Matawai — Gisborne (1-3 days, 103km)
Rolling hills and sealed roads make the Rere Falls Trail a comfortable ride for those who want to experience the treasures of one of New Zealand’s most remote regions.
Meandering along quiet country roads the trail takes you alongside lush hill country farms through to the wineries and maize fields of the fertile Poverty Bay flats.
The Rere Falls Trail stretches from rural Matawai to the long white beaches of Gisborne. The trail joins the Motu Trails to provide the ideal cycle link between Gisborne and Bay of Plenty.
RIDING THE TRAIL
Matawai to Gisborne (103km, 1-3 days) – Grade 3 Intermediate
The trail can be ridden in either direction – though you’ll get the best views (and more downhill riding) starting from the historic village of Matawai.
From Matawai you will traverse a wild landscape along 28km of smooth gravel road enjoying gorgeous vistas, sometimes with snow capped peaks, and possible encounters with wild pig or deer.
The trail then follows sealed roads down through rolling hill country, farms, and forest reserves. Highlights along the way include the unique Rere Rockslide and the iconic Rere Falls; natural features to view or jump in and experience first-hand.
Eastwoodhill, the National Arboretum of New Zealand with its stunning display exotic and native trees is on the trail. Walking tracks cover the 135 hectare gardens past many rare and unique species and accommodation is available.
The Trail carries on down to the Poverty Bay Flats. The fertile plain is home to some of Gisborne’s finest vineyards and wineries and the cycling is easy.
The trail takes you along Gisborne city’s riverside cycle and walkway to the i-SITE in between the city centre and some of New Zealand’s most stunning beaches.
The trail can begin or end in Gisborne, a major regional centre with a well–serviced airport, fine restaurants and accommodation.
Gisborne is connected by daily flights from Auckland and Wellington. Buses travel between Gisborne and Matawai daily.
Bikes can be hired in Gisborne and transport organised with local cycling businesses.
There are limited services on the trail, so you are advised to carry sufficient water and food for the duration of your ride. Always pack warm and weatherproof clothing as weather conditions can be predictable in the inland parts of the ride. You will be riding between mountainous conditions and a warm coastal breeze.
There is limited mobile phone coverage, toilets and drinking water available.
Accommodation is limited and it is recommended that you arrange your overnight stays prior to departure.
Cycling past Eastwoodhills Arboretum
The Gisborne district has warm summers and mild winters which means the Rere Falls trail can be ridden all-year round.
Gisborne is one of the sunniest places in New Zealand with average yearly sunshine of around 2200 hours.
The region’s annual rainfall varies from about 1000mm near the coast to over 2500mm in the higher inland country. Temperatures of 38°C have been recorded and an average 65 days a year have a maximum of over 24°C.
Weather conditions inland can be changeable and are generally colder in the winter than the weather conditions at the coast.
Please be sure to check weather conditions before you depart.