Ever wanted to explore everything that New Zealand has to offer from the seat of a Motorcycle? Then look no further! Our Guided Motorcycle Tour of New Zealand is the ultimate New Zealand adventure ride!
This tour is sure to excite your senses with all the delights of one of the most diverse and accessible countries in the world. Your route will take you from beautiful fjords and ancient alpine glaciers in the South Island to stunning sub-tropical beaches in Northland, with a huge variety of magnificent scenery and experiences in between.
Starting in Christchurch and ending in Auckland, traveling the full length of New Zealand from Bluff in the deep South to Cape Reinga in the far North, your 5,700km (3,500mi) route includes the best of what New Zealand has on offer and promises not to disappoint!
Suited to a wide range of rider experience and ability, from intermediate riders to experienced pros. You will be fully supported by our riding tour guides, supplied GPS routes, and a luggage & support van so you can ride freely each day without the hassle of cumbersome gear on the bike.
We can guarantee at the end of each day you will have a different, amazing, and unique experience to discuss with your friends over a well-earned refreshment, and great New Zealand food. Don’t delay, the tour is limited to 12 riders maximum for an exclusive experience and for group safety.
Immerse yourself in Nature’s wonders – parrots, seals, dolphins, whales, albatross, rainforests, glaciers, the world’s best unspoiled natural scenic beauty is here in New Zealand. And no one offers all of this and the time to enjoy and savor each location more than Big Bike Tours!
Join Big Bike Tours for a ride you will never forget!
This Guided Motorcycle Tour of New Zealand showcases a great selection of the country’s spectacular landscapes, remote wildernesses, and hidden treasures. The roads in New Zealand are excellent with flowing deserted highways, sweeping curves, and some great twisty sections, perfect for the ultimate riding experience.
You will not be disappointed with the scenery with a diverse range of jaw-dropping vistas, unforgettable natural landscapes, and spectacular views, you will experience many different highlights every day!
Tour Highlights: Rakia Gorge; Lake Tekapo; Mount Cook Views; Hydro dams; Moeraki Boulders; Catlins Coast & Lighthouse; Bluff – bottom of the South; Classic Motorcycle Museum; Te Anau & Milford Sound; Glenorchy & Queenstown; Crown Range; Southern Lakes; Haast Pass & Waterfalls; West Coast Glaciers; Punakaiki Pancake Rocks; Hanmer Springs Thermal Resort; Kaikoura Coastline; Queen Charlotte Sound; Interislander Ferry; Forgotten World Highway; Moki Tunnel; Lake Taupo; Rotorua Geothermal Areas; Maori Culture; Martha Mine; Coromandel Peninsula; Bay of Islands; Cape Reinga & Lighthouse; Hokianga Harbour Ferry; Tane Mahuta; Whangarei Falls; Auckland City of Sails
|TOUR OPERATOR||Big Bike Tours / Kiwi Motorcycle Rentals|
|DEPARTURE/RETURN LOCATION||Christchurch (New Zealand) / Auckland (New Zealand)|
|DEPARTURE TIME||The tour will start at 8.30 am the day after the arrival day.|
|RETURN TIME||The tour will finish after breakfast at the hotel on departure day.|
|Our team has planned and designed this tour based on years of riding, travel experience, and contacts throughout New Zealand. The routes, sights, and experiences have been selected to showcase the best New Zealand has to offer. We have taken all the hard work out of organising such an epic tour, so you can truly sit back in the saddle and enjoy the Adventure!|
Please be informed, that we offer the best cost-benefit ratio for motorcycle touring in New Zealand. You can completely focus on your holiday, the adventure, the riding, and the incredible New Zealand. Come ride with us – the real deal!
