Just south of Turangi are three massive volcanoes (Tongariro, Ngauruhoe and Ruapehu) – located in Tongariro National Park, New Zealand’s oldest national park and the fifth oldest in the world. Today we’ll hike to the Taranaki Falls and Silica Rapids around the base of Mount Ruapehu, both of these hikes showcase a variety of flora from native beech forest to sub-alpine shrublands, each culminating with a spectacular view; Taranaki Falls is 20 meters (65 feet) high and Silica Rapids has water cascading down a series of creamy white terraces.
For more experienced hikers, we have the option to complete the Tongariro Alpine Crossing and this full-day hike is challenging and unforgettable! The trail takes you through arid volcanic terrain that includes emerald lakes, cold mountain springs, lava flows, active craters, and steam vents – it’s unlike anything else in New Zealand. The Tongariro Alpine Crossing is a more challenging hike in winter (from May until October) with alpine conditions such as snow and ice, and if the weather isn’t suitable for the crossing, we’ll all hike the Taranaki Falls and Silica Rapids. Your option must be confirmed at time of booking. Tonight, you can bathe in some natural thermal springs before having a celebratory dinner for our last night together.
Creel Lodge, Turangi (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner)
Hiking: Tongariro Crossing: 20 kilometers (12 miles), 7-8 hours, elevation +/- 1,000 meters (3,280 feet)
Hiking: Taranaki Falls: 6 kilometers (3.7 miles), 2 hours, elevation +/- 120 meters (393 feet)
Hiking: Silica Rapids: 7 kilometers (4.3 miles), 2-3 hours, elevation +/- 220 meters (721 feet)