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EXPLORING

Central Otago Best Motorbuys takes a look at what makes Central Otago one of New Zealand’s top tourist destinations.

Cycle Tours

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To cycle Central Otago is on many people’s bucket lists. Take a journey through breath-taking landscapes and take the time to appreciate the everchanging mountainous, dry, rocky landscapes, and, spectacular river gorges. Many tour companies can tailor a package to your personal wants and needs. The Otago Central Rail Trail is the original cycle tour, and another one that takes our fancy is the Luxury Cycle Tours – their premium package includes a half-day wine tour with lunch at a Central Otago vineyard.

tago is New Zealand’s most inland region, made up of rolling landscapes, rugged mountains, intercut rivers and deep gorges. Founded on the spirit of southern farmers and gold miners, the area is the gateway to many small towns, a destination for thrillseekers and an oasis of exceptional wineries. With so much on offer we’ve narrowed down our top summer, mustdo activities.

4WD Safaris If cycling is not your thing, you can still take a trail around the rugged countryside in a 4WD. There are many tours on offer, but we love the Maniototo 4WD Safaris, situated in Ranfurly, as each tour is taken in an ultra-cool Land Rover Defender. It can take a few hours, up to all day.

Trout Fishing The original gold-mining rivers now provide excellent trout fishing sites. The Taieri river and Maniototo dams, some of which run through private land, can be fished from October through to April. There is a selection of companies that offer guides and equipment hire to ensure you get a great day’s fishing and don’t accidentally wander onto private land without permission.

Wine Tours

Take in the History Whenever visiting a new location, it’s important to take the time to understand the history of the region. For Central Otago, the gold-mining era is deep in its history. To experience this side of Central Otago, we’d recommend the following locations: Goldfields Mining Centre in Cromwell, Alexandra’s Central Stories Museum & Art Gallery, Clyde Historical Museum and Maniototo Early Settlers Museum (Ranfurly). For more historical places to visit, have a look at centralotagonz.com

With an extensive range of wineries in the region, you could simply base your trip around them and still not get through the list. There is the option to book into one of the many tours available and get transported to the winery either by 4WD, helicopter or bike. Or simply take your own transport and enjoy a long lunch and taste some fabulous wine.

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Best Motorbuys 22-12-17  

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