Oamaru has in recent years become a centre for cyclists, many of whom have arrived in town after completing the Alps 2 Ocean cycle trail. Oamaru is a hilly town, and biking here poses a certain challenge, but that challenge is now reduced a bit thanks to a new business that has opened in Thames Street.
The Town Bike offers e-bikes for hire, and if you’re not familiar with e-bikes they look much like regular bicycles, with the addition of an electric system that can assist you when pedalling up hill or going long distances. With a range of around 120km, depending on how much you depend on the electric assist and how many hills you ascend, you can easily use one of these bikes to make your way from Oamaru to points as far away as Elephant Rocks and the Moeraki Boulders.
In a clever move, the shop, which is adjacent to Martyn’s Cycle Shop, even offers a deal if you decide to purchase one of these bicycles for yourself–bring your receipt to Martyn’s and they’ll deduct the value of your bike hire from the cost of a new bicycle to take home!
The Town Bike’s eight bicycles are named for historic “ladies of the evening” who plied their trade in Oamaru, back when the town had more brothels than anywhere in the Southern Hemisphere, a clever nod to Oamaru’s boisterous past.
Bike hire rates are available for rides up to two hours, up to four hours, or up to eight hours, and they offer several suggested spots to visit no matter how long you plan to use them:
Up to Two Hours: Whitestone Cheese; Steampunk HQ; Blue Penguin Colony; Oamaru Lookout Point; Bushy Beach.
Up to Four Hours: Oamaru Lookout Point; Bushy Beach; Kakanui Beach; Moeraki Boulders.
Up to Eight Hours: Elephant Rocks; Alps 2 Ocean Duntroon; Maori Rock Drawings; Kurow Estate Winery.
The Town Bike is open daily from 10am to 6pm at 47 Thames Street.