All your efforts are rewarded with 360-degree views of Mount Aspiring National Park. Hiking Roy's Peak & How to NOT to Wait in Line For A Pic (New Zealand) Although there are a few sets of stairs, it is a mostly flat and walkable path with multiple viewing points to see the different natural formations. Before making this hike, look up the current weather conditions, as this region can sometimes be snowy even during the summer months. This is a great place to catch a glimpse of a kiwi bird and other rare species of birds. You can turn around to loop back or clamber over some rocks and through bushes to continue to Mount Sebastopol to get additional views of Hooker Valley radiating before you and an even better vantage point of Mount Cook. For lovers of reaching high places, take the Harbour Cone Track up a steep hill to one of the best views of the Otago Peninsula in the area from Taiaroa Head to Hoopers Inlet and beyond. There are giant rainwater collection tanks at the hut, but they can run out, and you don’t want to be stuck for the night without water for drinking or cooking. There are several spots where you can see right down the valley, which is flanked by rocky peaks and lots of trees. On that same note, you’ll need tons of water on the hikes. You literally get to soak in hot pools located right next to the hut. Spanning 32 km (20 miles) the track goes through both Fiordland National Park and Mount Aspiring National Park, bringing you through the most breathtaking scenery you’ll ever see. “One of the best day hikes in New Zealand is the hike to Mueller Hut. The hour-long hike will lead you to not one but two huge waterfalls, plus you’ll likely have the view mostly to yourself. You can take the short detour to Boulders Beach with its traditional beach huts, or to the historic Scott’s Cabin, which, rather incredibly, has voyaged all the way to Antarctica and back before being relocated to its scenic resting place. Each of the tracks brings you to forest and native wildlife as well as black sand beaches. With it’s proximity to Queenstown, you’d think people would be flocking here but for some reason, we had this hike, during high season, all to ourselves, and we were not mad about it! Located on New Zealand’s north island, this stunning hike will take you along the beautiful cliffside trail of Mercer Bay track (2.7km) which is studded with viewpoints out onto the raging ocean. If you prefer, you can break up your hike and make it a two-day walk. Travel. 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.. The top offers up some decent views of the surroundings, and if you’re lucky, a crazy foggy spectacle like we encountered. I want emails from Fodor's Travel with travel information and promotions. If you stay here, it gives you the incredible opportunity to watch the sunrise and sunset. The hike takes you through some farmland and along the coast with views of Queenstown in the distance. Make sure to wear suitable footwear if you’re doing the hike. Although it’s only a short track, the route is packed with gorgeous surroundings and a variety of views the whole way. It’s a nice view, but not something overly impressive. In the Marlborough region, the Queen Charlotte Track is 70 km (43.5 miles) with multiple hills, making it more challenging than hikes of a similar length. We will even say that it is also one of the most impressive day hikes in New Zealand. The best way to experience New Zealand is with your own two feet. The landscape is varied, with plenty of beaches, forests, and rivers to explore. It is not surprising that many people think it is one of the best hikes in New Zealand, just look at those views! The first time I did this hike it started raining heavily around halfway through, which was a bit miserable. Recommended by Tayler from Traveling Tayler, During my time in New Zealand, I was really fortunate to be able to extensively explore the South Island. There are no truly easy hikes longer than 4 days in New Zealand. Recommended by Josh from The Lost Passport. You’ll find some of the best hikes in the world within the national parks of New Zealand, and you’ll soon learn there is a difference between visiting a park and hiking it. Take care to mind the ebb and flow of the tides: because this is a beach track, the tides can temporarily disrupt your walk. You can also walk a few extra kilometers up to the top of the hill. You can also extend it, as the hut provides beds, but it is also the perfect candidate for a one day adventure. Since this is a private track, the trail requires you to purchase a day pass. When you get to the top, you will be rewarded with spectacular 360-degree views of Mount Rolleston across the valley, and you’ll be able to enjoy the peace and quiet of the area. 1. The beginning of the hike can be sketchy along the ridgeline but that’s what made it fun. Widely recognised as New Zealand’s best day hike, the Tongariro Alpine Crossing offers a trek across a volcanic alpine landscape. February to April are equally as great and the crowds have thinned out. 