CHRISTCHURCH – LAKE TEKAPO – DUNEDIN – INVERCARGILL – TE ANAU – MAGICAL MILFORD SOUND – QUEENSTOWN – FRANZ JOSEF GLACIER VILLAGE – WESTPORT – HAMMER SPRINGS VILLAGE – PICTON – WELLINGTON CITY – STRATFORD – FORGOTTEN WORLD HIGHWAY – TAUPO – GISBORNE – ROTORUA – THAMES – PAIHIA – AHIPARA – AUCKLAND
(Distance: approximately 5,700 km / 3,550 miles)
Day 1. Christchurch, Arrival
Upon arrival, we will meet you at the airport and drive you to the hotel (recommended arrival to Christchurch, no later than 3 pm). Welcome to New Zealand, Land of the Long White Cloud. Our Tour begins from Christchurch, Garden City. Spend the day exploring and relaxing, a City Tour by Tram is a great way to get around! At 5 pm, we meet for a welcome briefing and motorcycle handover and welcome dinner with the tour group, tour crew, and guides.
Day 2. Christchurch – Lake Tekapo (266 km, 4 hours)
Transfer to the Kiwi Motorcycle Rentals depot. The day starts with check-in, rider briefing, and motorcycle pick-up at the Kiwi Motorcycle Rentals depot. Ride south via Rakaia Gorge and the Inland Scenic Route to the farming town of Geraldine for the lunch stop. In the afternoon continue to Fairlie and the brilliant turquoise blue Lake Tekapo.
Day 3. Lake Tekapo – Dunedin (317 km, 5-6 hours)
Continuing south via Omarama and passing the lakes and hydroelectric dams along the Waitaki River system to the East Coast and the town of Oamaru. A short stop to view a picturesque beach featuring unique sphere-shaped boulders on the sand at Moeraki before arriving in Dunedin city.
Day 4. Dunedin – Invercargill (266 km, 4-5 hours)
Entering the far south of New Zealand the tour travels through lush green sheep farming country via Balclutha and the rugged but picturesque Catlins Coast before arriving in the capital of the south Invercargill. Our special route today skirts the white sand beaches of the Catlins Coastline for mile upon mile. The roads are deserted and the scenery is stunning. We may be lucky enough to see an ancient fossilized forest on the beach if the tide is out. We finally arrive at New Zealand’s most southern point where there will be time for photos before arriving at the small city of Invercargill.
Day 5. Invercargill – Te Anau (238 km, 4 hours)
Enjoy free time in the morning to view the “Classic Motorcycle Mecca” museum in Invercargill before departing to Bluff and visiting the famous road sign and the bottom of the NZ mainland. Ride along the southern coastline then turn north into a more rolling farm country to Lake Manapouri and spectacular Lake Te Anau.
Overnight in Te Anau (2 nights).
(Laundry service possible)
Day 6. Te Anau - Milford Sound - Te Anau (235 km. 3 hours riding - or rest day)
Ride the 177km each-way road to Milford Sound and experience a 2-hour boat cruise in the majestic fjords of this beautiful wonderland, this is considered one of the best natural tourist attractions in New Zealand and an experience not to be missed. Alternatively, have a rest day and enjoy the local sights of Te Anau.
Overnight in Te Anau.
Day 7. Te Anau - Queenstown (172 km, 2 hours - optional 263 km, 5 hours)
From Te Anau tracking north via the spectacular shores of Lake Wakatipu to the popular tourist destination of Queenstown. Your choice to spend the afternoon relaxing or checking out the local attractions and adventure activities such as jet boating, paragliding, or bungee jumping! For those keen to do some more riding there is the spectacular road to Glenorchy at the top of the lake with some of the filming locations from the Lord of the Rings movies.
Day 8. Queenstown - Franz Josef Glacier Village (353 km, 5-6 hours)
Climbing the spectacular zig-zag road up and over the crown range to Cardrona Valley and beautiful Lake Wanaka. The tour then continues via the lakes through the spectacular native forests of the Haast Pass to the rugged and deserted West Coast with its fantastic glaciers.
