best hikes in new zealand
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In total, I probably spent about 45 minutes on the walk as there were so many unique and interesting things to see. For some reason, most don’t stop at this lonely little side of the road hike. The track starts with an easy walk through native bush along a coastal path to a choice of two campgrounds or a hut all located on stunning secluded beaches. Take the small detour to the right of the viewing platform to get to the base of the falls. In bad weather, you won’t be able to cross here at all. For any of the regular hikes, a simple apple and trail mix or something will do. It takes an hour to get from the parking lot to the hut. Park your car here and take the easy waterfall loop to Fushia, Boundary, Hinewai, and Ghost Falls. We take you to the highlights While it can be hiked in three to five days, it can also be biked in two or three days. Also, this hike is entirely exposed so bring tons of water and sunscreen. This is a point to point hike, so transport arrangements must be made for both ends of the hike. Tongariro Alpine Crossing is repeatedly named the best day-hike in New Zealand, famous for its ominous feature in The Lord of the Rings as Mount Doom in the land of Mordor.. The locals are into it (they call it "tramping"), and many overseas visitors come to the country especially for hiking. The track then follows the northern slopes of Tongariro, before zig-zagging all the way down the mountainside. The second half of the road, however, is more questionable. After a series of steep steps, the red tarns will lie before you, sitting below the towering structure of Mount Cook. *Make sure to read my Routeburn Track post to see if doing part of it as a day hike only is best for you! There are some stunning things to see in the Coromandel area of New Zealand, where waterfalls, pristine beaches and incredible views are in abundance. If you’re doing the multiday trips and huts, you’ll need something more. The wide gravel track takes you up the side of the mountain through a series of switchbacks. Hiking (or "tramping") is a New Zealand national pastime, a way of getting close to nature and appreciating the beauty of an unspoiled pristine environment. Continue Reading The beginning of the hike can be sketchy along the ridgeline but that’s what made it fun. The Routeburn Track is one of New Zealand’s Great Walks, it is 33km long and very, very popular, with some of the huts on the trail booked up a year in advance! You’ll get amazing views of the beautiful Lake Rotoiti. If you are on a … If you’re campervanning the country, this hike’s trailhead starts from a DOC campsite. *This is only if you do the ENTIRE thing, you can do what I explained above and just hike small sections of it. Make sure you’re prepared with the proper equipment. Overall this trail ventures through some of the most beautiful areas of Egmont National Park, perfect for adventurers looking to experience the rainforest, alpine swamp, tussock highlands, and magical volcanic features. The crown jewel of New Zealand hiking areas – the Aoraki/Mount Cook National Park has some of the absolute best hikes in South Island New Zealand. The beauty of the Copland Track is like no other. New Zealand is really an amazing place! But the hiker will want to explore the heart of the park, absorb the scenery, and even touch it and feel it. The glacier itself isn’t the most impressive part of the track though (it’s a bit grey and is quite a distance from the viewpoint) – the views along the way are the real highlights. The best way to experience New Zealand is with your own two feet. Find out about opportunities for work online or abroad, how to budget, how to get started, tips, and more! This is one of the wettest places on the planet, with an … Abel Tasman National Park is situated at the very top of the South Island near the Nelson, and Abel Tasman Coast Track was the first of the New Zealand's Great Walks we did and also the least strenuous.. Here you will find there are two separate lookout points that you can hike to; the lower an upper lookout. This is, without a doubt, one of the best day hikes I’ve done in New Zealand and believe me I’ve done A LOT! Don’t book a hut and come with nothing but your hiking boots and your camera. There are more than the best hikes in New Zealand. is all about how to work abroad to live a more adventurous life. Located in Wanaka in the South Island, Roy’s Peak is visited by hundreds if not thousands of people … The 1 to 4 day Kepler Track hike is one of the best hikes in New Zealand, taking you through the incredible landscapes of Fiordland National Park on South