Make a Payment

Tekapo Canal Trail

Bike Alongside Soaring Landscapes & Turquoise Waters!

Tuatara Tours will take you from Christchurch (which has an international airport) right into the heart of the South Island of New Zealand for The Tekapo Canal Trail.

You will soak up the magical views and discover the history of the Mackenzie Country in four leisurely paced days of pedalling.

Join us for an unforgettable guided bike tour alongside the picturesque glacial lakes and canals, under the watchful eye of the mighty Mount Cook (New Zealand’s highest mountain).




See Our Hire Bikes



Tour Type

Cycling Tour


4 days / 3 nights




Book now for Next Season!

Do you have a date in mind?

We can build a tour especially for your group, please enquire for dates available.

Tour Itinerary

Price: NZ$1,895

Day 1

Christchurch to Tekapo

2 to 3 hours approximately

You depart from Christchurch and enjoy a scenic and informative drive through to Lake Tekapo, the centre of the South Island. At Tekapo the astounding panoramic views from the top of Mt John Observatory will take your breath away! It is reputedly an area that enjoys the world’s clearest night sky.

As your cycle experience unfolds you are immersed in the incredibly scenic landscape of turquoise coloured glacial lakes and tussock-clad hills, with the stunning backdrop of snow-capped mountains.

You pedal past the world famous Church of the Good Shepherd (which offers awe-inspiring views of Lake Tekapo and the Southern Alps through its altar window). You then ride alongside Lake Tekapo, taking in the views of the magnificent lake and mountains, and in early summer hectares of Russell Lupins in attractive shades of pinks and purples.

This evening you relax at a resort hotel that has unbelievable panoramic views across the turquoise waters of the lake. Optional extra’s include a soak in the hot pools close by, or an evening excursion to the Mt John observatory.

Day 2

Lake Tekapo to Twizel

4 hours approximately

After breakfast, you cycle along the emerald blue canals towards Lake Pukaki,  Travel around the end of Lake Pukaki and (depending on how long you want to cycle) up to the Mt Cook Village at the base of Mount Cook itself. You then pass Irishman Creek, an area also well known as the farm station where the world’s first jet boat was built and tested.

While travelling up the rambling road towards Mount Cook you can enjoy stops at Peter’s Lookout, Boundary Stream and Glentanner. The Mount Cook National Park carries World Heritage status and contains almost all of New Zealand’s major mountain peaks – stretching approximately 70km along the Southern Alps.

On your arrival at Mt Cook there will be time for a look around the Village before heading off by coach to your lodge for the evening.

The evening is spent in a quality lodge, right in the heart of the Mackenzie Country.

Day 3

Twizel to Ohau

4 hours approximately

You wake up with a wonderful view of the snow capped mountains, and after breakfast you will cycle along the canal road to Lake Ruataniwha.

You join the Twizel River Trail between Twizel and Lake Benmore. This trail runs for 12km, parallel to the Twizel River, and offers wonderful views of the Mackenzie Basin. The trail ends overlooking the beautiful Lake Benmore, which is New Zealand’s largest man-made lake – famous for its fishing.

Your next experience is to travel a short distance to the start of the Lake Ohau road. From there you will enjoy a relaxed cycle along gradually sloping downhill roads to the magnificent Lake Ohau. A leisurely pedal along the south side of the lake also offers you another opportunity to experience the wonderful views of the snow-capped mountains in the background.

You overnight at the beautiful Lake Ohau Lodge, which provides stunning panoramic views of the lake, mountains and surrounding countryside.

Day 4

Ohau to Christchurch

3 hours approximately

On the final day, you enjoy a ride to the head of Lake Ohau and into the Ruataniwha Conservation Park. This park consists of over 36,800 hectares of rugged mountain landscapes, encompassing beech (Tawhai) forest, sparkling clear rivers, and the Ohau and Ben Ohau ranges.

Your final group lunch is alongside the shoreline of the lake where you celebrate the conclusion of your four day biking experience – before departing by coach back to Christchurch.

What's included?


  • Day 1: Hotel villas, each with private bedrooms, shared bathroom, and open plan lounge area with views of Lake Tekapo.
  • Day 2: Comfortable Country Hotel, large private rooms with ensuite bathrooms and tea/ coffee making facilities.
  • Day 3: Lakeside Alpine Lodge. Private rooms with queen and single bed, ensuite bathrooms.

Accommodation is double or twin share. If single room accommodation is requested, an additional fee per person is payable to cover this requirement for the duration of your tour.

Bike Hire

We have bikes for hire and recommend you use them as they are tried and true in the areas we operate.

All of our bikes are fully maintained and serviced before they leave. Included in the cost of your cycle hire is a cycle helmet and safety vest.

You may use your own bike, but please ensure it is well maintained and fully serviced before your tour starts.



You will enjoy great local cuisine; continental breakfasts and hearty packed lunches during the day,  and either restaurant meals or wholesome home-cooked fare prepared by your host/hostess in the evenings. If you have any dietary issues or food allergies, we are happy to cater for these, please advise the office of details when you make your booking. Alcohol is not included in the tour cost, but is available for purchase most nights.



Tuatara Tours transports all your luggage for the duration of the tour.


Tour Kit Bag – Exclusive to Tuatara Tours

To ensure you get the very best out of your journey with the least of fuss, we provide you with a kit bag full of useful goodies.

This will be given to you at the start of your tour.


An experienced guide

Our guides are very experienced, friendly walkers and bikers who love to share their knowledge of New Zealand’s flora and fauna and local history. They all hold current first aid certificates, passenger driving licences and are the very best people to ensure your experience will be one to remember.


All transport


Access and Concession fees paid to the Department of Conservation


NZ Goods and Service Tax (GST)


Safety and Risk Management

To ensure maximum safety for all, our guides are certified first aiders and fully qualified drivers. Tuatara Tours operate under a Safety and Risk Management Plan which is regularly audited and approved by a qualified and independent auditor.

Make an Enquiry

  • Your details

  • Tour details

  • If you require a date that is not displayed, please enter it into the Questions / comments box below
  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.