If you are given the chance to go mountain biking in New Zealand and can only choose one place, it has to be Rotorua. This might raise an eyebrow for some but there are good reasons behind it. When it comes to Downhill Mountain biking, Rotorua is obviously the best choice. There are two major mountain bike parks namely, Skyline Gravity Bike Park and the Redwoods Forest. Other than that, there are other scenic trails that you can choose from. You can switch from beginner course to advanced trails real fast. Here are the top biking paths on Rotorua that await you:
The Redwoods Forest
The Redwoods is also known for its other name, the Whakarewarewa Forest. It boasts 150 kilometers of exciting biking trails. Yes, you read that right. The Redwoods has a vast number of mountain bike trails that have made it an international favorite. Of course, that means it caters to all levels of mountain bikers. Families and novice bikers can take refuge in The Dipper which allows for easy weaving through the redwood trees. Other than that, intermediate and advanced riders can also blast their way through the Outer Core Network.
Tuhoto Ariki Trail
A great place to start for intermediate to advanced riders is the Tuhoto Ariki Trail. It’s quite interesting to know that this 5-kilometer route is filled with history. This trail has been named after Maori tohunga who somehow predicted the eruption of Mount Tarawera back in 1886. There are two ways to get to this trail. One is from the Rotorua City Centre or from The Redwoods Visitor Centre.
This 19.1-kilometer trail passes through the Lake Okataina Scenic Reserve. As you may have imagined, this trail will offer a first-hand view of the magnificent sceneries in the area. You may also ride the course in both directions. There are steep and challenging inclines as well as exciting downhills. However, be careful with your speed as bikers and hikers share the route.
Te Ara Ahi
If you’re looking for more eye-candy along the trails, you should go through Te Ara Ahi. It’s one of the most magnificent trails that Rotorua has to offer. The entire course spans 48 kilometers. It begins at Rotorua City Centre, which will then lead you through a geothermal field where you can gaze upon the marvelous power of geysers. Be prepared, though, as the entire ride will be long. It’s best suited for intermediate and advanced riders. The trail ends at the Waikite Hot Pools. There you’ll be able to relax and get your strength back after a tiring run.
Rainbow Mountain MTB Loop
There are three tracks that form a 7-kilometer loop at Rainbow Mountain. The first is Te Tihi o Ruru, which offers challenging inclines that later on leads to the Rainbow Mountain summit. Of course, all of the pedaling will be worth it when you are able to gaze at the breathtaking panoramic views. The second track is a downhill blast called Te Ranga which leads to a natural hot spring called Kerosene Creek. Lastly, riders can traverse to the bottom through Te Ara Ahi, completing the entire loop.