For cycling enthusiasts, New Zealand is a top-notch destination. The country is famous for its landscapes and few activities get you up close and personal like hitting the road by bike. More, New Zealand is one of the safest and most carefree places to cycle with friendly locals, relatively little traffic (particularly on the South Island), and a healthy infrastructure of bike shops, rentals, and guides.
For comparison, the North Island has a population of 3.3 million people while the South Island has only 1 million people and is almost 40,000 km² bigger. Both have incredibly long stretches of coastline but the South Island has the Southern Alps Mountain Range and a wider variety of mountain roads. On the whole, the North Island has its fair share of good cycling but the South Island is the cream of the crop.
More on Cycling in New Zealand
Seasons/When to Go
The best time for cycling in New Zealand is October through April (the warmest months in the southern hemisphere). The majority of the country has a temperate climate and temperatures decrease from north to south. Wind and rain are important considerations when cycling and New Zealand does not have a shortage of either. Come prepared for the elements. The mountainous regions of the South Island get cold and snowy in the winter and cycling becomes difficult. For those looking to cycle outside of the summer months, the North Island is best including the Coromandel Peninsula and the Far North.