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Best trails in Canterbury

4,243 Reviews
Trying to find the best Canterbury trails? AllTrails has 219 great hiking trails, trail running trails, mountain biking trails and more, with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers, and nature lovers like you. If you're looking for the best trails around Christchurch, Sheffield or Lyttelton, we've got you covered. Ready for some activity? There are 96 moderate trails in Canterbury ranging from 0.9 to 26.8 miles and from 13 to 5,403 feet above sea level. Start checking them out and you'll be out on the trail in no time!
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Map of trails in Canterbury
Top trails (219)
#1 - Hooker Valley Track to Hooker Lake
Aoraki/Mount Cook National Park
easyYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray Star(307)
Length: 6.5 mi • Est. 3 h 3 m
The trail is easy to follow and has spectacular views. Stunning walks over bridges and beautiful ice formations. Doable for anyone with reasonable fitness. Only a few inclines / steps but not technically difficult. Carpark is pretty much packed after 900am but there is enough parking for ~200 so your bound to get something anytime throughout the day. Show more
#2 - Muller Lake Lookout
Aoraki/Mount Cook National Park
easyYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray Star(368)
Length: 1.2 mi • Est. 34 m
The most spectacular views per ounce of energy in all of New Zealand. Make sure to come on a clear day for the best experience. The trail is easy to follow and very comfortable. The carpark is pretty much packed after 900am but there is enough parking for ~200 so your bound to get something anytime throughout the day. Highly recommended.Show more
#3 - Sealy Tarns Track
Aoraki/Mount Cook National Park
hardYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow Star(253)
Length: 3.5 mi • Est. 2 h 38 m
This trails offers spectacular views of Aoraki Mount Cook and the surrounding valley and mountain ranges. The beginning of the trail is about an hour of stair climbing. https://www.doc.govt.nz/parks-and-recreation/places-to-go/canterbury/places/aoraki-mount-cook-national-park/things-to-do/tracks/Sealy-Tarns-Track/Show more
#4 - Mueller Hut
Aoraki/Mount Cook National Park
hardYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow Star(120)
Length: 6 mi • Est. 4 h 24 m
Perhaps the best overnight hike in New Zealand, this 1000m climb takes you to watch and listen to avalanches tumbling off glaciers beneath the gaze of Mt Cook. Show more
#5 - Mount John Walkway
Twizel, Canterbury, New Zealand
moderateYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray Star(162)
Length: 5.1 mi • Est. 2 h 53 m
Nice hike for a lookout over Lake Tekapo, the city, as well as the surrounding mountains. Definitely worth the time! https://www.doc.govt.nz/parks-and-recreation/places-to-go/canterbury/places/lake-tekapo-area/things-to-do/lake-tekapo-town-tracks/Show more
#6 - Bealey Spur Track
Craigieburn Forest Park
hardYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow Star(78)
Length: 8.3 mi • Est. 5 h 12 m
This is the most gorgeous hike! It is a gentle and constant climb; steep in quite a few places. Most of it seems like an enchanted forest with the mossy trees and ground cover and spindly tall trees either side of the track. There are lots and lots of tree roots projecting across the track with rocky places which adds to the atmosphere of the track. The red toadstools spotted with white dotted along the lower half of the track are beautiful. There ate seem open parts of the track with tussock grasses and boardwalks over mushy ground. There are gorgeous views here. The basic hut that sleeps 6 is about 30 mins walk from the top. After going through trees and mushy ground it is very open here with a rocky path but it’s easy to follow. Highly recommended. https://www.doc.govt.nz/parks-and-recreation/places-to-go/canterbury/places/arthurs-pass-national-park/things-to-do/tracks/bealey-spur-track/Show more
#7 - Devil's Punchbowl Lookout Trail
Arthur's Pass National Park
moderateYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray Star(128)
Length: 1.1 mi • Est. 41 m
Beautiful waterfall with lots of water flowing even in summer. Walk has some steep bits but nothing too hard and well worth climbing up to this waterfall. Lots of parking and toilets at trail head. https://www.doc.govt.nz/parks-and-recreation/places-to-go/canterbury/places/arthurs-pass-national-park/things-to-do/tracks/devils-punchbowl-walking-track/Show more
#8 - Rakaia Gorge Walkway
Rakaia, Canterbury, New Zealand
moderateYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray Star(55)
Length: 5.2 mi • Est. 2 h 53 m
Lovely trail. Scenery and terrain different throughout. Shaded parts and a bit of damp in places. Views at the top are gorgeous. Some over grown parts but nothing you can’t get through. https://www.doc.govt.nz/parks-and-recreation/places-to-go/canterbury/places/mount-hutt-area/things-to-do/rakaia-gorge-walkway/Show more
#9 - Godley Head Walkway from Taylors Mistake
Godley Head Farm Park Reserve
moderateYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray Star(71)
Length: 5.5 mi • Est. 2 h 56 m
Paths starts from the beach. Lovely coastal walk. Gorgeous views. Lots of sheep around. https://ccc.govt.nz/parks-and-gardens/explore-parks/port-hills/godley-head/godley-head-walkwayShow more
#10 - Bridle Path Track
Castle Rock Reserve
moderateYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray Star(75)
Length: 2.9 mi • Est. 2 h 11 m
Hike up and over the Port Hills with amazing views of Lyttelton Harbour & Christchurch City. You can either start in Heathcote from the Christchurch Gondola carpark on Bridle Path Road or head through the tunnel and start from the Lyttelton side on Bridle Path (not "Road").Show more
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