Te Araroa - The Top 6 Day Walks
Te Araroa isnt just for long walkers - whether you're getting your first taste of Te Araroa, or only have a day to spare - get out and enjoy these stunning Day Walks. Click on the Track Name to be taken to more information and maps for that walk.
Bream Tail Mangawhai Walkway - Northland
This is an excellent beach and cliff-top walkway through farmland and bush areas. The high quality grading of the track has made it one of the top attractions in the Whangarei area. You will enjoy outstanding views of Bream Head, the hen and Chicken Islands, and all the way down to the Hauraki Gulf including the Mokohinau Islands and Great/Little Barrier Islands.
Puhoi Track - Auckland
This track opened in 2014 and was the first track Te Araroa Trust purpose-built for daywalkers. Up the Puhoi Valley, a kilometre past the famous Puhoi Cheese Factory (perfect place to fuel up for the walk ahead!) a swingbridge crosses the Puhoi River to enter the track. Climbing a ridge where exotic pine forest and New Zealand native forest meets, you'll see a handful of young kauri trees standing sentry along the way. Once up and over the high point, the track descends through untouched mature trees giving walkers a glimpse of what the New Zealand landscape once was. Climbing again to more kauri before exiting the forest onto farmed pasture with glorious views of the valley below - here's a hint, walk this in autumn! The track exits into the Puhoi Domain, opposite the historic Puhoi Pub where deserving walkers are welcomed.
Tongariro Alpine Crossing - Whanganui
The Tongariro Alpine Crossing in Tongariro National Park is one of New Zealand's most spectacular tramping tracks, and is considered the most popular one-day tramp in New Zealand. The Tongariro National Park is a World Heritage site which has the distinction of dual status, as it has been acknowledged for both its natural and cultural significance. The crossing passes over the volcanic terrain of the multi-cratered active volcano Mt Tongariro, passing the eastern base of Mt Ngauruhoe which can optionally be climbed as a side trip. The 19.4km (12.1mi) walk is renowned for its barren yet beautiful "moon like" volcanic landscape, unusual geological features, visible volcanic activity and views of the surrounding countryside below. The track reopened in 2013 following the Mt Tongariro volcanic activity.
Wellington City - Wellington
Starting at the top of Wellington's famous Cable Car this route takes in a "Greatest Hits" show of inner-city Wellington. The Botanic Gardens, historic Bolton St Cemetary, past Parliament and New Zealand's Supreme Court, the "Golden Mile" of Lambton Quay and Willis St, through Civic Square and to the splendid Wellington waterfront. There are plenty of spots along the way to test Wellington's reputation as the "coffee capital". Continue past Te Papa (the National Museum) and around Oriental Bay to where this route ends. Those seeking a little more can continue on the Southern Walkway to Island Bay - where Te Araroa in the North Island starts and ends.
Gladstone to Wanaka - Otago
Starting at the Gladstone Reserve on the shore of Lake Hawea this is a long (30.5km) though generally flat walk along lakes and rivers. The trails have in recent years been invigorated by the Upper Clutha Tracks Trust and contain information panels along the route telling local history and highlights. From Lake Hawea, the Hawea River Track follows the river throguh to Albert Town. Then the Outlet Track follows the Clutha up to its origin at the Lake Wanaka outlet where you'll enjoy wonderful views across the lake to the Southern Alps. From the outlet head around onto the Wanaka lakefront where a number of cafes, bars and restaurants lie in wait as reward for a long walk.
Long Hilly Track/Tihaka Beach Track - Southland
These two tracks uniquely capture some of New Zealand's early history and the rugged beauty of the south coast of Southland. The Long Hilly Track is an extremely popular daywalk, taking in a number of historic mine workings from what was once the largest Chinese mining settlement in New Zealand, dating back to 1874. There is a loop track available for day-walkers which takes 2hr15min and a very informative booklet can be purchased from the Colac Bay Tavern. There is a carpark and toilet at the end of Round Hill Rd.
To the south the beautiful coastline awaits and the Tihaka Beach Track guides walkers around the rocky shoreline from Colac Bay to Mores Reserve in Riverton. Surfers should keep their eyes peeled for a wonderful example of a left-hand point break curling around the coast.