Hiking and Biking Across New Zealand’s South Island

Take on the ultimate adventure across the rugged Southern Alps and wild West Coast of New Zealand; a real exploration of this pristine wilderness. From snow-capped towering peaks to exhilarating rivers, rugged single tracks and clean isolated surf breaks, this journey promises to deliver an array of next-level experiences for the adventurous traveller.

When to go
Nov-Mar
From Price
Ideal Length
12 Nights



Experience Highlights

  • Adventure alongside expert outdoor guides as you mountain bike, hike, pack-raft, fly-fish and surf in some of New Zealand’s most stunning backcountry terrain
  • Spend three days ascending the legendary Mt Aspiring, traversing glaciers and ice plateaus, conquering the most legendary routes of the Southern Alps
  • Navigate the winding Landsborough River, kayaking through dense rainforests and white-water rafting through tumultuous rapids, exploring untouched wilderness
  • With a helicopter at your disposal throughout your trip, head for renowned surf breaks only accessible by air or touch down on mountain peaks in ultimate seclusion

Owen River Lodge

Arriving at Owen River Lodge, you’ll meet the team, enjoy a hearty dinner and pour over the itinerary for the next few days of super-charged activities. Begin with a day of mountain biking, conquering New Zealand's premier backcountry single track, where you will shred through majestic native forest, open tussock tops and the forgotten valleys of the Lyell Range and Mokihinui River. Or, head to hidden trails in the epic Paparoa National Park, testing yourself on a character-building ascent and swooping downhill descents. This incredible backcountry single track was created in partnership with the West Coast, the Department of Conservation and the area’s indigenous Māori tribe, Ngāti Waewae.

Activities

After ripping up alpine single track, it’s time to head to the remote and wild West Coast. This day is all about activities in and around the ocean, nearby rivers and mountain streams. Surfing isolated beach breaks, free-diving, stand-up paddle boarding or fly-fishing backcountry streams for prized rainbow trout.

Aoraki National Par

Travel along the Main Divide to Aoraki National Park and Sir Edmund Hillary’s Everest training ground, the Southern Alps. Touch down at the ice plateau in the heart of the inaccessible Adams’ Wilderness for lunch, before hiking the Tasman Glacier, whilst en-route to your next base, Minaret Station.

Mt Aspiring Summit

This morning, head for the national park, where you will begin a three-day Mt Aspiring summit attempt. Complete the rugged French Ridge traverse before descending onto the breath-taking Bonar Glacier, towards the final staging ground for the summit. The Bonar Glacier is a spectacular display of power and primeval beauty in this icy wonderland. Expect a gruelling but incredibly rewarding 8-12 hr ascent., before returning to base, where you will have a chance to relax and explore the surrounds of the Minaret mountains.

Landsborough River

The adventure continues as you rise early for a day of pack-rafting. Hidden away in a remote zone at the heart of the Haast Wilderness, is the Landsborough River. Kayak through untouched country, past hanging glaciers and through dense rainforests. Typically, a multi-day trip, you’ll experience what the river has to offer in a single action-packed day. Here, your expert team will show you the lines with an emphasis on safety. Enjoy an exquisite riverside lunch, before heading downstream for more advanced white-water rafting. From here, head to The Lindis, where you will be within striking distance of the lower half of the South Island, where year-round southerly swells originate from the depths of the Southern Ocean, producing quality waves. With many breaks only accessible by air, enjoy a few days of surfing in ultimate seclusion.

Central Otago & Queenstown

Finish this epic quest with a bang, and what better way to do it than strapping downhill bikes to a heli and taking on one last stretch of the tough technical terrain in Central Otago where a groomed single track and steep downhill lines abound. Spend your final night in Queenstown, for an evening of fabulous fare and celebrations, before departing the next day, having succeeded in adventuring across New Zealand’s renowned South Island.

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