It’s not easy picking a hiking trail when it comes to travel to Australia and New Zealand. With so many beautiful options, it’s hard to decide. But the Coromandel Peninsula has five hikes that will give you a beautiful view again and again:
- Hiking the Hukaunui Falls Track
Time to discover New Zealand, a 90-minute drive from Auckland will take you to the Hukaunui Falls Track, where you can hike up to a gorgeous waterfall. The track is well marked, with directions available online. The round trip hike is about two hours long and has no steep sections. It’s also popular, so if you want something more secluded, opt for one of the other hikes on this list.
Directions: From Thames, follow Te Puru Road toward Waikawau Bay for 17 km. At the end of Te Puru Road turn right onto Hukaunui Road and continue 10 km to the carpark. The track starts at the carpark near the shelter shed in front of the information board. It’s a 90-minute drive from Auckland City to reach this park by car.
- Tongariro Alpine Crossing
This is an easy hike that can be done in a day. It’s not too strenuous, but the terrain can be slippery and there are some steep parts. The highlight of the hike is Mt. Ngauruhoe, which was used to depict Mount Doom in the Lord of the Rings movies (you can visit the filming locations during your trip).
- Lake Waikaremoana
This hike is a moderate 7-hour trek around Lake Waikaremoana on the northern end of New Zealand’s North Island. You’ll have beautiful views of the lake and surrounding peaks as you hike, then spend time exploring caves that were once ancient burial grounds. Lake Waikaremoana sits in the shadow of Mt. Ruapehu in the center of North Island. It’s beautiful clear waters are fed by streams that cascade down Mt. Ruapehu from its glaciers, as well as Lake Rotopounamu, which sits next to it.
- By Lila Higgins
If you love taking in beautiful views, hiking through New Zealand’s forests, coastlines and mountains can be an adventure of a lifetime. The country offers plenty of options for people of all abilities and interests. So, whether you’re a serious hiker who is seeking the best and most challenging terrain or someone who just wants to enjoy a leisurely stroll while taking in the sights and sounds, there are plenty of hikes that will satisfy your cravings for a beautiful view.
- Mt Ngauruhoe and Mt Ruapehu
If you look closely enough when standing on these craters you might see smoke coming up from the top. This hike is open year-round; however, it is recommended that you avoid hiking during winter due to heavy snowfall. This trail was named as an officially recognized Great Walk of New Zealand in 2007.
- Ongarue Gorge
This dramatic gorge is set against Mt Ruapehu and Mt Ngauruhoe and offers spectacular views. There are 3 short walks along Ongarue Stream. The Red Crater Track leads you through forest to a volcanic crater formed during eruptions in 1953-54.
- Cape Reinga Coastal Track (2-3 days)
This is a wonderful coastal track with numerous bays to explore and plenty of seal sightings along the way. It’s pretty remote so you’ll get a good dose of scenery as well as solitude, which is something that can be scarce in NZ!
Like so many great New Zealand hiking trails, this one has a tricky name.
- Tongariro Northern Circuit
This hike is one of the best in New Zealand and if you choose to take it, you’re bound to get breathtaking views of lakes, canyons and valleys. Mt Ngauruhoe (Mt Doom) dominates the park and is an active volcano that erupted in 2007. The Tongariro Northern Circuit is a 7-day hike that ends at Ketetahi Hut on the shores of Lake Rotoaira. This popular hike is close to home, but far from boring thanks to its volcanic surroundings. The Tongariro Northern Circuit takes in the craters of Mt. Ngauruhoe (aka Mt. Doom) and Mt. Tongariro (the volcano that destroyed much of Auckland in the Lord of the Rings movies), and passes through stunning terrain like steaming vents, ash plains and lava flows.