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KAIKOURA WILDERNESS WALKWAY - Two or three day duration

Jutting out from the rugged east coast of the South Island, with a backdrop of steep mountains, snow-capped in winter, Kaikoura is a major attraction for visitors. Its wildlife, including whales, dolphins, seals, birds and crayfish, provides a unique experience. It is also an area rich in history and scenic beauty.
The Kaikoura Peninsula Walkway provides easy access to explore the Kaikoura Peninsula. An impressive collection of information panels located along the Walkway enables you to journey into the fascinating history of the people and to learn of the geology, the animals and the plants that make the area so special. The walk is classified as a walking track and is suitable for families, providing an easy to moderate half- or full-day trip. A section of the Walkway is also accessible to wheelchairs. Walking shoes and warm, windproof clothing are required.

The Kaikoura Peninsula Walkway is a joint community project, shared among Whale Watch Kaikoura, Te Runanga o Kaikoura, Kaikoura District Council and the Department of Conservation (DOC). Whale Watch Kaikoura and Te Runanga o Kaikoura allow access over private land for parts of the Walkway; Kaikoura District Council manages the urban sections, including Toms Track and Dempseys Track; the remainder is managed by DOC.Distinctive marker posts and, at some locations, interpretation signs link a loop walkway, sometimes following urban footpaths and road verge, from West End the town centre, to Point Kean car park.
The track crosses the Peninsula's cliff top, with excellent views of the Seaward Kaikoura Range, ocean and coastline, to South Bay. It returns to the township via South Bay and Toms Track. To fully explore and enjoy the features of the walk, allow at least three hours to complete the whole walkway, which extends 11.7 kilometres.


 

ABEL TASMAN COASTAL TRACK - three to five days duration - 51km

The Abel Tasman Coast Track, located in Abel Tasman National Park on South Island's northern shores. The Coast Track is a Great Walk and extends for 54.4 km. All streams are bridged but there are tidal crossings which can only be crossed within a few hours either side of low tide. The track takes an average of three to five days to complete and can be walked from either end. There are huts and campsites where you can stay for a fee. Bookings are required.

There is no charge for day walks. Visitors can walk into the park from the road end carparks, catch water taxis to
beaches along the track or kayak along the coast.

The nearest towns of Nelson, Motueka and Takaka have i-SITES, accommodation and shops catering for tramping and kayaking needs. Kaiteriteri has a petrol station, small grocery shop, accommodation and café. Marahau has accommodation, a shop and cafés. Takaka is the last place for petrol before Totaranui.


 

HEAPHY TRACK - four to six days duration - 82km

The Heaphy Track, located in Kahurangi National Park at the north-west corner of the South Island, is the longest of the DOC Great Walks. For 78.4 kilometres the track crosses the Park's range of landscapes, starting from the junction of the Brown and Aorere Rivers, over expansive tussock downs to the lush forests, nikau palms and roaring seas of the West Coast.
The track is well formed and suitable for fit, well-equipped people. All rivers and major streams are bridged. The track takes four to six days to walk. There are huts and campsites where you can stay for a fee. Bookings are required.
The nearest towns that cater for trampers are Nelson, Takaka, Westport and Karamea. Karamea has an information centre, petrol station, accommodation, cafés and restaurants, supermarket and general store, and a range of transport options. Takaka has an i-SITE, petrol stations, supermarket, small sport/camping and hardware stores as well as cafés and accommodation. Collingwood has a petrol station, small grocery store, shops, cafés, a pub and accommodation.

Alert/Important notice
- Mountain biking is now allowed on the Heaphy Track on a seasonal basis, from 1 May to 30 September


  KEPLER TRACK - three to four days duration - 60km

The Kepler Track, a 60 kilometre circular track, traverses through the spectacular scenery in Fiordland National Park. It is part of the Te-Wahipounamu – South West New Zealand World Heritage Area and is administered by DOC on behalf of the New Zealand public.

The Kepler Track is located in the south west of the South Island. It is an easy tramping track that takes three to four days to complete. The nearest townships of Te Anau and Manapouri have a full range of accommodation. Shops in Te Anau can cater for all your tramping needs, including equipment hire.

Track times are approximate only and will vary according to fitness, pace of the group, weather and direction of travel.

Most walkers spend the first night at Luxmore Hut as they are in the best place to assess the weather for the next day's walk across the exposed alpine section of the track and also have the first day's hard climb behind them.  


