Explore the most popular Backpacking trails in New Zealand with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

Reviews (2114)
Photos (8723)
Recordings (1744)
Arnaud VILASECA
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Hiking

Done in 2 days skipping the last boring bit. amazing views on the top of the mountains, mind blowing views :)

Arnaud VILASECA
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarSun Jul 12 2020
Hiking

One of the best hike I've made in my life. Beautiful scenery and nice huts to stay in!

Graeme Forman
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Hiking

Quite “roady”. Nice views, but a boring trail.

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Thassilo E.
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HikingSnow

Great Track but very weather dependent! Beautiful scenery and nice hutts!

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Joseph Pallante
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Hiking

Although I have yet to complete the hike up to the hut, I have spent many days and hours ambling through this track up to Brod Bay. The beginning of the track is flat and to the right, you can see Lake Te Anau and the stoney beach. I'm amazed at how radically different the forest is compared to the beachfront. One second you're shrouded in forest and the next you're exposed and standing on a wind-whipped stoney beach. Further along, you encounter heaps of small waist-high crown ferns as far as the eye can see. Mixed in are beech trees, rimus, and larger palms that blanket the sky. During the winter months, I've been thankful for the canopy coverage from the rain. One time I had to take cover at Dock Bay and happened upon a black Weka which was a pleasant surprise! It's a peaceful feeling as you go along further as the track eventually become surrounded fields of green moss which blanket the forest floor. Tons of hypholoma australianum grow red and orange, some big enough to look like small pancakes sitting on a bed of green fluffy moss. Lots of orange pagoda fungus and coral fungus line the track as well. I even found a rare unidentified Sarcodon species. If your end goal is to reach the hut then so be it, but just meandering around the forest and taking some of the side tracks to just sit and forest bathe in the greenery is meditative af. I'd give this track a high rating given the diversity and change that occurs in such a short distance.

Cia F
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HikingMuddySnow

Great walk. Use DOC directions. We went down from the summit via reed beech track and the river crossing felt something having to do it with water up to the knees when the ford at the begging of the track had only 1/2 foot or less over it. Check snow levels too as parts of the way down felt exposed even with just 1 to 1 1/2 feet. Well worth it. Enjoy

Monique Piddington
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Hiking

The hot water beach at the end is well worth the walk

Richard Jerram
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Hiking

Great fun in the winter. 10 kms of good exercise.

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Cameron McCabe
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HikingSnow

Hiked at end of June so from the turn off to Mt Somers there was thick snow getting up to 4 feet deep but there is a clear path and existing footholds and the markers are visible. It is a steep hike but the views are well worth it. Took 3hrs up and 2.5hrs back down with several small breaks and lunch at the top. Highly recommend for a short challenging hike.

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Peter Trans
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Fee

costed us 25 NZdollars per Person (because of the wintertime). hike is alright and has beautiful views but not worth the 25 dollar (nothing special) - for that price I would pick another hike.

Stefan Macfie
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Hiking

I have done this loop a few times and it is my favorite part of the world by far - I have done it both in training and for enjoyment. Have always started and finished at Iwikau/Whakapapa Village (42km). Have done it in anticlockwise in one day with a very early start and late finish and running where I could - my only advice is DO NOT ATTEMPT TO DO IT IN A DAY!!! This is an alpine environment and extremely changeable - if done anticlockwise the climb from Emerald Lakes to the track summit and descent into Tongariro Crater plateau is very challenging and can be dangerous. Then the stretch from Mangetepopo to Chateau is always exposed, the track usually has ice in it and can be slow going. Likewise if you do it ‘clockwise’ in the afternoon the piece from Waihohonu to Chateau is straight into the setting sun and can have a VERY strong headwind. My advice - take at least 2 days maybe 3. Start and finish at Iwikau Village - otherwise the climb up from Ketetahi is super long and relentless and you can’t stay at Ketetahi Hut - and parking is safer and better at Iwikau. If you do it over 3 days you can side trip to Tama Lakes and summit Ngaruhoe without putting yourself under undue pressure. Do not underestimate how difficult this can be - the maunga is beautiful but it takes its share of lives every year. Enjoy :)

Josh Gray
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Hiking

Amazing views of the sea. The trail follows the coast line. In and out of mixed Bush with fern trees. We stayed in the huts on the way.

