Tongariro Alpine Crossing

HARD 106 reviews
#1 of 17 trails in

Tongariro Alpine Crossing is a 11.6 mile heavily trafficked point-to-point trail located near Whakapapa Village, Manawatu-Wanganui Region, New Zealand that features a lake and is rated as difficult. The trail is primarily used for hiking, nature trips, and birding and is accessible year-round.

DISTANCE
11.6 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
2,690 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Point to Point

birding

hiking

nature trips

lake

hot springs

views

muddy

rocky

snow

no dogs

No permit is needed for the one-day Tongariro Alpine Crossing hike, however transportation arrangements must be made for both ends of the hike. You must also be mindful of shuttle pick-up times if you decide to summit Mt. Tongariro or Mt. Ngauruhoe (both cannot be done within the same day). There are sections of the hike that are considered active volcano areas.

hiking
1 month ago

ABSOLUTELY AMAZING. I have to confessed, we decide to do this hike because of "mount doom" and after completing it we were amazed with EVERYTHING. we did it around January 4-7, cant recall the exact day by now :/

We took a shuttle from our RV campground to Mangatepopo car park; and the same service pick us up at Ketetahi car park. (I think we used this one https://nationalparkshuttles.rezdy.com/190355/tongariro-alpine-crossing-return-transport-from-national-park-village-to-the-mangatepopo-car-park )
At the start it was misty and light rain, by the time we hit the real steep part it was foggy; we stay around 1h in the highest point, and when going down it was sunny.
Our shuttle pick us up around 9am, and we got the last shuttle back at 6pm. Took around 1h on the top and took a LOT of picture. we (I) are also slow pace hikers.

Is suppose to be very crowded, dunno if it was because there was storm in the area the day before (we had to re-schedule our trip to the area and stay in Taupo an extra day) but it never felt crowded.

Advice: Make sure you have rain jacket, do layers (I was wearing 1 t-shirt, 1 swearer, raining jacket; 1 legging and one water proof pant on top >> end up with leggings and t-shirt; swearer on and off)
We took 2L water each, but it was not as hot/humid so we consume less water than on previous hikes.
Good boots
DONT forget your camera :D

Enjoy

hiking
1 month ago

February 2018

hiking
1 month ago

Absolutely beautiful absolutely stunning a day of dreams coming true dis this beast twice and miss it every single day. Always have dreams of it and will 100% do it many more times just for inner satisfaction

3 months ago

Great scenery if you’re not in a cloud (like it was when we did it). The trail was clear when we started but clouded up by the time we got above bushline. The biggest detractor is the sheer volume of people. There were quite possibly 1000 other folks on the trail and many times we were waiting in line on certain parts of the trail. For us this was a huge detractor from the overall experience. We hiked this in early March on a Saturday so that probably was a factor in the busyness. There are lots of other spots in NZ that are far less crowded.

hiking
3 months ago

I visited both north and south islands in November 2017. Overall, I loved the south island a bit more in terms of alpine hiking/epic views, but this north island hike ended up being my favorite on the entire trip. This hike has to be the most popular hike in NZ other than the Milford Track (not a day hike like this one), and for great reason. It also seems to be one of the most diverse hikes in NZ including volcanoes, crater lakes, glacial valleys, and rainforest at the end. We had every type of weather along the way, and I loved it. Bring rain gear/great boots and you'll be fine. This will definitely make a great memory if you decide to do it. Like I said. Very popular, but for a reason. Tongariro Expeditions shuttles from Taupo worked out great. Take the early bird shuttle at 5:30 am. to get a head start before the rest.

hiking
3 months ago

Best day of my life so far.

hiking
3 months ago

Epic..... even on a cloudy rainy day. The hillside and rain forest vegetation are completely stunning.

hiking
3 months ago

Most challenging and amazing hike of my life. Life changing.

3 months ago

Absolutely incredible

4 months ago

The best 1 day hike I've done so far..the most out -of-this-world landscape I've seen so far on the stretch mangatipopo hut to soda springs checkpoint..
Weather was manageable, light showers and heavy fog on the way..strong winds at the summit of the pass - 60kmph as per forecast website, but was manageable.
Elevation gain is moderate and manageable, distance too, nothing too strenuous. Distance is actually about 13.5miles. Trail is well marked and easy to follow and paved for the most part.
We were discouraged from the crossing due to the weather but realized that it was no where close to what they were making it to be. If in doubt, just do it, the views you will be treated with are priceless.

hiking
4 months ago

Great trail! We had sun, rain, and very strong winds. Hiking in the clouds and in a volcano was pretty awesome. One of the harder hikes I have taken but well worth the effort.