Day 9. Franz Josef Glacier Village - Westport (273 km, 4 hours)
More scenic coastal highway riding up the fantastic West Coast via Hokitika and Greymouth before a stop at the unique Pancake Rocks and blow hole at Punakaiki, before arriving at the remote farming and mining town of Westport.
Day 10. Westport - Hammer Springs Village (216 km, 3 hours)
A shorter riding day today leaving the West Coast via the spectacular twisty roads of the Buller Gorge and fantastic open flowing curves of the Lewis Pass, a motorcycle rider’s dream! Arriving in the resort town of Hanmer Springs in the early afternoon you can enjoy the rest of the day relaxing and soothing in the thermal hot pools.
Day 11. Hammer Springs Village – Picton (337 km, 5-6 hours)
Heading East again towards the fabulous Kaikoura Coastline with its twisting and winding hills and rugged coastline. Stopping in Kaikoura for lunch then continuing north through the fabulous Marlborough wine country and Blenheim. If time is going well experience an extra loop around Havelock and the spectacular twisting curves of Queen Charlotte Drive to the port town of Picton.
Day 12. Picton Ferry & Wellington City (Ferry Trip, 4 hours)
Today is a transit and rest day, boarding the Interislander Ferry and traveling from the South Island to the North Island. This 4-hour ferry ride sails from Picton through the spectacular fjords of the Marlborough Sounds then over the Cook Straight to New Zealand’s capital city Wellington. Enjoy the rest of the day checking out the sights and relaxing in Wellington.
Day 13. Wellington – Stratford (384 km, 5-6 hours)
After a refreshing break in Wellington, there is a big riding day ahead, traveling over the hills and into the Wairarapa region and Masterton, stopping in Palmerston North for a lunch break. Then it is on past Ohakea Airforce Base and Whanganui into the Taranaki region with great views of Mount Taranaki the great conical extinct volcano.
Day 14. Stratford - Taupo (via the Forgotten World Highway) (292 km, 4-5 hours)
Leaving the Taranaki region heading further north via the ‘Forgotten World Highway’ and Whangamomona, this twisty backcountry route is an NZ favorite. Taumaranui is next before a short deviation south to get great views of NZ’s largest active volcano Mount Ruapehu, and its smaller neighbouring mountains Mt Ngauruhoe and Mt Tongariro before finishing up at the lakeside tourist town of Taupo.
Day 15. Taupo - Gisborne (359 km, 5-6 hours)
After another fantastic lakeside setting the tour continues east over the Tarawera ranges and via the beautiful farm and forestry landscapes of Hawkes Bay to Gisborne.
Day 16. Gisborne - Rotorua (274 km, 4 hours)
A shorter day riding through the beautiful backcountry of New Zealand takes the tour to the geothermal tourist town of Rotorua, the Maori culture capital of NZ. Spend the rest of the day relaxing or enjoying the mud pools, geysers, and geothermal activity, plus the famous sulfur smell of the area! Optional Maori Culture concert in the evening.
Overnight in Rotorua (2 nights).
(Laundry service possible)
Day 17. Rotorua (Rest Day)
A rest day relaxing and enjoying Rotorua. Take a ride up the gondola and experience the luge ride or a boat trip on the lake. For those keen to ride some more miles, there are other local geothermal activities in the area, a tree canopy walk experience, or a ride to the Raglan coast and back. Lots of options to fill the day or chill out and relax.
Overnight in Rotorua.
Day 18. Rotorua - Thames (350 km, 5-6 hours)
Leaving the geothermal areas and riding an hour to Tauranga and Mount Maunganui for a morning tea break, before heading further north via Whangamata to the spectacular route 25 loops around the Coromandel Peninsula, another motorcycle rider’s favorite. Finishing in the small seaside town of Thames.
