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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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  • Biking trails

    Waihora Trail - Great Lake Trails

    Ride amongst vast stands of Kamahi, through volcanic rock formations and past the intriguing Echo Rock before you start to descend down the Kotukutuku Stream.

  • Biking trails

    Timber Trail

    The 85km long Timber Trail is a unique mountain bike ride across ancestral Maori lands, taking you deep into the ancient Pureora Forest Park in New Zealand's central North Island.

  • Biking trails

    Orakau Trail (Great Lake Trails)

    The Orakau Trail is a nice gradual downhill which takes you through stunning native wetlands before dropping you into the secluded Kawakawa Bay.

  • Biking trails

    Waihaha Hut Track

    The Waihaha Hut Track is set in native forest within the Pureora Forest Park on the western side of Lake Taupo.

  • Bus & coach transport

    Tongariro Expeditions - Taupō

    Transport Shuttles for the Tongariro Alpine Crossing from Ketetahi Park n Ride. This is the most flexible, cost effective way to get to the Tongariro Alpine Crossing.

    $60 Book now
  • Walking & hiking

    Tongariro Guided Walks

    Quality Guided Walking Experiences in an around Tongariro National Park. Our knowledgeable and caring Guides make your day as comfortable and fun as possible in landscapes that will captivate and amaze you. All year round, all equipment provided.

    $120 - $495 Book now
  • Study/Education

    NZ Student Travel

    We organise, plan and operate small group bus tours for student groups. Whatever your needs for your group travel within New Zealand we can offer complete logistics and full operation of your tour.

    $1,000 - $4,000
  • Biking trails

    Waihaha Section - Great Lake Trails

    Towering volcanic rock cliffs, spectacular views and a waterfall hidden deep in the Waihaha Valley are highlights of the Waihaha section.

  • Taupō town

    Waipāhīhī Botanical Reserve

    Perched on a hilltop overlooking the shimmering caldera of Lake Taupō, this sweeping reserve, with its network of trails through different plant collections, is a relaxing haven for visitors.

  • Biking trails

    Tree Trunk Gorge

    The Tree Trunk Gorge trail will take you on a picturesque journey through the Kaimanawa Forest Park. It passes through classic central North Island beech forest, across streams and rivers and over two impressive gorges as it tracks along the upper section of the Tongariro River.

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  4. Walking & hiking