Self guided & marked
Short walks

Marked walks

Without the snow, Whakapapa is a fascinating mix of rock, pumice, scoria, and sand. Explore on foot, with four marked walks to help you navigate through the rocky formations. Good walking or hiking shoes are recommended.

Waterfalls Descent

Duration: 1-2 hours (descent).
Descend the same path as ancient lava flows and lahars from the top of the Sky Waka gondola, past stunning waterfalls, rugged volcanic terrain, and incredible views of the Central Plateau.

Skyline Walk

Duration: 1.5-2.5 hours (return).
Described as one of the best short walks in the Tongariro National Park, the Skyline Walk takes you from the top of the Sky Waka gondola (2020m) to the Skyline Ridge (2300m), with views out to Mt Ngauruhoe, Lake Taupō, and beyond.

Meads Wall

Duration: 20 minutes (return).
The Meads Wall is a short ten-minute walk from the bottom of the Rangatira Chairlift at the Whakapapa ski field. It leads to a Lord of the Rings movie location as well as some spectacular rock climbing.

Wild West Trail

Duration: 2 - 2.5 hours (return).
From the top of the Sky Waka gondola, follow the trail markers west on a journey that winds its way downhill through open terrain with views out to Mt Tongariro, Mt Ngauruhoe, and Mt Taranaki

Safety in summer

Our short walks are open between December and April (weather dependant).

Patience and suitable clothing is recommended on all walks. It is important that you are prepared for the alpine environment at Mt Ruapehu, including packing water and sunscreen. Let someone know where you are headed and we recommend this simple and easy tool to plan your trip.

Keep an eye on the temperature gauge – this should give you an indication on how to dress appropriately for our alpine environment. We advise checking the conditions on mountain and the status of our walks before you set off.