Day 19. Thames - Paihia (339 km, 5-6 hours)
A transit day from the beautiful Coromandel to the stunning Bay of Islands. Transiting through Auckland city and over the harbor bridge, stopping for lunch before heading into beautiful Northland. An afternoon stop in Whangarei with a look at the local waterfalls and onwards to stunning Paihia.
Day 20. Paihia - Ahipara (367 km, 5-6 hours)
A unique trip to the very northernmost tip of New Zealand, Cape Reinga. Take a short walk to the lighthouse at the end of NZ and see the sea currents where the Tasman Sea meets the Pacific Ocean. Head back down to Ahipara for the night.
Day 21. Ahipara - Auckland (345 km, 5-6 hours)
Heading back south on the final riding day of the tour via Hokianga and a short ferry ride across the harbor. Stop at the impressive ‘Tane Mahuta’ the oldest living tree in New Zealand. Continuing on via Dargaville back to the final destination in Auckland city. Enjoy a special farewell dinner and drinks to celebrate a fantastic 3-week trip of a lifetime around spectacular New Zealand.
Day 22. Auckland, Departure
Breakfast at the hotel. Transfer to Auckland Airport (International Terminal) or stay and explore Auckland and the surrounding area.
End of Tour
Some of the very best motorcycling roads in the world are to be found in the South Island of New Zealand thanks to the Southern Alps spine that runs virtually down the middle. Roads are often empty, with fantastic sweeping bends and great visibility. In contrast, the North Island also offers great riding, with its volcanic plateaus, rolling hills, beach-lined peninsulas, and thermal highways.
- 21 Days & 5,700km+ motorcycle riding
- Motorcycle hire
- Riding Tour Guide
- Support Staff & Luggage Van
- Side Paniers or Top Box (if required)
- GPS Routes if required
- Mechanical breakdown assistance
- Technical and medical support
- Accommodation for 21 nights
- Daily breakfasts
- Welcome dinner on the first night
- Farewell dinner on the last night
- Transfers, Ferry Crossings, Road Tolls
- Full comprehensive motorcycle insurance
- Tour T-Shirt
- A minimum of 8 riders are required for the tour to proceed.
- The maximum number of participants is 12 riders.
- Riders are accompanied by a riding tour guide and a support/luggage van.
- The tour guides are locals with international participants, the tour language is English.
- Solo participants will be allocated a ½ twin shared room. The room will be shared with another participant of the same sex.
- Single room option is available for an additional cost, please see the pricing page.
TRAVEL, EXPLORE, DISCOVER…
On arrival in Christchurch on Day 1, transfers have been arranged from Christchurch Airport to the accommodation for the first night. A welcome dinner is included in the tour package on the first night where you will meet the staff, tour guides, and other tour participants.
Day 2 will start with a transfer to our depot where we will have our Pre-Tour Briefing, this includes:
- Welcome & Introduction – tour overview
- Tour check-in – final paperwork and any extra payments
- Bike handover – individually run over each bike setup and functions with each rider
- Tour Description – outlining the route and some of the sights and activities
- Riding in New Zealand brief – road rules, conditions, hazards, and what to expect
- Health & safety briefing – what to do in case of any emergencies.
After the Pre-Tour Briefing and morning tea, we will then gear up ready for the first day’s ride to the stunning turquoise waters of Lake Tekapo!
Start: Christchurch, South Island, New Zealand
Finish: Auckland, North Island, New Zealand
TOUR DEPARTURE TIME
Please arrive in Christchurch at least one day before the tour starts. We recommend two days before the tour start date to acclimate and avoid jet lag.
TOUR RETURN TIME
The tour will finish in the afternoon in Auckland. You will need to depart Auckland on the following day or afterward.
We recommend bringing your own gear for the best comfort. All your excess luggage will be transported in the support van which will accompany the group for the duration of the tour.
