United States
    Tui, December 2016
  •   4.53 out of 5 (from 4983 reviews)

    Rimu Rocks!

    The trip was awesome! I met a great bunch of fellow travelers and now have family in New Zealand in Jackie and Emma! I felt like we saw a lot of the South Island in 2 weeks. I loved my first experience in New Zealand and plan on coming back in 2020!
    Terry McNamara Review Image
    – Michigan, United States
    Rimu, January 2018
  •   4.64 out of 5 (from 565 reviews)

    The Winter Rimu Trip was an unbelievable experience. It was the perfect combination of exploration and relaxation. Not to mention the food was phenomenal!
    Josh Moisand Review Image
    – Florida, United States
    Winter Rimu, July 2016
  •   4.70 out of 5 (from 266 reviews)

    A Marvelous Exprerience

    This trip was worth every penny. We had marvelous lodging that we could not have accessed on our own. Our access to trails, parks and activities was all arranged and all we had to worry about was showing up for the experience. We were truly touched by the extent to which our guides went out of their way to respond to our special food needs. I felt truly safe, supported by the experience, training and good will of our guides. I came home stronger and with new confidence that as an elder I can still take on physically challenging experiences and succeed. What a gift that is.
    Wendy Ball Review Image
    – New York, United States
    Kiwi, December 2017

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Why travel with Active Adventures?

Above all, we aim to be amazing hosts. We're proud of our kiwi roots, and our professional, warm and relaxed style of running trips around the world is unforgettable.

We're VERY picky about who we select to work in our team, and we have people from all over the world lining up to guide our trips. So we get to hire the absolute BEST in the business.

As soon as you get off the plane, we've got all the details of your vacation covered – top notch meals, comfortable transport & accommodation, amazing guides and INCREDIBLE service.

Whether you’re new to adventure travel, or you’ve never travelled in a group before, you’ll find yourself arriving home positively different from when you left.

With our small groups (no more than 14), you'll get to know our team, your fellow travellers, and have the flexibility and freedom to do as much (or as little!) as you like.

It's all about getting there under your own steam – on foot, in a sea kayak, or by bike. What better way is there to experience mind blowing scenery? If it's your first time, no worries – our expert guides have got you covered.

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