Since getting a weekender in Martinborough we’ve really enjoyed spending more time on bikes with our children. The rural roads are quiet. The terrain is flat. The climate is often milder than our home in Wellington. There’s also ample places to stop for refreshment – from the cafes in the village to the vineyards encompassing Martinborough.
The older children are confident to bike around the village independently – and often enjoy heading out on bike rides with friends that we invite to stay over with us. The day before our family bike ride, the older girls pedalled with their Daddy to the ‘Farmer’s Market’ at Te Kairanga (Alice and I, without having bikes of our own, took the shortcut – in the car with our dog Cocoa). The market runs over the summer months, offering an exquisite selection of fine food and beverages, accompanied by music, in a serene setting. Somehow I always end up finishing off the ‘leftoevers’ – even the toffee apple (thankfully I didn’t chip a tooth cracking through the toffee!!).
The following day, we decided to all pedal out together, on wheels. Our oldest daughter has got into ‘geocaching’ and was very keen to include us all in her new pastime. It is such a fun way to get all the family out the door for some fresh air and exercise. A walk, or a bike ride, is even more fun when there’s a little bit of a ‘treasure hunt’ involved.
Our youngest daughter is only five – and not yet riding at a pace to keep up with the rest of the family – but thanks to ‘March Hare’ bike hire, this was not a problem. At March Hare they have the coolest ways to transport younger children – including a tow bare that fixes to an adult bike, with a seat placed upon a bike wheel and pedals – so that the child feels every bit involved with the action! This photograph explains better…
We enjoyed a beautiful ride, of nearly 10km, before stopping at the delightful Vineyard Cafe at Margrain for lunch (and a little tasting of their fine wines!). The geocache finds were fun (I’m not allowed to give away too much, under instruction from my oldest daughter, but there were some very fun finds – including a koala bear clipped on a Eucalyptus tree – with the geocache attached). Along the way we were followed by a very friendly fantail (always a delightful bird).
As for the food and refreshments at the Vineyard Cafe – they were wonderful – it is a very family friendly place. The children burnt off their remaining energy with a quick run through the vines (under our instruction to ‘not touch the vines’!).
It was a perfect way to finish a beautiful morning of family time on Easter Monday.
We are looking forward to many more bike rides together in the future (with our middle daughter providing a sing-a-long as we ride!).