Fun family cycling these school holidays

Spin your way around Hawke's Bay this summer with boundless cycling options for you and your family. Cruise along the seashore, jump and berm your way around the pump tracks, descend the mountain bike trails or try something in between. 

From complete beginner tracks to trails for the adrenaline junkies, here are some of our favourite cycling pit stops for the school holidays!

Junior Bike Skills Tracks

The Napier and Hastings Junior Bike Skills Tracks are popular spots for kids’ cycling. The Napier track is a miniature replica of a roading system with road signs, traffic lights and roundabouts. Aimed at children up to 10 years old, it is a safe place to develop cycling skills. The Napier tracks are all fully fenced, with a gated off padded area for the very wee-ones. For the adults, there is a permanent coffee cart, an ice cream shop nearby and good shade and seating right beside the sea.

The Hastings Cycle Skills Track has a similar layout with an easy 2-km cycle path loop as well as a new Pump Track.

Junior Bike Skills Track, Marine Parade Napier

Pump Tracks

The Napier Pump Track is a great little cycling activity, perfect for little ones and pros alike. The track caters for a wide range of skills, abilities and ages, and can be used by keen skateboarders and scooter riders too. The maze of pump tracks is smooth concrete, covering 500m. There’s a steep downhill start before riders’ skills are tested with a series of rollers that can be ridden over, in theory without the need to pedalling if you can maintain speed. There are berms to test your skills further and some very narrow tracks that test control.

If you don't mind getting down and dirty, try the Taradale Dirt Park and Pump Track. A small family-friendly beginner to intermediate level dirt jump park, a full-size pump track and an extreme dirt jump park – all free access for general public use. The dirt park is located over the stopbank beside the Pettigrew Green Arena in Taradale. Free, fun and a good place to stop off with the kids!

Hastings Pump Track, Tomoana Road

Hawke's Bay Trails: The Easy Sections

Napier's must-do ride is along Marine Parade's foreshore reserve and beyond. The reserve is Napier's main playground, sporting several wheelie good family attractions. Marine Parade is the starting point for a great half-day sightseeing ride. It follows the Water Ride north around to Ahuriri, where you can stop for coffee and ogle the boats in the marina before pushing further up the coast to Westshore and Bayview. Snapper Cafe is located just as you enter Bayview at the Napier Beach Top 10 Holiday Park. An awesome little cafe to stop and treat yourself to a cold drink and a bite to eat. Approximately 25 km for the full return trip.

On a hot summer’s day, you can't beat a cruisy ride through old, graceful trees along the Tutaekuri River followed by a pit stop at the iconic Puketapu Pub for a cold drink and a snack. The Puketapu is a charming, award-winning country tavern and is the perfect place to stop for coffee, cold drinks, snacks or authentic kiwi pub-style meals. It also has a good store with plenty of snack foods. Approximately 18km of cycling trails to explore!

Leisurely ride the Tukituki Cycle Trail as you explore Central Hawke's Bay. With high-quality limestone trails on the stopbanks on both sides of the Tukituki River, this trail offers a lovely loop of easy contour riding. This trail provides excellent access to the river for other recreational activities such as picnicking, swimming and fishing. There is another trail that runs on the true left of the river (upstream from Waipukurau) leading to the unspoiled Lindsay Native Bush Reserve and the Limestone Water Race Tunnel. Approximately 5 - 22km worth of cycling trails to explore!

CHB Trails 600x400 4

 Central Hawke's Bay Trails

Pan Pac Mountain Bike Park

Just 10 minutes’ drive north of Napier in Eskdale is the Pan Pac Mountain Bike Park, one of New Zealand’s largest mountain bike tracks. Like most New Zealand bike parks, it is in a commercial pine forest on steep slopes. Most tracks are hand-made and feature switchbacks, rollers, jumps, side exposure, roots, drops and jumps. There are a wide variety of tracks from beginner to more advanced. Reasonably priced at $10 for a 3-week visitor permit, which goes towards maintaining the tracks. Great signage and challenges, well-maintained tracks, and amazing ocean views from the top. There is also a heap of nature to behold, listen to the birds chirping and the frogs croaking and don't forget to take plenty of water in the summer heat!

Pan Pac Mountain Bike Park, Eskdale

Te Mata Biking Trails

One of the most loved and visited places in Te Matau-a-Māui Hawke’s Bay, Te Mata Peak Park offers a great range of mountain biking tracks for the whole family. The Park is a great place for mountain bikers with trails for all levels from Grade 2 (easy) to Grade 6 (extreme). The park is also popular with walkers and runners, so riders are encouraged to take care when biking near people who are hiking the park on foot. Enjoy the fun, flowing trails cleverly built through the outstanding landscape of the Park.

Te Mata Peak Park, Havelock North

Wairoa River Cycleway

The Wairoa Township Riverside Walk & Cycleway winds 5kms along the banks of the Wairoa River. The ride starts from Wairoa's historic Portland Island Lighthouse, following the Wairoa River Walkway alongside the river into the CBD, and then to Pilot Hill, where the river meets the sea. A recent extension of the pathway makes this now 7.9 km trail a coastal walkway too, ending at Whakamahia Beach Scenic Reserve. The walkway has become a mainstay in the recreational activities of both residents and visitors alike. On any day of the week, people can be seen enjoying the pathway, whether it be taking a stroll, running or cycling with the family.

Wairoa River Walk & Cycleway