Cycling to Blenheim wineries on the South Island of New Zealand is an ideal way to spend the day. Wine tasting is one of our favorite vacation activities and pedaling among the vines and rolling hills near Blenheim just added to the charm. Don't worry if you're not incredibly fit. The distances between vineyards is not too great and the roads are mostly flat. Read on to learn more about our experience renting bicycles to explore the Marlborough New Zealand wine region.
Blenheim Wineries with Bike 2 Wine Cycle HireBike 2 Wine cycle hire offers well-maintained and comfortable bicycles for a self-guided tour of Blenheim wineries. For $40 NZD per person, Bike 2 Wine will pick you up at your accommodation in Blenheim and get you fitted out for the day at their offices in Renwick. We were offered a map and some tips on which of Marlborough's wineries to try and then were on our way.
Renwick New Zealand's Road Side Spectators
Bike 2 Wine is located in a residential area in Renwick New Zealand. En route to our first Blenheim winery, we passed some cute roadside spectators. I couldn't help but stop and take a picture as this goat curiously looked on.
The Stunning Scenery of Marlborough New Zealand
The scenery in New Zealand is so spectacular that there was a risk of me stopping every 5 minutes to take a photo and never tasting a drop of wine. We got super-lucky with the weather on our visit to Blenheim's wineries in late March, with blue skies and warmth joining us on our ride.
Blenheim Wine Tasting at Forrest Wines
We were ushered to an outdoor table shaded by a large umbrella and were treated to a tasting of seven wines (I recall that we paid about $7 NZD for the tasting). Forrest wines is run by a Ph.D. and an M.D. The Doctors' range of wines features bold and innovative flavor profiles. What a great way to start the day: sipping wines at a Blenheim winery at 11 am with the sun shining down on us.
Blenheim Wine Tasting at Wairau River Wines
Blenheim Winery Lunch at Allan Scott Family Winemakers
Blenheim Wine Tasting at Bladen Wines
We decided to push ourselves and stop at one final Blenheim winery before calling it a day. Our final stop was Bladen Wines, about a 30-40 minute ride by bicycle from Allan Scott. The journey was mostly on less-traveled roads without too much traffic and the route was relatively flat. Bladen definitely had a laid back vibe with standing room only at a small tasting room with two sides open to the outside. Picnic tables and lounge chairs made this the perfect winery at which to finish our long day of cycling. We were regaled with stories by John Lowes, Bladen's premier cellar door personality. Definitely stop by to find out about the eventful and adventure-filled life that John has led.
How Strenuous is a Blenheim Wine Tour by Bike?
Wine tasting and cycling are two activities that usually attract travelers with different interests and styles. We are definitely more wine-inclined than athletic. However, cycling around Blenheim wineries was an ideal way to cover a lot of ground, get some exercise, and not have to drive. Bike 2 Wine has a pick-up and drop off service to bring folks from Blenheim to the small town of Renwick where the majority of regional wineries are located. The terrain was relatively flat and you'll mostly be traveling on small backroads. Cycling on a hot day tested our endurance (I most certainly felt like taking a nap by the time we reached Bladen, our final destination of the day) but cycling to the Blenheim wineries is definitely doable for visitors with an average level of fitness. My biggest issue was that the bicycle seat was not very comfortable and my bum felt a bit bruised by the end of the day.
Blenheim Wineries Cycle Route and Map
Check out this handy Blenheim wineries map for locations and distances between vineyards.