For any keen walker who hasn’t explored New Zealand, we have only one question to ask: why not? Even those who prefer to travel New Zealand by car, boat or bike can’t avoid hitting the trails at least once in this walker’s paradise. The scenery is stunning, the national parks are plentiful and on these sparsely populated islands, you can often guarantee that the trail will be for your enjoyment alone. Here are just a few options that we hope will whet your appetite for ’tramping’.
New Zealand is renowned for its ‘nine great walks’, the Milford Track on the South Island is probably the most famous of New Zealand’s nine walks. This four day track follows Maori history through a breath-taking landscape of valleys, mountains and fiords which will lead you from Lake Te Anau to Milford Sound. After soaking in the natural beauty, it really is no wonder that you will have to book well ahead before hitting the dirt on this amazing trail. Enjoy the video of the Milford Trek.
If you would like to experience the beauty of Maori history without having to cross too far south, the Whanganui Journey on the north island is another fantastic option. Also a kayak and canoe route, this journey begins at Taumaranui and takes five days to complete as you track the Whanganui River. An important transportation route for centuries, the river was well used by both the Maori and the later Europeans. Now it is a well-protected national park and a beautiful example of the natural wonders New Zealand has to offer.
For those with a true eye for beauty, it will be hard to resist the Abel Tasman National Park. Stretching along the curving northern peninsula of the South island, this park is home to one of the most beautiful stretches of coastline in New Zealand. Playing host to golden-brown beaches, tiny islands and a thick forest, this route is an amazing trek for any skill level.
Another of the most popular trails is found on the North Island, the Tongariro Northern Circuit. A three to four day trek, this incorporates the Tongariro Alpine Crossing, which is one of New Zealand’s most famous day walks and is highly recommended for those who would prefer a day’s outing. Starting and finishing at the foot of Mount Ruapehu, few places, even on New Zealand, can boast this kind of landscape. In an active volcanic region, the lava formations, geysers and stunning emerald mineral lakes will leave the eyes wide and the feet moving.
Kiwi hiking isn’t limited to the famous nine, and any stop in New Zealand will almost guarantee good treks. It’s even possible to access amazing trails from Auckland itself, including those in the Waitakere Ranges, which border the city to the west.
New Zealand is well-equipped for tramping and has the benefit of well-maintained trails and plenty of resources for walking enthusiasts. Whether you are interested in a casual day trek, or a longer overnight journey, there is almost definitely something to please all.
Discover your perfect walking holiday in New Zealand from this selection.