New Zealand

Description

Mount Cook - by Chris New Zealand is paradise for hikers. Tramping, as hiking or walking is called here, is very popular and well organised. Most tramps are inside one of New Zealand’s 14 NPs and 19 National Forests.
From the northern tip to Stewart Island in the south, New Zealand stretches out for 1.600 km, and the country has a 10% larger area than Great Britain. Thanks to high rainfall, its elongated north-south position, geology, mountains and winds, the country offers an enormous variety in landscapes. You will find countless rivers and lakes filled with fish, lush rainforests, alpine ridges and active volcanoes. The coastline is seemingly endless and varied, and dotted with small beaches. In all these landscapes hiking trails have been laid out. Ideal if you are looking for wilderness and isolation.
Trails, or tracks as they are called locally, and so-called backcountry huts are mostly maintained by the Department of Conservation (DOC). Tramping is possible on all levels of difficulty. The DOC distinguishes 6 Track Categories:

  • Easy Access Tracks (very short)
  • Short Walks
  • Walking track (2429 km): day hikes
  • Great walks (380 km) and Easy tramping tracks (895 km): track is generally well formed, may be steep, rough or muddy
  • Tramping tracks (7803 km): track is mostly unformed with steep, rough or muddy sections
  • Routes (1458 km): challenging; Track is mostly unformed with steep, rough or muddy sections


A special category are the so-called 9 Great Walks. In fact there are only 8, because the Whanganui Journey is a paddling route. These Great Walks are very scenic, not too difficult, and consequently most popular. During high season – from mid December until late January – these are best avoided. The Great Walks are:

  • Lake Waikaremoana Great Walk, 42 km, 4 days
  • Tongariro Northern Circuit, 50 km, 4 days
  • Whanganui Journey - paddle, 144 km, 5 days
  • Abel Tasman Coast Track, 51 km, 5 days
  • Heaphy Track, 78 km, 5 days
  • Routeburn Track, 32 km, 3 days
  • Milford Track, 54, 4 days
  • Kepler Track, 60 km, 4 days
  • Rakiura Track, Stewart Island, 36 km, 3 days


All tramps have huts and camp sites. You will need to bring your own food. Also bring your own stove for cooking, except on the Great Walks where the huts have a kitchen with stove. Most huts are basic and cheap, The better and popular ones may be staffed by a warden. There are three categories of huts:

  • 1000 huts in the NPs. Payment with tickets purchased in advance at for instance DOC visitor information centres. You can also buy a Backcountry Hut Pass, valid for one year, and a good deal if used for 10 nights or more.
  • There are a few Alpine Service Huts, high up in the mountains, which are a lot more expensive
  • Great Walk Huts: these have their own separate ticket system and require a special Great Walks Pass. In addition these Great Walks, because of their popularity, are bookable online (DOC) and consequently frequently booked-out during high season.

 
Summer holidays in New Zealand run from mid December until late January. In this period walking trails are very busy. The Great Walks will be fully booked if you haven’t booked early. If you can avoid the high season, from mid November and until mid April is also a good time for hiking, although you may encounter snow high up in the mountains. Weather is changeable at all times.

Opinions

Rate 9.7 | 3 votes | No 1. in Pacific
  • Miguel
  • Rate 10
  • Positive Better than any postcard at any corner, the landscape defies the imagination of even the most seasoned of hikers - or "trampers" as we are known to Kiwis. People are strangely yet genuinely friendly.
  • bigkev
  • Rate 10
  • Positive Almost everything, except......
  • Negative The Sandflys!
More opinions…