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. No summation of day hikes in New Zealand would be complete without mention of the Tongariro Alpine Crossing – the walk which most people just refer to as “the Crossing”. Does a hike past glacial waters, across swing bridges, below mind-boggling mountains and through lush forested areas sound good? As with most places on the West Coast (one of New Zealand’s wettest regions), the weather can play a huge part. There are guided walks as well, which are good for large groups or for the inexperienced hiker. This hike is not for the fainthearted – it’s a difficult climb with an elevation gain of nearly 1,000 meters. The waters rise and rush through at incredible speeds. To start with, the trail is pretty flat, however, there is not much shade which it rough particularly if you are hiking New Zealand in the summer months. Well, it is! The Abel Tasman Coastal Track is considered as the best walk in New Zealand leaving it at top... Dusky Track. Let us know in the comments! There are a few more coves worth visiting along the way too. When hiking New ZealandSouth Island, you will constantly be in awe of the beautiful scenery surrounding you during these hikes. You are so high up you may even get snow flurries in the hight of summer, which can be a pretty cool experience. It has also been living under the shadow of Abel Tasman and Nelson Lakes National Park located beside it. Experience New Zealand at its best with a multi-day hike through the country's most iconic scenery, beautiful national parks and diverse landscapes. Your email address will not be published. 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! There’s a short hike around the peninsula giving you the best views of Akaroa Harbour. It is down a dirt road for a few kilometers but can be done by any vehicle. Those usually don’t book out or are on a first come first serve basis. The Karangahake Gorge Historic Walkway offers a few different hikes such as The Windows (1.8km), which has some beautiful views down over the gorge. {"@context":"http:\/\/schema.org","@type":"ItemList","name":"More New Zealand Hikes","itemListElement":[{"@type":"ListItem","position":0,"url":"https:\/\/whereintheworldisnina.com\/hikes-in-new-zealand\/"},{"@type":"ListItem","position":1,"url":"https:\/\/whereintheworldisnina.com\/kepler-track\/"},{"@type":"ListItem","position":2,"url":"https:\/\/whereintheworldisnina.com\/hikes-mount-cook-national-park\/"},{"@type":"ListItem","position":3,"url":"https:\/\/whereintheworldisnina.com\/routeburn-track\/"},{"@type":"ListItem","position":4,"url":"https:\/\/whereintheworldisnina.com\/hiking-roys-peak\/"},{"@type":"ListItem","position":5,"url":"https:\/\/whereintheworldisnina.com\/mueller-hut\/"}]} However, you shouldn’t let this put you off, they are popular for a reason. Hunt out the trailhead to Koropuku Falls for a short and easy hike to another picturesque waterfall. Be prepared for this hike, as soon as you enter the cave the water is up to your chest. Related: 11 Things to Do in The Coromandel, New Zealand. Doing the best hikes in New Zealand is the best way to stretch your legs and get fresh air after a long day(s) of travel. It will definitely give you an adrenaline rush, just be sure to take proper precautions as it can be challenging. You can enjoy this track on foot or via mountain-biking when tramping traffic is low. The Tongariro Alpine Crossing is New Zealand’s most famous day hike. Continue Reading You won’t regret the effort of the steps once you reach the end! The country is known … This is a 20km, … If you’re lucky you might even catch some dolphins! Firstly, there are some more stairs before you start climbing metal ladders and hooks that are attached to the rocks. If you’re doing one of the Great Walks, the huts can book out a year in advance! Just get lost in it. It starts at Kohaihai, and spans to the upper valley of the Aorere River in the Golden Bay. Glaciers, volcanic pools, rare wildlife, and desert plains are all just mere descriptions of the intense dynamics of this track. No bridges here. Depending on which huts you want to hike to, it’s best to book them in advance. There are tons of trails in the area but the Queen Charlotte Track is the most popular and main trail. 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. As you’re soaking in the landscape, notice the contrast of snow and fire. 