Island. I can unsubscribe any time using the unsubscribe link at the end of all emails. This hike is not for the fainthearted – it’s a difficult climb with an elevation gain of nearly 1,000 meters. A Guide to Hiking The Kepler Track in Fiordland National Park, New Zealand On top of that, the majority of the hikes on this list have helpful links for you to get even more information on the hike and the area too, so feel free to click around on your favorite hikes! If you prefer, you can break up your hike and make it a two-day walk. The following New Zealand hikes are all listed with roundtrip distances and the difficult rating was standardized using alltrails.com, however, there is some personal experience sprinkled in to give you a better idea of the hike as well. Being location independent is empowering and I know you can do it too! Fodor's may use your email address to send you relevant information on site updates, account changes, and offers. Tongariro and Mt. I’d estimate it’s another 1.5 kilometers round trip and would make this hike more moderate than easy. 9 of the Best Dark Sky Parks in North America to See the Night Skies, Meet the Treasure Hunters Magnet Fishing in City Waterways, The Best Cold-Weather Activities in 10 Iconic “Summer” Towns, 20 Ultimate Things to Do in New York City, 10 Things to Do in Orlando Besides Theme Parks. Recommended by Josh from The Lost Passport. Transport can be arranged from the local village. Hiking New Zealand’s South Island is definitely the way to get the best views, and you don’t even need to do a multi-day hike, a day walk in the South Island will do! If you’re looking for an easy hike with lots of scenic variety, the Franz Josef Glacier Track shouldn’t be missed. Spanning only 32 km (20 miles), Rakiura Track is within Rakiura National Park on Stewart Island. Guide to the Routeburn Track: Should You Do It as a Day Hike? You won’t regret the effort of the steps once you reach the end! This hike is pretty similar to the Roy’s Peak hike, just much less crowded. Ice forms easily on the ridge, and it’s easy to slip down the steep slope. For the rest of the walk the water should be up to your knees as you go against the stream, around boulders and even up small waterfalls. Hiking Roy's Peak & How to NOT to Wait in Line For A Pic (New Zealand) In the Queenstown area, Routeburn Track starts at the north end of Lake Wakatipu and ends in Te Anau. If you’re taking on any of the easier hikes, you’re good to just go, but any of the moderate and difficult hikes, and definitely if you’re staying in any of the huts, it takes two seconds to ring them up and ask them if the conditions are safe. The trek takes you through a remarkable volcanic landscape, with crazy rock formations, moonscape vistas, mighty volcanoes, beautiful colored lakes and steaming cracks in the earth. One of my fav pictures from my time in New Zealand! It is not surprising that many people think it is one of the best hikes in New Zealand, just look at those views! The Copland Track is one of the greatest hikes you’ll find on South Island. If you want to travel longer you have to, Last updated Sep 18, 2020 | Published on Aug 4, 2019. This is the best hiking resource for New Zealand ever written! The 25 kilometers was a lot but again, the trail was easy. Spending the night in a mountain hut is definitely worthy of a spot on an adventurous New Zealand bucket list. Before the final climb to the Pinnacles summit, you can rest your aching legs at the Pinnacles DOC hut. The hut accommodates up to 80 people and is the biggest DOC hut in New Zealand, with a ranger living there permanently. When in the Coromandel, you can’t leave without a visit to Cathedral Cove, a unique cave opening which leads to a beautiful beach. Possibly one of New … The aforementioned swing bridges are long, bouncing, and high. Each of the tracks brings you to forest and native wildlife as well as black sand beaches. You’ll definitely want to stay in the hut for the night after this hike, coming back down in the same day would be quite difficult in my opinion. I always carried my shell from my favorite jacket just in case it rained or it got cold or windy. On your way to the hut, you’ll be surrounded by dense forest. You should allow about 1.5 hours to drive this route one way in the daytime. It will definitely give you an adrenaline rush, just be sure to take proper precautions as it can be challenging. You’ll need a sleeping bag (and a really good and warm one at that), your own food, pots, and pans, sometimes you’ll need to bring your own fire too as many huts have kitchens but no equipment. Does a hike past glacial waters, across swing bridges, below mind-boggling