Map

North Island

South Island

Trails

Regions

Mountains

Books

Stanfords
United Kingdom
2009
  • New Zealand - The Great Walks
  • *This guide is highly recommended by Stanfords and is the leading authority on exploring New Zealand’s wild landscapes.*Alexander Stewart’s New Zealand - The Great Walks is the comprehensive and leading guide for those wanting to explore the islands’ wilderness paradises and is highly recommended by Stanfords. The guide covers a range of... Read more
The Book Depository
United Kingdom
The Book Depository
United Kingdom
The Book Depository
United Kingdom
2018
  • Also available from:
  • De Zwerver, Netherlands
» Click to open
De Zwerver
Netherlands
2018
  • Reisgids New Zealand - Nieuw Zeeland | Lonely Planet
  • De perfecte reisgids voor zowel de georganiseerde als de zelfstandige reiziger. Naast een algemene inleiding van het land / streek vol met praktische informatie over hoe je er het beste kunt reizen: slapen, eten, vervoer, excursies ... alles kun je er in vinden. Engelstalig. Lonely Planet Lonely Planet’s New Zealand is your passport to the most... Read more
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The Book Depository
United Kingdom
2018
  • Also available from:
  • De Zwerver, Netherlands
» Click to open
De Zwerver
Netherlands
2018
  • Reisgids Best of New Zealand - Nieuw Zeeland | Lonely Planet
  • De nieuwste reisgidsen-serie van Lonely Planet: een luxe uitgave met als titel 'the Best of ... ' waarin aandacht voor de belangrijkste niet te missen hoogtepunten van het land. Ook hier wordt het kort en bondig geschreven met veel praktische informatie erbj als eten-drinken en vervoer. De lijst met accommodaties - zoals bij de gewone Planets -... Read more
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The Book Depository
United Kingdom
The Book Depository
United Kingdom
The Book Depository
United Kingdom
2018
  • Also available from:
  • De Zwerver, Netherlands
» Click to open
De Zwerver
Netherlands
2018
  • Wandelgids Hiking & Tramping in New Zealand - Nieuw Zeeland | Lonely Planet
  • Uitstekende reisgids met gedetailleerde beschrijvingen van dag- en meerdaagse tochten in dit land. Veel suggesties voor spectaculaire trekkings. Vooral een prima gids om je reis te plannen en te kunnen inschatten hoe, wat, waar en hoelang! Lonely Planet’s Hiking & Tramping in New Zealand is your passport to the most relevant and up-to-date... Read more
» Click to close
The Book Depository
United Kingdom
The Book Depository
United Kingdom
The Book Depository
United Kingdom
Bol.com
Netherlands
  • Lonely Planet New Zealand
  • Lonely Planet: The world's leading travel guide publisher Lonely Planet New Zealand is your passport to the most relevant, up-to-date advice on what to see and skip, and what hidden discoveries await you. Experience Maori culture, be wowed by beautiful glaciers or hike through gorgeous scenery; all with your trusted travel companion. Get to the... Read more
  • Also available from:
  • Bol.com, Belgium
» Click to open
Bol.com
Belgium
  • Lonely Planet New Zealand
  • Lonely Planet: The world's leading travel guide publisher Lonely Planet New Zealand is your passport to the most relevant, up-to-date advice on what to see and skip, and what hidden discoveries await you. Experience Maori culture, be wowed by beautiful glaciers or hike through gorgeous scenery; all with your trusted travel companion. Get to the... Read more
» Click to close
Bol.com
Netherlands
  • New Zealand Travel Guide
  • Covers North and South Ireland and Stewart Island. An Activity based guide - where to go skiing, how to organise a hike on one of the famous tracks. Accommodation covered in detail for all ranges with prices. Restaurant guide for the major cities. Includes a route guide to various areas of the North and South islands. Read more
  • Also available from:
  • Bol.com, Belgium
» Click to open
Bol.com
Belgium
  • New Zealand Travel Guide
  • Covers North and South Ireland and Stewart Island. An Activity based guide - where to go skiing, how to organise a hike on one of the famous tracks. Accommodation covered in detail for all ranges with prices. Restaurant guide for the major cities. Includes a route guide to various areas of the North and South islands. Read more
» Click to close
Bol.com
Netherlands
  • Frommer's New Zealand
  • Frommer's books aren't written by committee, or by travel writers who simply pop in briefly to a destination and then consider the job done. We use seasoned, locally-based journalists like Diana Balham and Kate Fraser. Both are born and bred Kiwis who have worked for the finest newspapers in New Zealand covering travel, culture, cuisine and... Read more
  • Also available from:
  • Bol.com, Belgium
» Click to open
Bol.com
Belgium
  • Frommer's New Zealand
  • Frommer's books aren't written by committee, or by travel writers who simply pop in briefly to a destination and then consider the job done. We use seasoned, locally-based journalists like Diana Balham and Kate Fraser. Both are born and bred Kiwis who have worked for the finest newspapers in New Zealand covering travel, culture, cuisine and... Read more
» Click to close
The Book Depository
United Kingdom
2014
  • Lonely Planet Hiking & Tramping in New Zealand
  • Lonely Planet: The world's leading travel guide publisher Lonely Planet Hiking and Tramping in New Zealand is your passport to all the most relevant and up-to-date advice on what to see, what to skip, and what hidden discoveries await you. Admire the dramatic peaks and valleys of Fiordland National Park, stroll past bays and beaches of the Abel... Read more
  • Also available from:
  • Bol.com, Netherlands
  • Bol.com, Belgium
» Click to open
Bol.com
Netherlands
2014
  • Lonely Planet Tramping in New Zealand 7e Lonely Planet
  • Lonely Planet: The world's leading travel guide publisher Lonely Planet Hiking & Tramping in New Zealand is your passport to all the most relevant and up-to-date advice on what to see, what to skip, and what hidden discoveries await you. Admire the dramatic peaks and valleys of Fiordland National Park, stroll past bays and beaches of the Abel... Read more
Bol.com
Belgium
2014
  • Lonely Planet Tramping in New Zealand 7e Lonely Planet
  • Lonely Planet: The world's leading travel guide publisher Lonely Planet Hiking & Tramping in New Zealand is your passport to all the most relevant and up-to-date advice on what to see, what to skip, and what hidden discoveries await you. Admire the dramatic peaks and valleys of Fiordland National Park, stroll past bays and beaches of the Abel... Read more
» Click to close
More books…

