Day 1 - Ngāruawāhia - Hamilton Gardens (27km)
When sleepy little Ngāruawāhia was bypassed by the Waikato Expressway, the riverside town became even quieter.
However, having visited recently to cycle Te Awa – The Great New Zealand River Ride, I gained a newfound appreciation for the place.
At the foot of the Hakarimata Range in the heart of Ngaruawahia there's a park called The Point. It's serene and clean with a fabulous play area and skate park, the loo even plays music.