 


LAKE WAIKAREMOANA TRACK - three to four days duration - 46km

The Lake Waikaremoana Great Walk (located in the south-west corner of the 212,673 hectare Te Urewera National Park) is a 46 kilometre 3 to 4 day tramping track which follows the shore of the lake for most of its length. It is one of a network of great walks managed by DOC throughout New Zealand.

Before you go you must book huts and campsites for everyone who is intending to do the walk. This includes those children and young people under 18 years who do not have to pay fees.

The walk traverses a range of terrain with many types of vegetation from the montane beech forest of the Panekire Bluffs to dense rainforest. Podocarp mixed broadleaf forest is dominant in many areas. Bird life in the area is abundant.

A moderate tramp, with magnificent scenery and plenty of opportunity for swimming and fishing ensure the walk is well used throughout the year.  Learn about the area's rich history, conservation projects underway and other activities you can enjoy.


 

MILFORD TRACK - four days duration - 54km

The Milford Track (53.5 kilometres) is in the heart of spectacular Fiordland National Park, part of the Te Wahipounamu – South West New Zealand World Heritage Area and is administered by DOC on behalf of the New Zealand public.

You can walk the track independently or as part of a guided group. Ultimate Hikes hold the only DOC approved concession for overnight guided walks on the Milford Track during the peak walking season.

Located in the southwest of the South Island, the track starts at the head of Lake Te Anau and finishes at Milford Sound. Te Anau, the nearest township has a full range of accommodation, shopping and hire services.


 

RAKIURA TRACK (Stewart Island) - three days duration - 29km

Just a 20 minute flight from Invercargill or an hour by ferry from Bluff, Stewart Island/Rakiura is home to New Zealand's most southerly and newest national park, Rakiura National Park, and the Rakiura Track.

Although the Rakiura Track is a 30 km tramping track, suitable for anyone with moderate fitness, the entire circuit is actually 37 km in total, including road walking. It takes three days, provides a good introduction to the scenery of Stewart Island and is suitable for tramping all year round.
The Rakiura Track can be comfortably tramped in three days.

The circuit follows the open coast, and traverses the sheltered shores of Paterson Inlet. It passes sites of historical interest and introduces many of the common sea and forest birds of the island. Parts of it cross Maori land and access is courtesy of the owners.

The track is suitable for walking in either direction.


 

ROUTEBURN TRACK - two to three days duration - 32km

The Routeburn Track traverses 32 kilometres of Mount Aspiring and Fiordland National Parks, part of Te Wahipounamu – South West New Zealand World Heritage Area and is administered by the Department of Conservation on behalf of the New Zealand public.

Located in the southwest of the South Island the track extends between the head of Lake Wakatipu and S.H. 94, the Te Anau – Milford Road. The nearest townships of Queenstown, Te Anau and Glenorchy have a full range of accommodation. Shops in Queenstown and Te Anau can cater for all your tramping needs, including equipment hire.

You can walk the track independently or as part of a guided group. Ultimate Hikes hold the only DOC approved concession for overnight guided walks on the  Routeburn Track during the peak walking season.


 

TONGARIRO NORTHERN CIRCUIT- three to four days duration

Winding its way over Mt Tongariro and around Mt Ngauruhoe is the Tongariro Northern Circuit, one of the Great Walks of New Zealand.
This walk passes through unique and stunning landforms which include volcanic craters and glacial valleys.

Alert/Important notice - The Tongariro Northern Circuit huts and campsites can now be booked online.

The Tongariro Northern Circuit is considered a challenging tramp, largely on open exposed terrain, much of it on uneven track surface. It can be subject to sudden rapid weather change. You should be at least moderately fit.
If you are considering the Tongariro Northern Circuit please make sure you have good warm clothing, waterproof and windproof parka, leggings, comfortable well constructed hiking boots, hat and 30+ sunscreen. Jeans are not recommended!


 

WHANGANUI JOURNEY - five days duration (by kayak or canoe) - 145km

The Whanganui River winds its way from the mountains to the Tasman Sea through countless hills and valleys. Lowland forest surrounds the river in its middle and lower reaches - the heart of Whanganui National Park.

The 145 kilometre river journey from Taumarunui to Pipiriki takes an average 5 days to complete by canoe. A shorter 3 day journey from Whakahoro to Pipiriki is also possible. Although a river journey, the Whanganui is part of New Zealand's Great Walks network.
The Whanganui River winds its way from the mountains to the Tasman Sea through countless hills and valleys. Lowland forest surrounds the river in its middle and lower reaches - the heart of Whanganui National Park (established in 1986).

Tramping tracks through wild lowland forests and river trips down the mighty Whanganui are popular activities. The area has a unique history and Maori culture is an important part of the park experience.


     

 

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