Maps

Stanfords
United Kingdom
  • NZ73 Abut Head to Milford Sound
  • Plan included:Jackson Bay 1:50,000Nautical charts for New Zealand, created by Land Information New Zealand (LINZ), are printed on demand at Stanfords after your order is placed and processed. They provide a detailed coverage of the coastline with a varied range of scales - from overall route planning to detailed harbour charts.Notices to... Read more
Stanfords
United Kingdom
  • NZ8215 Niuatoputapu Group and Niuafo`ou
  • Plans included: Niuatoputapu and Tafahi 1:100,000Niuafo`ou 1:100,000Niuatoputapu Harbour 1:9,000Niuatoputapu Harbour Entrance 1:3,000Nautical charts for New Zealand, created by Land Information New Zealand (LINZ), are printed on demand at Stanfords after your order is placed and processed. They provide a detailed coverage of the coastline with... Read more
Stanfords
United Kingdom
  • Niue
  • Niue at 1:50,000 on an indexed map from New Zealand’s survey organization with an enlargement of the Alofi area showing various public buildings and services, plus on the reverse extensive information about the island. The map has a satellite image as its base, with additional contours at 15m intervals and colouring adjusted to show bush, scrub... Read more
Stanfords
United Kingdom
  • Auckland Motorways and Central City Pathfinder
  • Auckland and district in a series of maps covering various districts of New Zealand, with each title combining a detailed road map with street plans of local towns, all with road and street indexes. The maps are published in two formats: handy Pocket Maps or Pathfinders with, as the publishers put it “Larger print so you don’t squint”.The road... Read more
Stanfords
United Kingdom
  • Palmerston North Pathfinder
  • Palmerston North region in a series of maps covering various districts of New Zealand, with each title combining a detailed road map with street plans of local towns, all with road and street indexes. The maps are published in two formats: handy Pocket Maps or Pathfinders with, as the publishers put it “Larger print so you don’t squint”.The... Read more
Stanfords
United Kingdom
  • NZ4265 Kaipara Harbour
  • Plan included:Wairoa River (Continuation) 1:75,000Nautical charts for New Zealand, created by Land Information New Zealand (LINZ), are printed on demand at Stanfords after your order is placed and processed. They provide a detailed coverage of the coastline with a varied range of scales - from overall route planning to detailed harbour... Read more
Stanfords
United Kingdom
Stanfords
United Kingdom
  • NZ8685 Islands in American Samoa
  • Plans included: Tutuila Island 1:60,000Swains Island 1:50,000Pago Pago Harbour 1:25,000Manua Island 1:100,000Rose Atoll 1:100,000Nautical charts for New Zealand, created by Land Information New Zealand (LINZ), are printed on demand at Stanfords after your order is placed and processed. They provide a detailed coverage of the coastline with a... Read more
Stanfords
United Kingdom
  • New Zealand: Kiwimaps District Road Maps with Street Plans
  • New Zealand in a series of titles from Kiwimaps Ltd, each combining a detailed road map with street plans of local towns, all with road and street indexes. The maps are published in two formats: handy Pocket Maps or Pathfinders with, as the publishers put it “Larger print so you don’t squint”.The road maps, typically around 1:175,000 -... Read more
Stanfords
United Kingdom
  • Masterton and Wairarapa Towns Pocket Map
  • Masterton and Wairarapa towns in a series of maps covering various districts of New Zealand, with each title combining a detailed road map with street plans of local towns, all with road and street indexes. The maps are published in two formats: handy Pocket Maps or Pathfinders with, as the publishers put it “Larger print so you don’t... Read more
Stanfords
United Kingdom
  • Porirua and Kapiti Coast Pathfinder
  • Porirua and Kapiti Coast in a series of maps covering various districts of New Zealand, with each title combining a detailed road map with street plans of local towns, all with road and street indexes. The maps are published in two formats: handy Pocket Maps or Pathfinders with, as the publishers put it “Larger print so you don’t squint”.The... Read more
Stanfords
United Kingdom
  • NZ5411 Tauranga Harbour - Katikati Entrance to Mount Maunganui
  • Plan included:Tauranga Harbour - Katikati Entrance to Mount Maunganui (Continuation) 1:40,000Nautical charts for New Zealand, created by Land Information New Zealand (LINZ), are printed on demand at Stanfords after your order is placed and processed. They provide a detailed coverage of the coastline with a varied range of scales - from overall... Read more
Stanfords
United Kingdom
  • NZ5113 Plans in Rangaunu Bay
  • Plans included:Awanui River 1:20,000Rangaunu Bay and Awanui River Approaches 1:50,000Houhora Harbour 1:25,000Nautical charts for New Zealand, created by Land Information New Zealand (LINZ), are printed on demand at Stanfords after your order is placed and processed. They provide a detailed coverage of the coastline with a varied range of scales... Read more
Stanfords
United Kingdom
  • NZ14903 Approaches to Scott Island
  • Plan included:Scott Island 1:25,000Nautical charts for New Zealand, created by Land Information New Zealand (LINZ), are printed on demand at Stanfords after your order is placed and processed. They provide a detailed coverage of the coastline with a varied range of scales - from overall route planning to detailed harbour charts.Notices to... Read more
Stanfords
United Kingdom
  • NZ945 Plans of the Cook Islands - Northern Sheet
  • Plans included: Penrhyn 1:75,000Suwarrow 1:100,000Nassau 1:75,000Manihiki 1:75,000Rakahanga 1:50,000Suwarrow Lagoon Entrance 1:25,000Pukapuka 1:100,000Penrhyn Taruia Passage 1:6,000Penrhyn Taruia Passage to Gudgeon Bay 1:12,500Nautical charts for New Zealand, created by Land Information New Zealand (LINZ), are printed on demand at Stanfords... Read more
More maps…