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. You’ll weave through … Here you will find there are two separate lookout points that you can hike to; the lower an upper lookout. One of my fav pictures from my time in New Zealand! She’s been abroad and epically failing at the American Dream since 2011. You’ll also need to carry all your own cooking and camping equipment. The Marlborough Sounds are STUNNING and the Queen Charlotte Track runs right through it. So keep your body low when you’re walking on tight ridges. The most popular is the Tunnel Beach Track, and although it’s only around a mile round trip, there is a steep climb back to the starting point. It weaves in and out of the island, touching along most of the coastline and delving into the dense forests. Required fields are marked *, By using this form you agree with the storage and handling of your data by this website. The huts along the way are open for booking, but it can get pretty packed in the summer months so make sure you reserve ahead. Soon the path starts climbing. While the circuit itself is just 8 kilometers, you can extend it and tramp along the Angelus Hut tracks. It is also where you’ll be able to find a short walk to a fern ravine where you may be able to spot some glow worms but you’ll have to come back when it’s dark. Best City Hike (Photo: Nick Davidson) Mt. Marahau to Anchorage is an easy hike for the day, however, it’s long. Rated intermediate, it’s a 2-day hike and a one way in, one way out kind of deal. Weather is psycho in New Zealand. We had a great time as a family a few years back. In fact, you follow the river valley for much of the walk. Continue Reading There are both huts and campgrounds along the way which need to be booked in advance. I know it’s not always fun to plan so far in advance but sometimes it’s necessary here. We take you to the highlights It will take you approximately 3 to 4 hours to go up to the hut which sits at around 1,800m and then another couple of … Other attractions on the looped track help keep it interesting and varied. , Related: An Adventurer’s Guide to Exploring Lake Tekapo. Snowcapped peaks surround you, making this one of the most incredible views in all of New Zealand. Tongariro Alpine Crossing, Tongariro National Park. Possibly one of New … At this high point on the trek, you have tremendous views in every direction of the Tongariro National Park. 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!). Most people will be able to hike the Copland with ease. Near Te Anau on the South Island, the Kepler Track is 60 km (37 miles) and runs through parts of Fiordland National Park. In this post you will find the 10 most beautiful South Island walks: 1. The Foggy Peak hike along Arthur’s Pass gives you exactly what you’d expect, fog! It’s a circular track that can take up to three days to complete. Whakapapa. The Tongariro Crossing takes between six to eight hours to complete. Routeburn Track, Fiordland. The track takes you around the craggy headland and offers spectacular views over the ocean. Definitely follow an offline map when this happens so you don’t wander too close to an edge or something on accident. So, you will need to wear good hiking shoes to do this track. In fact, Temple Basin features outstanding mountain views, a ski lodge, and a beautiful waterfall. 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. A Guide to Hiking The Kepler Track in Fiordland National Park, New Zealand The 13.5km track can be followed from the southern end of Sumner Beach, however, most walkers park at Taylors Mistake beach, which shortens the walk to around 8km. That said, there are a couple of steep ascents throughout and one significant climb at the end. But after the hut, most of the trail will be walking on the ridge. Located on New Zealand’s third-largest island, Stewart Island, this hike is off the beaten path but offers some of the best chances to see New Zealand wildlife including the elusive kiwi. Most hikes in winter require you to be an alpinist or mountaineer. Nina Ragusa is an adventurer, messy bun master, breakfast fan, and full-time travel blogger. I’m in a beanie and shell jacket one minute and a tank top the next…. The Best Day Hikes in New Zealand 1. You’ll get amazing views of the beautiful Lake Rotoiti. The Hooker Valley Track is the most popular hike in the park and do I dare say possibly one of the most popular hikes in New Zealand. Continue Reading You may agree with me and my assessment of the hike and doing it the way I explained can save you tons of money and a whole extra day! If you are on a … It’s beautiful and pretty easy to reach, plus you’ll pass smaller falls on your way there. But I’m an overachiever and also, just one person, so I asked some of my blogger friends to add some of their favorite hikes from New Zealand too! Wait for good weather and check with DOC beforehand if the track’s even open. Plus after a rough hike, I got back to my van, baby wiped myself down, changed, ate… If I had to figure out the bus system after a big hike I would have *cue exaggeration* died. If you don’t mind the crowds, the view is pretty spectacular from the top. You can be drench in sweat one second, freezing the next, and in a rain jacket shortly after… You must pack for all type of conditions if you tackle any of the harder hikes and huts. Located