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A stunning wee day ride of approx. 85K (55Ml) one way or 170Ks return ride, depending on where you start & finish. It has a great mix of short straights & windies. This ride takes you over & through 2 extinct volcanic cones, Lyttleton & Akaroa, on Canterbury's Bank's Peninsula.
Akaroa is what remains of a French whaling settlement, following their attempt to colonise New Zealand back in the late 1700 - early 1800's. The story goes that a very cunning Maori gentleman sold the rights to Akaroa to 50 or so people, getting paid by each of them. It has a rich history of Maori settlement, wars & whaling. Now a great destination for a short or long day ride.
It is a very lovely (quant) wee town with a French flavour, where you can buy stunning Fish & Chips, or a Latte & muffin for the Java brigade. For those over-nighting it has great accommodation & restuarants, scenic boat cruises and eclectic shops for the ladies all in a lovely location.
Hilltop Hotel (B), overlooking Akaroa & the harbour is a great place for a comfort stop, scenic view, local beers & food.
The horrible thing is after arriving in Akaroa, having finished your Fish & Chips, Latte what ever, you have to ride back to Christchurch the way you came, or take the Summit Road scenic route (maybe drop down to one of the beach settlements on the Peninsula for a nosey, Okains Bay Settlers Museum) on your way back to The Hill-top & Christchurch.
Ride often, ride free