5 places to ride before you die

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The spots on Planet Earth you cannot afford to miss on your mountain bike.

Whether it’s sifting through old Lonely Planet guides, browsing travel sites or simply throwing a dart/knife at a map of the globe, January is the best time to plan the year’s two-wheeled adventures. But where to go?! Here’s our guide to the far-flung places we reckon look like some of the best prospects for a mountain-bike adventure.

1. New Zealand

This was relatively easy as it feels like every man and his bike are currently in NZ already. It’s the middle of the Kiwi summer riding season at the minute and the country features what is being widely touted as some of the best riding on earth. It’s quickly becoming a popular ‘training camp’ for the pros of the UCI World Cup desperately seeking year-round endless summer escapades.

The country also plays host to the incredible Gorge Road dirt jumps just in case you get bored of all the downhill runs and singletrack.

Essential spots

Gorge Road dirt jumps, Queenstown: Possibly the best dirt jumps on Earth.

Gravity Bike Park, Rotorua: World-class DH and slopestyle riding on Mount Ngongotaha.

Rainbow Mountain, Rotorua: Ascend Mount Maungakaramea for incredible views before descending amazing trails and dipping your toes in the geothermal pools of Kerosene Creek.

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