Ruapehu in Summer
Chair Lift Rides
Take a chair-lift ride up Mount Ruapehu to the Knoll Ridge café/– 2,020 metres above sea level .and is the highest café in New Zealand the view from here is spectacular to say the least.
Hike to the Crater Lake
From Knoll Ridge café you can join a guided walk to Mount Ruapehu’s spectacular Crater Lake. During the Summer and Spring months, these guided walks depart daily (weather permitting) at 9.15 am, at the speed of the group’s slowest person. With your professional and experienced local guide, you’ll hike to Mount Ruapehu’s summit and the crater lake , offering a close-up look at an active volcano from here you look down on Mount Tongariro and another active volcano Mount Ngauruhoe.
Non-guided Walks on Mt Ruapehu
A good number of walks for all ages and fitness levels are available on Mount Ruapehu. Maps are available at the Whakapapa Ski Field and the Whakapapa Visitor Centre.
Visit the Department of conservation website for further info.
Ngauruhoe Summit Walk
Mt Ngauruhoe entices many visitors to its summit. Mount Ngauruhoe is traditionally one of New Zealand’s most active volcanoes but has been relatively quiet since 1975. This hike is best suited to experienced climbers.
The Tongariro Alpine Crossing
The Tongariro Alpine Crossing is known as ‘New Zealand’s best one day walk’, and each year, around 130,000 people experience this spectacular experience. This approximately 7 hour walk is a ‘must-do’ while visiting Tongariro National Park during late spring or summer. The world renowned Tongariro Alpine Crossing takes you over breath-taking volcanic terrain that is as varied as it is spectacular. You will experience hidden treasures such as ancient lava formations, waterfalls that flow from pure mountain river sources, natural hot springs from deep within in the mountains, awe inspiring crater lakes like the Emerald Lakes, Blue Lake and the Red Crater, as well as virgin native forest.
For transport options in the area - www.tongariroexpeditions.com
For information on Tongariro Alpine Crossing - www.doc.govt.nz
Tama Lakes Walk
Allow 5 – 6 hours This walk is an extension of the Taranaki Falls walk, you’ll look down over the lower lake and then begin a steep climb to the upper lake - both lakes are old explosion craters.
Lake Roto pounamu Walk
Allow around 20 minutes. To the lake or a 2 hour walk around the lake (a 5 kilometre loop track).Known as the ‘Greenstone Lake’ and located on the side of Mount Pihanga, this beautiful lake is a popular spot for bird-watchers and nature lovers, and great place for a swim or a fish!
Walking through forest and past beautiful scenery, you’ll come to the Ohinetonga Lagoon. There are picnic areas and great places to swim along the river.
Silica Rapids Walk. Allow 2 to 3 hours return This loop track follows an unusually coloured stream, through beech forest, taking you to the creamy-white terraces of the Silica Rapids.
Allow 1.5 - 2 hours. Tumbling 20 metres over the edge of a large lava flow, which erupted from Ruapehu 15,000 years ago, Taranaki Falls plunge into a boulder-ringed pool. From below the falls there are spectacular views into the water-worn gorges of the Wairere Stream
Ridge Track Walk
Allow around 20 minutes. This walk offers panoramic views of Ruapehu, Ngauruhoe and the surrounding National Park.
Allow 20 minutes each way. Large mounds, believed to have formed thousands of years ago - by debris avalanches - during one of Mount Ruapehu’s periods of volcanic activity. Information panels on the track explain more about these mounds.
Allow 20 minutes Tawhai Falls, tumbling over the edge of an ancient lava flow. Kay Akers often paddle over the falls, magnificent.
The Whakapapa Nature Walk
Allow 20 to 30 minutes. This sealed loop track (with wheelchair access) A series of information panels explain what you are seeing in what was formerly known as the ‘Alpine Garden’.
For more information on walks in the area: