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New Plymouth residents invited to bike Coastal Cruise

29 July 2011

New Plymouth residents invited to bike Coastal Cruise

New Plymouth residents are being invited to join a 10km “Coastal Cruise” bike ride next month to mark the opening of New Zealand’s first cycle touring routes, under Nga Haerenga, The New Zealand Cycle Trail (NZCT).

The cycle touring routes will be the first in a series of new cycle rides, comprising of largely on-road cycle routes around New Zealand.

The first three cycle touring routes to be opened will be from Taumarunui to New Plymouth (including part of the Forgotten World Highway), from Taumarunui to Whakahoro (linking to The Ruapehu-Whanganui Trails) and from Taumarunui to Ongarue (linking to The Pureora Timber Trail).

“A team of cyclists from the NZCT project will be riding 180km from Taumarunui to New Plymouth along the route of the longest new cycle touring route and we’re inviting the people of New Plymouth to join us on the “Coastal Cruise” and cycle the final 10km of our journey with us,” NZCT Senior Project Advisor Jude Ellis says.

“As one of New Zealand’s Model Walking and Cycling Communities, it’s great that New Plymouth has been selected to be part of one of New Zealand’s first cycle touring routes.

“These new cycle routes will encourage cyclists and cycle tourists to use safer and more enjoyable cycling routes and steer them away from busy state highways and arterial routes.

“The coastal ride along the New Plymouth waterfront is one of the most beautiful and scenic coastal rides in New Zealand and will be a strong draw card for bringing cycle tourists into the region,” Ms Ellis says.

New Plymouth District Mayor Harry Duynhoven says the 180km route through the Forgotten World Highway, via Purangi, Tarata and the Mangati and Coastal walkways to Puke Ariki should be a wonderful ride for locals and cycle tourists alike.

“The new route is expected to have positive impact for Taranaki’s tourism, cycling and general businesses, as well as helping to raise the region’s profile as a destination for cycling. The well-signposted multi-day cycle touring experience will lead riders through some of Taranaki’s most spectacular scenery,” Mr Duynhoven says.

Jenny Chetwynd, NZ Transport Agency (NZTA) Regional Director Central says the NZTA is proud to be a partner of NZCT and to have helped develop these cycle touring routes.
“We’re very excited about the launch of these first three routes. The cycle touring routes mean cyclists can now travel safely and through our beautiful kiwi back country,” Ms Chetwynd says.

“New Plymouth is also one of New Zealand’s first walking and cycling Model Communities, receiving $4.5m in funding over two years from the NZTA. We are working with the District Council to create an environment where walking and cycling are easy transport choices.”

The Coastal Cruise will be held on Sunday 21 August. It will start at the beginning of the Mangati Walkway at De Havilland Drive at 10.30am, pass along the scenic Coastal Walkway and finish Puke Ariki in the New Plymouth CBD.
The Coastal Cruise will be suitable for all levels of cycling ability. Entry to the bike ride will be free-of-charge and riders will be encouraged to bring along a picnic to enjoy at the Puke Arki Landing once they have completed the ride. Spot prizes and complimentary water bottles will also be provided along the trail route.

Community events will also be held in Taumarunui and Whangamomona on Saturday 20 August, the day before the “Coastal Cruise” to celebrate the opening of the new rides.


© Scoop Media

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