mountains and through lush forested areas sound good? At night, with the stars out in force, the mountainous amphitheater as your environment, and the hot pools to hang out in, the Copland Track hike in New Zealand provides an unforgettable experience. With so many water crossings and muddy spots, be sure to take along a good pair of boots (or at the very least, some old running shoes as they will get dirty) As this hike is a fair way out of the city, you’ll definitely need your own transport. Pouakai Circuit at the famous Taranaki Tarn. New Zealand's hiking and outdoor adventure specialist with tours to suit all fitness levels on great walks and trails. Glistening glaciers on top of mountain peaks, milky turquoise lakes, and golden tussocks wavering in the wind. You’ll also need to carry all your own cooking and camping equipment. I’m in a beanie and shell jacket one minute and a tank top the next…. The Best Long Hikes in New Zealand Easy Long Hikes in New Zealand. We’ve assembled our favorite hiking trails … This won’t be the first river crossing to get through. In the northern Auckland area, the Waitakere Ranges have multiple tracks within them covering over 241 km (150 miles) of land. So keep your body low when you’re walking on tight ridges. It’s a nice view, but not something overly impressive. It spans 60 km (37 miles) and can take three to five days to compete. Lastly, grab a snack or something because speaking of hiking over mountain tops and through forests, this post is packed with over 9,000 words of information on hiking in New Zealand, which is quite a feat in itself. May starts to get tricky particularly with any of the hikes that are in alpine climates. The area can get a bit muddy and if you plan on doing some of the detours, check with DOC first. What I did love was the cows and horses along the way, the fact that NOBODY was on the hike with me and the great work out it gave my glutes. And the cherry on top? The steps made it easier for their packhorses to climb the steep paths to the bushmen’s camp. Note that this track is not for the inexperienced hiker; you will be traveling for hours from one hut to the next, so be prepared for long days and much perseverance. For your hard work, you are rewarded with an almost 360° view over the Coromandel Peninsula that will make you feel like you are on top of the world! The hike is nearly 20km one way but is deceptively difficult, with the most difficult parts coming at the very end. Option 2 – If you have the budget, then you should definitely consider doing the helicopter ride around the glacier. Seriously, at the end of the day, driving is the best way to see New Zealand and the majority of the hikes here would be impossible without driving yourself. The locals are into it (they call it "tramping"), and many overseas visitors come to the country especially for hiking. I’m from Florida and I could literally feel the sun burning my skin. Recommended by Camille from Crafty Explorer. The first half of the road to Rob Roy’s Glacier Track is sealed and in good condition, an easy drive. Weather is psycho in New Zealand. The track takes you around the craggy headland and offers spectacular views over the ocean. This is a challenging hike with a grading of difficult. From the end of the tree line, it’s roughly another 30-minutes on a narrow ridgeline, so watch each step carefully. Snowcapped peaks surround you, making this one of the most incredible views in all of New Zealand. The first of which can be found by following the Waipohatu Trail. I know it’s not always fun to plan so far in advance but sometimes it’s necessary here. Related: 11 Things to Do in The Coromandel, New Zealand. *The mileage on this one is only for the Red Tarns hike, I didn’t track how much extra the summit to Mount Sebastopol was and there’s not much info on it at all! You then have the ridgeline of a mountain to tackle for around another hour, so you will be very happy when you see the red roof of the hut! Located in Kahurangi National Park at the top of the South Island, Heaphy Track is 78.3 km (48.7 miles)... Routeburn Track. However, you shouldn’t let this put you off, they are popular for a reason. It’s a matter of hoisting your, hopefully, ultralight backpack, taking your shoes off and wading across. If you fancy using a toilet with one of the best views in the world, then take the hike to the French Ridge Hut. Due to its remote location in Kahurangi National Park, the trail takes a detour of more than an hour for those who’re doing road trips in New Zealand South Island. Likewise, you need a head for heights. Nina Ragusa is an adventurer, messy bun master, breakfast fan, and full-time travel