in the Arthur’s Pass National Park, Temple Basin is one of the most scenic trails in the area. Located in Kahurangi National Park at the top of the South Island, Heaphy Track is 78.3 km (48.7 miles)... Routeburn Track. If you’re campervanning the country, this hike’s trailhead starts from a DOC campsite. The hike is easy going and for keen hikers can be done in just two days but is most commonly completed in three days two nights. Mount Cook. Immerse yourself in the great outdoors while hiking in New Zealand with a visit to the Waitakere Ranges and Piha Beach. I only wore Merino Wool socks as they are quick-drying and warm. Your reward for making it to the end are the Welcome Flat hot pools. The trek can be family-friendly if you go the day-trip route or can last three to four days for the true adventurer. At the end of the day this isn’t a written in stone rule of when to hike in New Zealand but a rough guideline, it all depends on the hike and the area at the end of the day! 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. The hike is nearly 20km one way but is deceptively difficult, with the most difficult parts coming at the very end. The track then follows the northern slopes of Tongariro, before zig-zagging all the way down the mountainside. Every single step is worth it and will bring you to the glistening Hooker Lake which frames Mount Cook in the distance. Read all about hiking the Cave Stream before going. Some of the easier hikes in New Zealand will go from easy peasy to needing an ice ax and crampons very quickly. But with this initial foray into Copland sorted, it’s onto the main trail. The end of the loop takes you through a rich green coastal forest before ending back at the street. The Kepler Track is home to the Kepler Challenge, where runners take on the entire track in one day, a feat that usually takes about five hours to complete. I loved this little loop because there were four small waterfalls, good views, and zero people on the trail! Catching sunset and sunrise at the tarn is a must but you won’t be there alone. The route returns via the Pinchgut Track, which zigzags down through woods. This is a challenging hike with a grading of difficult. The track to the Devils Punchbowl Waterfall is easily one of the best short walks in Arthur’s Pass and a popular hike in New Zealand. While in the area be sure to take the 20-minute Kaiate Falls Walk (.8km), a very worthwhile waterfall to visit as well as the two-minute walk to Owharoa Falls which is a gorgeous mossy cascading waterfall just off the main road. After a series of steep steps, the red tarns will lie before you, sitting below the towering structure of Mount Cook. To keep things light and easy, we made the choice to NOT cook any meals on the trail. 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. The last one was the most fun and the most adventurous to get to as you have to play limbo under some fallen trees to get there. You can choose from world famous day-hikes to multi-day "Great Walks" through New Zealand… There are people who get rescued every year because they underestimate New Zealand’s weather and are not properly equipt to survive when things go haywire. The beauty of the Copland Track is like no other. The descent is long and tiring. The locals are into it (they call it "tramping"), and many overseas visitors come to the country especially for hiking. 90 minutes to spare in Ōpunake, Taranaki. This relatively flat track takes you through a glacier-carved valley to a viewpoint overlooking Franz Josef Glacier. During our three months traveling in NZ, we sought out the best trails and hiked as much as possible. You’ll get a 360 view of the dramatic surrounding landscape including views of Lake Wanaka, glinting glaciers and a ridgeline of towering mountains in the distance. If you’re doing the multiday trips and huts, you’ll need something more. Best day hikes in New Zealand 1. If you’re just doing a one night, this is super easy and the best choice. It all depends but the more popular the hut, the more likely you’ll need to reserve. This area is well served by DOC campsites, the Angelus Hut and the Bushline Hut – which has great kitchen facilities, fresh water, heating and 14 bunks available There’s no booking available here, it’s first come first served. 15 Nov, 2020 12:00 AM Quick … This section of the hike is steep and slippery and some may need hiking poles. To visit the Fox Glacier, you have a few different options: Option 1 – You can do the Fox Glacier walk which is an easy flat hike that will take you between 1-2 hours return to complete. Auckland Sea Kayaks. Routeburn Track, Fiordland National Park and Mt Aspiring National Park 5. 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. Most of the hikes and trailheads are not easily accessible via a mode of public transportation and having your own car will be invaluable. 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