WHAT DO I NEED TO BRING
While we provide most things you need for the 3-week tour of New Zealand we can’t supply absolutely everything, particularly personal items. You will need to bring with you the following items:
- Personal Clothing – At the end of each day’s riding you will want to change out of your riding gear into something a little more comfortable. Please bring with you changes of clothes for 3 weeks of travel. New Zealand has very changeable weather so make sure you have packed some warmer clothing if it gets cool. Most of our accommodation selections will have a laundry service or laundry available for you to do your own clothes washing when required.
- Personal Toiletries – All accommodation will have towels and basic toiletries such as soap and shampoo.
- Personal Items – e.g. wallet, mobile phone, camera, GoPro, chargers
- Personal Medicines – Any prescription medicines, asthma inhalers, etc
- Motorcycle Riding Gear – It is best if you bring your own riding gear to ensure accurate fit and comfort.
We do have a selection of riding gear for hire at additional cost however for your own comfort we suggest you bring your own gear. We do not hire boots. We suggest bringing the following as a minimum:
- Armoured Jacket
- Armoured Pants
- Warm Touring Gloves
- Lightweight Gloves
- Suitable motorcycle riding boots
- Base layers, thermal pants & top
- Warm removable mid layers
- Waterproof outer shell
- Neck warmer/Buff
- Hydration backpack
We have a selection of new riding gear and accessories available at our online store and in our depot in Christchurch. If you would like to order any items we can have them ready for you at the start of your tour. Please contact us for more information.
A non-refundable deposit of USD$ 2,000 is required to secure your place on the tour and confirm your motorcycle selection from available models.
- Once the booking is placed we will send an invoice for deposit payment. Payment can be made via Direct Credit bank transfer or Credit Card.
- An invoice will be sent to you for the outstanding balance with full payment due 60 days before the tour departure. Payment can be made via Direct Credit bank transfer or Credit Card.
- If Big Bike Tours Part. Ltd. has not received your final payment within 60 days before the start of the tour, the deposit will be forfeited and the booking canceled.
- A Bond of USD$2,000.00 is required per motorcycle hire at the commencement of the tour. (See Insurance terms and conditions below.)
- All prices shown are in United States Dollars ($USD)
- All prices include New Zealand Government Goods and Services Tax (GST) of 15%
If canceled 60 days before the start of the tour we will refund you 100% of the paid tour cost, less the non-refundable deposit.
- If canceled within 60 days of the start date 100% of the tour cost will be forfeited.
- If you are a no-show at the scheduled start time of the tour for any reason, 100% of the tour cost will be forfeited.
- We advise taking out your own personal travel insurance for any unforeseen circumstances that would prevent you from attending the tour.
- Full comprehensive motorcycle insurance is included in the tour fee for all motorcycle hires.
SECURITY DEPOSIT (BOND)
- At the commencement of the tour, a bond of USD$2,000.00 is required to be held for each motorcycle rental in the event of any damage or loss to either the motorcycle, any accessories, or third-party property. This sum is fully refundable if the motorcycle and any accessories are returned at the conclusion of the tour without any damage, loss, or expense. Any damage will be deducted from the insurance bond with the balance being refunded. The hirer’s maximum liability is limited to the full insurance bond plus any cost of recovery of the motorcycle. (All damages paid by credit card will incur a 2.9% credit card surcharge.)
- The bond must be taken in the form of a pre-authorization on your credit card at the commencement of the tour and is held for the duration of your hire. Please ensure sufficient funds are available on your Credit Card for the bond pre-authorization hold at the commencement of your tour. Note: Pre-authorization holds can only be charged to a Credit Card. Debit Cards are not valid.
- After the bond hold pre-authorization is canceled it may take up to 3-5 working days for the funds to be available again on your Credit Card depending on your bank.
- No transaction fees apply to Pre-Authorisation credit holds. If damage is deducted from the bond, standard credit card fees will apply to the charged portion.
- Minimum age 25 years old
- Full motorcycle licence valid for riding in New Zealand, or an international driver’s permit.
- If your drivers licence is not printed in English then an international driver’s permit is required.
