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11 places to fuel your ride

How about a fresh coffee and toastie before hitting the trails? Or some fresh baked goodies to take with you for an epic packed lunch? Maybe some fish and chips or a gelato to enjoy by the lakeside after a few hours of riding? Taupo has so many great eateries that are easy to access before, during and after your ride.

Here are 11 of our top picks to fuel your ride!

1. Baked with Love

Rated #1 on TripAdvisor for desserts in Taupo, Baked With Love should be your go-to if you’re after a sweet treat! Their Cakery serves up fresh, decadent sweets that are famous among locals. Not only this, their epic fresh baked sandwiches and mouse traps are a great option to take with you for your day on the bike. Gluten free, keto, dairy free and vegan options are readily available.

2. Luna’s Gelateria

Been riding for a couple hours in the beaming morning sun, and you need a little something to cool you down? Head to Luna’s Gelateria, the parlour to grab a gelato or sorbet in the town centre. Relatively new to Taupo, Luna’s has hit the ground running, becoming a hot spot for a cool treat, currently pleasing the masses with 20+ flavours (including eight Dairy Free). Not into cones? Then get your gelato/sorbet made into an indulgent thick shake or milkshake!

3. Café Baku

Rated #1 on TripAdvisor for Coffee and Tea, Café Baku are known best by locals for their exquisite cabinet selection and friendly staff. Open till late afternoon, pop in for an Allpress coffee and tuck in to one of their freshly baked muffins or slices over some banter with friends and family as you enjoy the lake views.

4. Two Mile Bay Sailing Club

This unique restaurant and bar lets you sit on the water while you enjoy a local craft beer and woodfire pizza. The Two Mile Bay Sailing Club is located perfectly at the midpoint of the Great Lake Pathway, making it an ideal stop on your bike journey. Park up, grab an ice cold beverage and a table on the sand to soak in the scenery. If you feel like taking a dip in the crisp water, the Sailing Club offers hire of sail boats, stand up paddle boards and kayaks; they even have a floating trampoline!

5. The Fish Box

About one minute off the Great Lake Pathway is the bright green building in Rainbow Point, serving classic ‘fish n chips in true Kiwi style. Freshly sourced ingredients make up The Fish Box menu, that ranges from trevally, paua fritters and crumbed brie, to burgers and battered Mars Bars! Grab your Fish Box and head back down to the lake for a sunset dinner. 

6. Kefi at the Hub

Easily spotted from Wairakei Drive with the geometric patterned sikorsky helicopter outside, Kefi at the Hub is perfectly situated on the Huka Falls to Aratiatia Dam Trail, across the road from Craters Mountain Bike Park and directly adjacent to FourB Bire Hire & Tours. Their gravy-licous poutine is a rider favourite and they are praised for their large Keto selection.

7. Kinloch General Store

Regarded highly amongst locals for their ciabatta burgers, woodfire pizzas and coned ice cream, the Kinloch General Store is the go-to for a delicious meal by the waterside. In summer people flock to pick up a pizza baked in the onsite woodfire oven, from the classics like Margarita and Hawaiian, to the more exotic Chicken & Cranberry and Salmon & Cream Cheese. Cool off during or after your ride with a waffle cone of ice cream (triple scoop condoned!) and enjoy it sitting on Kinloch beach, just a few steps from the Store.

8. The Tipsy Trout, Kinloch

A coffee from locally roasted beans or a hand-picked New Zealand wine is waiting for you on the shores of Kinloch. If you are riding the W2K or K2K sections of the Great Lake Trails, then pop into the Tipsy Trout for a quick fuel up. Be sure to try their signature Big Breakfast, Garlic Prawn Fettucine or Whittaker's Chocolate and Peanut Filo. What's more, the Tipsy also doubles as a bike hire service for the Kinloch area! If you are after a bike and gear, they are more than happy to help.

9. Creel Tackle House & Café, Turangi

A must visit if you are riding in Turangi, Creel Café offers a unique setting as you walk through the connected fishing tackle store to get to the café cosily tucked behind. If you're heading to the Tongariro River Trail, the Creel Café should be on your pre-ride-coffee list! Their Brioche selection is the stuff of local legend, the Hangover Pie is the ultimate crowd pleaser, and the coffee is consistently perfect. The atmosphere is charming, and you’ll often see anglers in full gear stopping by for their weekly tackle and coffee pick up.

10. The Dam Café, Whakamaru

Good food made daily the way grandma used to” is the slogan for this hidden gem on State Highway 32. The Dam Café is a hungry bikers saviour! It is the only daytime eatery in Whakamaru, a quaint town you can visit while riding the Waikato River Trails. With plenty of space to park the bike, reenergise with a toastie, big breakfast or milkshake.

11. Bus Stop Café, Mangakino

Nestled on the edge of Lake Mangakino, you’ll find a large, purple 1972 Bedford bus that has been lovingly converted into a bustling café. Raving reviews about the coffee, handmade pizza and it’s ‘Kiwi as’ atmosphere has put this unique café on the map for many biking the Waikato River Trails.

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