Mavora Lakes

Mavora Lakes

Mavora Lakes

The Mavora Lakes, although not actually part of the Around the Mountains cycle trail, are so close as you cycle past that they’re really a must do side trip whilst in the area. You’ll also pass several well maintained toilets as you cycle in. Please leave them as you find them and report any issues.

Mavora Lakes consists of two lakes named North Mavora and South Mavora situated amongst an impressive landscape of mountains, lakes, forest and tussock grassland. The Mavora Lakes Park is recognised as part of the Te Wāhipounamu/South-West New Zealand World Heritage Area. The area has rudimentary camping sites and is maintained by the Department of Conservation so is a popular camping area during summer, with opportunities for fishing, boating, four-wheel driving, hunting, horse trekking, mountain biking and tramping. The downside of this popularity is that the gravel road can become very busy at holiday times, especially in the 2 weeks of the Christmas/New Year holidays. With the traffic and dry weather, this also means the road may get very dusty so, wear high viz clothing and take care whilst cycling.

The use of small motorised craft is only permitted on North Mavora Lake – motorised craft are not allowed on South Mavora Lake. Hovercraft and jet skis are not permitted on either lake.

Fishing in the lakes is permitted all year round but the season for the Mararoa River is 1 October – 30 April. All anglers must have a current season’s fishing licence. Brown and rainbow trout are found in the Marora River and both lakes – artificial baits only are permitted. The total bag limit is two fish per.

Lord of the Rings Film Location

The park was also used as a filming location for some scenes in the Lord of the Rings film series: Nen Hithoel, Silverlode and Anduin rivers, Fangorn Forest edge and South of Rivendell. So little photoshopping was needed to recreate the scenes from the book that it’s actually easy to spot where the filming was done. We won’t spoil it but here’s a great example:

Mavora Lakes LOTR Film Site


Want to ride the cycle trail? Check out our different Around the Mountains cycle tours