4 months ago

Just make sure the wind will not be too strong when you go there because it could be dangerous. After that, this is one of the best 1h trek in the world for a reason... it’s incredible !

hiking
4 months ago

Only reason for the 4 rating is because we weren’t able to finish and the sign at the beginning that said we shouldn’t hike wasn’t displayed when we left. We started out very early (6am) last Wednesday and while we were expecting a bit of wind and rain we were not prepared for 50+KPH and heavy rain. We didn’t hit the heavy wind and rain until the top when we thought things would clear up and we now understand why the signs with warnings are there. We ended up making the decision to turn back along with a couple other groups from Australia, Canada and Belgium. All of us just weren’t prepared for the sideways rain that pushed us around at the top and cold temps - we just need to come back and challenge Mt Doom another time.

5 months ago

If you can imagine the people as wildflowers in your landscape you will be rewarded with some pretty unique scenery and an awesome scree slide. Takes lots of vista stops even if the traffic flow is pushing you along.

6 months ago

Absolument incroyable! Un must to do!

hiking
7 months ago

Bloody amazing. We had the perfect day so the views were awesome!

hiking
7 months ago

Amazing views. Very challenging hike. Not for the faint of heart. Ascending is very tiring and descending is rough on the knees and quads. Bring food and first aid kit and plenty of water

hiking
7 months ago

Great weather, great hike! The trail is in amazing condition. Devil staircase is a challenging part of the hike and then coming off the summit, it’s loose rock and pumice. We did it with a guide because we didn’t know what to expect, however you could easily manage without a guide in the summer months.

hiking
7 months ago

Very picturesque parts of the track - certainly deserved the credit it's given, but can be tough of the knees and feet.
There are very steep inclines, loose rocks and gravel, and the top of trek can be very windy and cold.
There are far too many people along the track, but it managed to keep it's ruggedness nonetheless - so don't go unprepared!

8 months ago

Too many people, but worth it.

10 months ago

We did this as part of our Tongoriro Northern Circuit hike (takes 4-5 days). Very beautiful! Very tough day hike. There are people who turn back or just sit down off the trail waiting for their group to come back. Hard on the knees. Very busy trail!!! It's basically a line of people doing this thing.

hiking
10 months ago

An amazing hike.The views are fantastic. Prepare for all weather. I did it in late January (summer) It was really cold when we started and then it got hot, then really windy with a bit of chill factor and rained on the way down! The track was incredibly busy at this time of year, but chatted with lots of really cool people from all over the world! My husband and I did this with our then 12 year old at his request. Even though he is really fit, it was tough going for him.

10 months ago

amazing hike! the view is worth the effort.

10 months ago

Do it!

hiking
10 months ago

Did this hike in September 2016. Amazing amazing experience!

hiking
11 months ago

Probably the best day hike anywhere in the world. Volcanoes, lakes, a variety of topography. The only downside is it's very popular and you might get a bit held up on the steep parts.

hiking
11 months ago

Amazing hike! When I hiked it with my family we had the best conditions possible. The sun was out, no clouds, no rain, and little wind. Couldn't have asked for better conditions. Definitely worth the climb for the views!

I hiked this trail in May.

hiking
Friday, June 23, 2017

I did this hike in mid-January as part of a g adventures north island tour (highly recommend if you don't need frills and want to travel with a diverse group of people of all ages from all over the world; no single supplement to boot). This became one of my favorite hikes in the world (so much variety!). It will become yours too, especially if you're a Lord of the Rings fan (I can't tell you how many times I heard, "Behold! Mt. Doom!"). Prepare for all weather/temperatures, including severe winds on the first climb. The pools are a nice spot to rest, gape in awe, and take in some lunch. The switchbacks on the back half of the hike seem to go on FOREVER (although the views are magnificent), but finally end in a beautiful forest that seems to heal you from any previous exhaustion. Loved this hike!

hiking
Friday, June 02, 2017

Great trail with nice landscapes!

hiking
Monday, May 08, 2017

This hike should be on everyone's bucket list! Definitely need sturdy shoes and lots of water. Wear lots of layers during fall. We booked a ride from the finish to the start of the trail so we could get our car and travel at our own pace. Took us 7 hours, very hard! Our step counter said we climbed 182 floors! Definitely need to be in good shape. Incredibly beautiful!

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