|The Otago Central Rail Trail|
I think this was my favorite thing we have done in New Zealand, really! It was a bit of a dream come true, because I have always wanted to do an overnight bike trip. It was even better than I had imagined. The landscape was incredible (I felt like I was riding through a painting). To top it off, we had a wonderful dinner at the only restaurant in Oturehua and the most relaxing stay at a great B&B that used to be the old shop for the general store in town.
The Otago Central railroad was 150 km of rail linking Clyde to Dunedin and all of the small gold mining towns in between. The railroad shut down in the 1990s, but instead of going to waste, someone had a brilliant idea to rip up the rail and create the Rail Trail for bikers, walkers and horseback riders. Now these towns cater to bike riders rather than gold miners. We rode 84 km of the trail from Omakau to Oturehua (where we stayed the night), then on to the highest point on the trail on day two before heading back to Omakau. We met a lot of New Zealanders who were riding from one end to the other in about five days, but after two days of riding on gravel our bodies were pretty tired.