- Experience – This tour is not suitable for beginner riders.
MOTORCYCLE CHOICE & AVAILABILITY
- Kiwi Motorcycle Rentals provides the motorcycles for the tour.
- There are limited numbers of each make and model motorcycle available for each tour.
- Motorcycles are available on a first-come first served basis and your first-choice motorcycle may not be available for the tour at the time of booking.
- Models available are shown at the time of booking on the website booking system in the motorcycle selection dropdown menu.
RIDER FITNESS, HEALTH & SAFETY
All tour participants enter into a tour contract with Big Bike Tours and in doing so state that they are in suitable physical and mental condition and that they are capable of participating in the tour without risk to themselves or others.
Big Bike Tours participants:
- are responsible for riding at their own pace and level of experience at all times during the tour, and
- should at no time exceed any of the local traffic laws and speed limits or their riding experience level, and
- are prohibited from exceeding laws in relation to the consumption of alcoholic beverages while operating any vehicle/ motorcycle during a tour, or the taking of ANY drugs that may impair judgment while riding.
- Big Bike Tours reserves the right to cancel a participant tour and motorcycle rental agreement at once by giving either verbal or written notice for any infraction of the above, or if we reasonably believe that your driving is negligent, careless, or will likely cause danger to themselves or anyone else.
Big Bike Tours reserves the right to accept or deny anybody from participating in any Big Bike Tours tour. Big Bike Tours does not and will not discriminate against any sex, race, or religion.
Big Bike Tours owners, operators, or tour guides may for any reason deny a participant(s) continuance of the tour if they feel that the participant(s) is a danger or disruption to himself or herself, the tour group, or the general public. Any participant(s) denied continuance of the tour is responsible for his or her own accommodation, meals, airport shuttle services, or any other costs incurred as a result of their denial. No refunds will be issued to any participant(s) who are denied continuance of a Big Bike Tours tour.
New Zealand has various rules and mandates in place in response to the Covid-19 pandemic. These rules and mandates change with the current COVID response level in New Zealand. The official response rules can be found on the NZ Government Covid website https://covid19.govt.nz/
Big Bike Tours reserves the right to cancel any scheduled tour at any time due to lack of participation, severe weather, natural disaster, world unrest, pandemic, or any other given reason whatsoever.
If any tour is canceled, Big Bike Tours will:
- immediately notify tour participants of any such occurrence, and
- offer the possibility of rescheduling another tour on another date, or will refund the tour cost less any deposits paid to cover pre-booked accommodation, activities admin fees, etc. which will constitute a full settlement. All deposits required at the time of booking are non-refundable,
- not be liable for any additional cost or losses incurred by the participant due to a cancellation of any tour.
This may include, but not be limited to:
- personal airline tickets,
- other accommodation reservations,
- any other pre-planned trips/travel and/or associated expenses.
EXTRA FEES & CHARGES
- All motorcycle fuel for the duration of the hire is at the tour participants’ expense.
- At the end of the tour, the motorcycle must be returned with a full tank of fuel. Failure to return the motorcycle with a full tank of fuel at the completion of hire will incur an extra charge for the refilling of the motorcycle fuel tank plus a $25.00 administration fee.
- Traffic and/or parking violation fines that come in after the hire has ended will also be charged to your nominated card.
Big Bike Tours values our customers and respects their privacy. We recognize the trust you place in us through your dealings with us. We take all reasonable steps to maintain that trust. Under the law, your rights to privacy are also protected. Privacy laws place requirements on us to treat certain information collected as confidential, to store information securely, and to allow you access to check and correct your information. We comply with the Privacy Act 2020.
All participants will be required to read and sign a Vehicle Rental Agreement to participate in the tour. This will be given to tour participants at tour check-in for signing. You can download a copy of the Vehicle Rental Agreement at https://www.kiwimotorcyclerentals.com/rental-agreement
5 TIPS FOR MOTORCYCLE TOURING IN NEW ZEALAND
- Allow time to get over jetlag, you may have just crossed 10 time zones in just over 24 hours. Not many of us get the chance to go to New Zealand more than once in our lives, so don’t rush it.