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Josh Gray
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Hiking

Amazing views from Marahau to the anchorage hut. The most people I have seen on the track since the lockdown. I’m t was great to see people out and about.

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Erik van Broekhoven
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HikingMuddy
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Sharon Joli
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Muddy

beautiful look out point

Casey Neff
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Amazing hike. Very scenic and beautiful! I went in the morning and it was so private and quiet. Plus, there are sheep everywhere just roaming around, and they're so cute!

niamh tobin
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Walking

nice walk ,fair few steps but moderate and easy trail to the sandpit and back

Joe Sharp
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HikingOver grownScramble

——Found new/ish? access to the start of the track by going down double hill road——Really enjoyed this Trail. Path was pretty clear for most of it. Some sections are quite muddy and long bottoms would be good for the prickly bushes. Big day but all good if you’re a keen walker/runner. I started at around 10 and finished around 5-6 but I didn’t stop much and gave it a good effort. Lots of awesome views!! <3 12/06

Billy Greening
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This trail is perfect for intermediate hikers that are beginning to do overnight hikes. The Ces Clark hut is a cozy hut that can fit quite a lot of people and has a standard kitchen with basic equipment and a nice view overlooking the direction of the southern alps. I recommend going right over the track rather than back the same way if this is possible. Great West Coast walk.

Josh Gray
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Hiking

Amazing views as the trail starts in the river canyon. The scenery was absolutely stunning. Gradual climb up which makes it nice. We stayed at the Pororari hut for one night and then came back to the car park. It was the nicest hut I’ve stayed at. Great stay.

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Rebecca Streiff
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarWed Jun 10 2020
Hiking

A must-do. I have done this hike multiple times and it never disappoints! There are 360 views of Mt. Cook and surrounding glaciers. I highly recommend staying overnight at Mueller Hut. The sunrises and sunsets are breathtaking. It's a tough hike up the stairs but totally worth it!

Bennie Greyling
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarWed Jun 10 2020

Awesome hike. Did it from the Cockle Bay end in Sandspit road, to the Whitford road traffic circle and back. Absolutely moderate as it pretty steep up and down. very scenic, shady, well kept. Abundant bird life, few nice benches to sit and rest, taking in surroundings.

Josh Gray
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarTue Jun 09 2020
Hiking

Beautiful Trail. The trail starts in a river canyon with high rock walls and mixed palm trees, fern trees, and others. It makes the scenery with the river that the trail follows for quite a ways very cool. We only went up to the first hut because the rest of the track was closed. Still a great stay. It was the nicest hut I have stayed at n NZ.

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Kira U.
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Hiking

Haben den Weg in 5 Stunden abgeschlossen (wir = zwei 19-jährige Mädchen). Wunderschöner Weg, wenn man nur einen Tag im Abel Tasman hat! Die 25km sind definitiv machbar, da der Weg keine extremen Steigungen hat, sondern immer auf und ab geht. Der Anstieg zu Gibs Hill ist ein bischen Mühsam, und der Ausblick von dort ist auch nicht spektakulär. Der restliche Weg ist aber unglaublich schön.

Sheryl Maree Marks
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarMon Jun 08 2020

relentless slightly boring walk however this one's is about the destination not the journey rewarded with spectacular views and snow capped mountains

Maciej Łożyński
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WalkingMuddy
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Steph Bunker
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HikingBugsNo shadeRockyScramble

I did this circuit back in January. I did it anti-clockwise and in 3 days. Day 1 from Whakapapa Village to Waihohonu Hut. Day 2 from Whakapapa to Mangatepopo Hut. Day 3 from Mangatepopo to Whakapapa. This is a challenging hike offering little to no shade. If I did this hike again, I would definitely go clockwise and stay the full 4 days to really be able to appreciate the scenery and have time for pretty waterfall side missions. Otherwise, it was a lovely hike and I met many wonderful people along the way!

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