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Highlights include some of the best viewing points of the aquamarine waters of the Waikato River, fun winding singletrack, Huka Falls, stunning native bush sections, river access at various points, Aratiatia Dam, geothermal streams, native punga tree groves, and a stand of giant Redwood trees.
There are various access points for these two-way shared usage trails along the Waikato River. Most sections of the trail are grade 1-2 easy, whilst some parts are grade 3 intermediate.
If you are riding from town you can either start at the Control Gates bridge or at Spa Park. There are carparks at both entrances.
The River Side Trail begins at Control Gates bridge. This two-way walking and cycling path follows the Waikato River past Cherry Island and through Riverside Reserve, before climbing up behind Taupō Bungy & Cliffhanger and into Spa Thermal Park. Find out more about River Side Trail.
|Bike time / walk time||15 mins/ 1 hour|
|Bike grade||3 / intermediate|
|Walk physical rating||Easy|
|Transport, bike hire & guides||Yes. Click here for more information.|
The Rotary Ride track begins at Spa Thermal Park. You can leave your car here for your return, or book a shuttle. The track is a grade 3 trail, making it suitable for intermediate riders to enjoy.
Allow a leisurely 2-3 hours to complete the 5.5km trail from Spa Park to Huka Falls and back (11km return), or 5-6 hours if you choose to continue on to the Aratiatia Dam, which is another 7km along the river. Find out more about the Rotary Ride.
|Distance||5.5km (or 19.5km)|
|Direction||Return via the same track|
|Transport & guides||Yes. Click here for information.|
|Dog access||Yes, dogs allowed|
From Huka Falls you can ride to the Aratiatia Dam and return via the same track, or loop back on the other side of the river via Aratiatia Loop track, Wairakei Resort Track, Wairakei Tourist Track and Café Track. The ride is around 14km return or 7km one-way.
If returning via the Aratiatia Loop track there are a number of points along the way to access Craters Mountain Bike Park if you are feeling like a longer ride.
You can return all the way back to Taupō town from Huka Falls via the Redwoods Trail. Find out more about the Huka Falls to Aratiatia Dam Loop.
|Time||1 - 3 hours|
|Transport, bike hire & guides||Yes. Click here for more information|