blogger. Most of the hikes and trailheads are not easily accessible via a mode of public transportation and having your own car will be invaluable. The lower lookout is located at about half distance and offers a view of the glacier through an opening in the forest. The Castle Hill hike in New Zealand is super popular for appearing in films like The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe and you can totally see why. Climbing to the top of it is not the sort of thing one tackles as a day jaunt – this is serious mountain climbing country which has been tackled by world famous climbers such Edmund Hillary. And be sure you don’t miss the sunset! This awe-inspiring track was created to show visitors the very best features of Fiordlands, including glacier-carved valleys, mountains, native forests and plenty of waterfalls. There are many fantastic long-distance treks that … There are so many beautiful day hikes in New Zealand, but some of the best are definitely in the south. Day two is the longest with a few uphill climbs through dense bush and an overnight stay prime kiwi spotting territory before the final short day back to the picturesque little town of Oban and ferries back to the mainland. Revolutionary information, right? The Best Long Hikes in New Zealand Easy Long Hikes in New Zealand. The Abel Tasman walk is a multi-day Great Walk Hike however, we decided to make our lives easier and leave tons of money in our wallet by doing two separate day hikes. On the trip, don’t miss out on the slight detour that will take you up to the mighty Bell Falls to see the water cascade over the ancient lava flow. Although it’s only a short track, the route is packed with gorgeous surroundings and a variety of views the whole way. It has also been living under the shadow of Abel Tasman and Nelson Lakes National Park located beside it. Ngauruhoe along the way, and the rest of the Circuit brings you views of other parts of the North Island including Lake Taupo, Mt. The Onahau Lookout and the little bays in between provide some great views and are towards the beginning of the trail if you just want to pop in for a day as we did. You can take a little detour along the beach if you want to avoid this spot. You then descend on volcanic scree to the Emerald Lakes. It’s beautiful and pretty easy to reach, plus you’ll pass smaller falls on your way there. Tongariro Alpine Crossing is repeatedly named the best day-hike in New Zealand, famous for its ominous feature in The Lord of the Rings as Mount Doom in the land of Mordor.. Be sure to save some energy for the walk to Mclean Falls. One of the most popular and beautiful tracks in the country, the Milford Track is located within Fiordland National Park and runs 53.4 km (33.2 miles). Required fields are marked *, By using this form you agree with the storage and handling of your data by this website. 5 Epic Hikes in Mount Cook National Park That Are TOTALLY Worth It (New Zealand) This day was a bit easier with around 14 kilometers under the belt but again, the trail is pretty easy. Keep in mind they have opposite seasons of my European and American friends… and also, as discussed above, they have some serious hikes and crazy weather, so pack accordingly. The Goldie Bush Walkway is well off the tourist trail but all the same is an incredibly worthwhile and uniquely Kiwi hike. Related: 5 Epic Hikes in Mount Cook National Park That Are TOTALLY Worth It. Best day hikes in New Zealand 1. Related: 11 Things to Do in The Catlins in 2 Days, Recommended by Rohan from Travels of a Bookpacker. Design an incredible day out in Milford Sound that includes all the best, must- ... Fiordland Jet Boat and Bike Combo Tour. This is partly because many longer hikes eventually cross a high … So, you will need to wear good hiking shoes to do this track. There are a BBQ and gas cookers available for your convenience. The barrier is there for a reason and you SHOULD NOT pass it! 90 minutes to spare in Ōpunake, Taranaki. A great way to tackle the hike is to do one side one day, and then save the other half for another day (saving you hundreds of dollars by the way!). Recommended by Jon from See the South Island. It’s a straight-up hike that gets quite steep in some spots and the loose ground leaves you scrambling without getting anywhere at some points. As much as the water of Lake Tekapo is beautiful and easy to see from a parking lot, there are a few incredible hikes in the area that provide a better vista, such as the Peninsula Walk. The Wilkies Pools and Dawson Falls are a safe bet usually as they are easily accessible but the detours get messy, literally! 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