- Stopover en route, how many times in your life do you get to visit Asia? Depending on who you fly with, why not use this opportunity to visit places like Singapore, Bangkok, Dubai, Hong Kong, Sydney, Los Angeles, Hawaii, or the Cook Islands? Ask your flight agent.
- Speed cameras, the myths are true! They are hidden in bizarre places. And they are NOT painted in bright garish colors, so you can spot them a mile off. You have been warned.
- ‘Metal’ roads are gravel, not tarmac. Many side roads in New Zealand will show a sign stating metal road. We do not encourage riding on metal or un-made roads – in New Zealand, you can get up close to unsurpassed scenery of imaginable beauty without leaving the tarmac.
- The sun is deceptively strong, so wear plenty of sun cream to prevent yourself from getting burnt, especially your face.
The famous New Zealand motorcycle touring roads make for terrific riding, in some districts, it looks like the designer who created the roads has a phobia of straight lines! Due to a small population, the roads are empty and the surfaces on the routes we choose are fantastic. We avoid the main truck routes and stick to the bendy inland highways, we take you to the best biking roads this country can offer, and some that many other companies don’t know or have time for.
Motorcycle riding in New Zealand is generally relaxed, so you can take in the scenery and see this wonderful country at a comfortable pace, it’s certainly the most important thing to us in the world that everyone enjoys the ride. This is why we use the best bikes, maintain them to exacting standards, and equip them with the best touring tires to provide the best grip possible, we never cut costs and are proud of our high-quality service.
Some routes are challenging, so you will need some degree of experience with riding the size of the motorcycle you have chosen for your trip.
New Zealand’s North Island is subtropical and the South Island is temperate, to get the most enjoyment out of the weather December through to March is the best time to visit. June, July, and August are the coldest months, and the mountainous areas often close due to snow.
During our summer our temperature ranges between 20 – 40 Celsius Degree (68F – 104F)
During winter it can be anything between 0 – 20 Celsius Degree (32F – 68F)
The summer sun can be fierce so sunscreen is highly recommended, also wear layers and be prepared to ride in both hot and colder weather.
BASIC ROAD RULES
It is important to view the road rules before you ride, below are some brief tips, we’ll always give you a safety briefing before you depart, but for the official New Zealand road code visit the NZ Transport Agency website.
- Speed Limits: 100 km/h max on the open road and 50 km/h in built-up areas, all speed signs are well signposted.
- Giving Way: In general, give way to the right. When at a STOP sign you must stop completely and give way to all traffic until it is clear to proceed.
- Traffic not turning at cross junctions (going straight) have the right of way over turning traffic.
- Signs at single-lane bridges advise who has the right of way, to slow down, and be prepared to stop.
- Corner Speed: There are speed recommendation signs on most bends in New Zealand and can be used as a rough guide to judge your speed into corners.
- Driving Licence: You must hold a full motorcycle license or be able to legally ride the requested size motorcycle in your country of residence, proof will be required in the form of your physical driver’s license. Any overseas licenses will need to be translated before arriving (check with your travel agent).
- Safety: When riding in New Zealand you are required to wear a helmet by law, we can provide all your motorcycle gear, but for comfort purposes, you can bring your own. Tinted visors are okay during the daytime but bring your clear with you.
- Alcohol: Riding/Driving in New Zealand while intoxicated is a very serious offense and random breath testing happens very often all over the country, even in rural areas. The legal limit is 80 milligrams of alcohol for every 100mls of blood, in other words, you could go over the limit with two pints of normal-strength beer or a large glass of wine. If you have a heavy night drinking you may still be over the limit first thing in the morning so delay your riding till later, if you are caught drinking you automatically lose your license, and the bike, and will incur a large fine or be imprisoned until your court hearing. i.e. Vacation Over.