Walking holidays

Macs Adventure
United Kingdom
  • Dartmoor & the Jurassic Coast
  • Self guided walking tour on Dartmoor and East coast of Devon. A 2-centre self-guided walking tour exploring Dartmoor and Devon’s Jurassic Coast. With 3 nights spent in Dartmoor and 3 nights in Sidmouth, you can really get to grips with why they are both a paradise for walkers. Dartmoor, with its towering tors and wild moorland has inspired... Read more
Snp Wandelreizen
Netherlands
  • Nieuw-Zeeland - Noordereiland
  • Een kort rondje over het subtropische Noordereiland, dat op vele manieren, naar je eigen smaak, uitgebreid kan worden. Ten eerste kan je op elke overnachtingsplek langer blijven dan die ene nacht die nu standaard is. Ten tweede kan je een verblijf op een andere plek tussenvoegen en ten derde kan je bouwstenen tussenvoegen.   Lekker wandelen?... Read more
Snp Wandelreizen
Netherlands
  • Nieuw-Zeeland - Zuidereiland
  • Een kort rondje over het afwisselende Zuidereiland, dat op vele manieren, naar je eigen smaak, uitgebreid kan worden. Ten eerste kan je op elke overnachtingsplek langer blijven dan die ene nacht die nu standaard is. Ten tweede kan je een verblijf op een andere plek tussenvoegen en ten derde kan je bouwstenen tussenvoegen.  Lekker wandelen? De... Read more
More walking holidays…

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