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Suggested cycle trail itineraries

Day-by-day guides to start your planning for the Rimutaka Cycle Trail.

One day trail options

One day trail

One day option

Train from Wellington to Petone. Hutt River trail and Rimutaka rail trail sections as per 2-day itinerary. Continue to Featherston. Accommodation in Featherston or return to Wellington by train, via Rimutaka Tunnel, which replaced the former rail route just cycled.

One day half trail – Wairarapa start

Bike the trail 2

Train from Wellington to Featherston. Join trail at Cross Creek Rd intersection.

  • Option 1: Traverse rail trail west to Maymorn. Lunch in Silverstream or Harcourt Park. Continue south via Hutt River Trail to Petone Wharf. Petone accommodation or train to Wellington via Petone Station.
  • Option 2: From Cross Creek intersection continue south to Ocean Beach and Turakirae. As above, shuttle bus pickup from Orongorongo River carpark to Wellington or Wairarapa accommodation.

One day part trail

Rimutaka cycle one day part trail

Train from Wellington to Maymorn. Ride rail trail section to Cross Creek. North to Featherston. Train to Wellington.

Or reverse: Train from Wellington to Featherston. Ride to trail at Cross Creek and across to Maymorn. Train to Wellington.

Tunnel Gully Rimutaka Rail Trail

Activities and attractions

The township of Featherston is just nine kilometres north of the trail at the Cross Creek/Western Lake Rd intersection. This location and a direct rail link to Wellington make it an ideal place to visit as the start or end-point of a half-trail ride, or as a stopover on a multi-day ride.

Featherston has a historic connection to the trail, as it was the first stop after the railway crossed the Rimutakas, along the current route of the trail. It remains the first stop on the main trunk line after the Rimutakas, trains now passing under the mountain via the Rimutaka Tunnel, opened in 1955 and is the longest passenger train tunnel in New Zealand.

The Fell Locomotive Museum houses H199, the only locomotive of its type in the world

Make sure to visit the Fell Engine Museum in Featherston, to get a full insight to the historical and engineering significance of the Rimutaka Rail Trail part of the Rimutaka Cycle Trail.  The Fell Locomotive Museum houses H199, the only locomotive of its type in the world and presents a unique aspect of New Zealand's railway heritage.  The Fell locomotives climbed gradients as steep as 1 in 13 (7.7%) on the 4.8km railway between the settlements of Cross Creek, near Featherston, and Summit at the top of the Rimutaka Ranges, in the Wairarapa.

Featherston has camping, B&B and motel accommodation options. Shuttle buses are available for trips to the nearby village of Martinborough and surrounding Wairarapa vineyards, as well as picturesque Greytown and its renowned boutique shopping.

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