- Overtaking: You may not cross a solid yellow line to overtake, they are there to warn of hidden dangers so abide by this rigidly. Broken white lines are fine and you should stay within the speed limit. You are not allowed to cross the center line if you are not overtaking and must keep left when driving normally.
- Parking: Consider your parking carefully, for your convenience remember to park the back wheel down to the curb, this will make it easier to ride away, it is also illegal to park on the opposite side of the road facing traffic.
- Beware of Kea Parrots. If you are near the mountains keep an eye out for Kea parrots as they will happily peck a hole in your seat within seconds (we’re not joking), and their sharp talons will instantly damage your seat if they land on it. We provide kea parrot insurance options to reduce damage costs.
- New Zealand is generally a very safe place, but make sure your motorbike is tucked away at night or even kept under cover if at all possible. Lastly, be aware of Kiwi drivers generally, they are used to driving in a quiet country on very empty roads and many do not have the same experience with motorcycles as in other busier countries.
- Roadworks: Roadworks are seldom motorcycle-friendly in NZ. Whilst some are easy to navigate, others can be a little daunting. Slow and steady.
Big Bike Tours reserves the right to alter or amend any details, pricing, routes, and inclusions which may be amended at any time and without notice.
Tour Highlights: Christchurch, the ‘Garden City’; Lake Tekapo; Aoraki Mount Cook; Pacific Ocean; Otago Peninsula; Catlins Coastline; Classic Motorcycle Mecca; Burt Munro’s legendary ‘World’s Fastest Indian’; Fiordland National Park; Magical Milford Sound; Devil’s Staircase; Lake Wakatipu; The Remarkables; Queenstown, the ‘Adventure Capital of the World’; Mount Aspiring National Park; Haast Pass; Tasman Sea; Franz Josef Glacier; Tree Top Walk & Café; Hokitika; Punakaiki Rocks; Buller River; Reefton; Southern Alps; Lewis Pass; Hanmer Springs; Seaward Kaikoura Ranges; Kaikoura; whale-watching; Marlborough wine region; Marlborough Sounds; Wellington, New Zealand’s capital city; Te Papa; Rimutaka hills; Pukaha Mount Bruce National Wildlife Centre; Tongariro National Park; Forgotten World Highway; a tour of the Hobbiton set in “Middle Earth”; Rotorua; Mitai Village; Coromandel Peninsula; Hot Water Beach; Whitianga; Auckland, the ‘City of Sails’
Day 1. Christchurch, Arrival
Day 2. Christchurch – Lake Tekapo (270 km)
Day 3. Lake Tekapo – Dunedin (254 km)
Day 4. Dunedin – Invercargill (244 km)
Day 5. Invercargill – Fiordland National Park (191 km)
Day 6. Magical Milford Sound (240 km)
Day 7. Te Anau – Queenstown (213 km).
Day 8. Queenstown – Franz Josef Glacier Village (351 km)
Day 9. Franz Josef Glacier Village – Westport (273 km)
Day 10. Westport – Hammer Springs Village (216 km)
Day 11. Hammer Springs Village – Kaikoura – Picton (337 km)
Day 12. Rest Day: Picton Ferry & Wellington City
Day 13. Wellington – Stratford (384 km)
Day 14. Stratford – Taupo (via the Forgotten World Highway) (292 km)
Day 15. Taupo – Gisborn (359 km)
Day 16. Gisborn – Rotorua (274 km)
Day 17. Rest Day in Rotorua
Day 18. Rotorua – Thames (350 km)
Day 19. Thames – Phaihia (339 km)
Day 20. Phaihia – Ahipara (367 km)
Day 21. Phaihia – Auckland (345 km)
Day 22. Auckland, Departure
2024 Tour Starts
| 04. March – 23. March |
| 25. March – 14. April |