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Walking & hiking in Taupo

Nothing brings you closer to Taupo’s unforgettable wilderness than walking through it.

Taupo’s untouched ancient forests and swamplands, impressive geothermal wonderlands, and breath-taking volcanoes are crisscrossed with excellent walking and hiking tracks of all lengths and levels of difficulty. From pleasant lakefront and riverside strolls like the Great Lake Walkway and Huka Falls trails, through to the Tongariro River Trail and Lake Rotopounamu native bush walks ringing with birdsong, to the epic full-day alpine trek known as the Tongariro Alpine Crossing, which treks across a cratered volcanic moonscape dotted with gemstone-coloured lakes.

Thermal walkways at Craters of the Moon and Orakei Korako expose the power and mystery of the earth’s inner workings in the strange and wonderful landscapes of Taupo’s geothermal areas, and walks in the Pureora Forest Park take you deep into a magical and ancient world of moss covered trees, crystal-clear rivers and melodious birdsong.

Taupo has some of the best walking tracks in New Zealand, all just awaiting the addition of your boot-prints. 

Explore them below, then start planning your walk with New Zealand Mountain Safety Council's Plan My Walk app. An awesome app that provides you with useful information on each track with active alerts, the weather forecast, and the essential gear to bring. Click here to check it out

Walking and hiking trails, tours and guides

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  • Hiking & walking trails

    Waihora Lagoon

    This easy walk in Pureora Forest Park takes you to a small rain-fed lagoon surrounded by tall kahikatea and rimu trees.

  • Hiking & walking trails

    Motuoapa Cliff Lookout Walk

    An easy short walk to a lookout point with panoramic views over the southern end of Lake Taupo.

  • Walking & hiking

    Half Day Tongariro Alpine Guided Group Walk meet at Adrift Tongariro Base

    If you are unable to spend the whole day walking, join us on a half day tour, perfect for families and travellers of all ages and fitness levels. Start on the Tongariro Crossing track and walk amongst the volcanoes to the Soda Springs Waterfall.

    $315 Book now
  • Walking & hiking

    Kaimanawa Ranges Epic 3 Day Adventure

    For our epic 3-day adventure we offer a unique experience where we will traverse a range of different terrains, from the high alpines of Umukarikari and Mt Urchin, to the clear fresh waters of the Waipakihi River.

    $1,000 - $1,200 Book now
  • Hiking & walking trails

    Waikato River Walking Track

    This shared-use track starts at the Huka Falls carpark and ends at Otupo Flat.

  • Bus & coach transport

    Backyard Tours

    Backyard Tours transport services customers from Turangi or National Park Village 'Park n Ride' to Mt Ruapehu Whakapapa Ski fields and to hiking the Tongariro Alpine Crossing from Turangi or the Private Tongariro Shuttle Car Park on SH46.

    $50 - $100 Book now
  • Biking trails

    The Waipapa Trail

    Begin at Bus Stop Café, enjoy narrow forest trails, see historic dam foundations, cross wetland boardwalks, and finish at Waipapa Power Station, featuring technical paths, steep sections, and stunning views of sandstone cliffs and the river. Ideal for adventurous riders seeking a challenging and scenic route

  • Hiking & walking trails

    Lake Rotopounamu

    Nestled on the side of Mt Pihanga, Lake Rotopounamu (‘greenstone lake’) is a special favourite of tree lovers and birdwatchers.

  • Biking trails

    W2K Trail - Great Lake Trails

    The W2K trail is part of the Whakaipo Section of the Great Lake Trails. It provides great views across Lake Taupo and back down towards Kinloch, one of the most beautiful lakeside villages in the country.

  • Geothermal walks

    Tokaanu Thermal Walk

    See steaming hot mineral pools and spluttering mud pools on this short, easy walk.

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