New Zealand's Best Scenic Walks

One of the best things you'll find traveling around New Zealand with Kiwi Experience are all the free scenic walks we take you on. Here's our top picks.

MOST FAMOUS WALK: TONGARIRO CROSSING

The most popular and a must-do activity promoted by the hundreds of thousands of travellers who have done a Kiwi Experience tour. The Tongariro Crossing is considered more of a hike than a comfortable walk, but the reward is enjoying breath-taking volcanic landscapes, panoramic vistas across the central plateau and some surreal turquoise lakes. The Tongariro Crossing is a full day activity, and is often referred to as New Zealand's #1 one-day hike.

BEST SEAL-SPOTTING WALK: KAIKOURA PENINSULA WALKWAY

World-renowned for its spectacular whale watching experiences, you can also find local wildlife much closer to the shore in Kaikoura. The Kaikoura Peninsula Walkway is located just east of the main township. At Point Kean, you may be greeted by male seals loitering around the carpark area, with females and pups seen lazing on rock platforms and playing in the shallows. If you’re visiting Point Kean, we recommend you head up the hill and enjoy the amazing views of the coastline and steep mountain ranges that meet the coast.

BEST NIGHT-TIME WALK: RUAKURI BUSH WALK

If you’re keen to venture out after experiencing Waitomo’s amazing Glowworm Caves, then check out the Ruakuri Bush Walk for more glow worm spotting. Don’t forget to bring a torch to navigate your way around the main bridge. You'll see the glow worms illuminating the banks either side of the track.

BEST SCENIC PHOTO OPPORTUNITY: LAKE MATHESON WALK

Lake Matheson walk offers stunning scenery of picturesque snow-capped mountain peaks and timeless glassy lakes. The mirror reflection of Aoraki and Mount Cook on Lake Matheson's glassy waters is an iconic image and is one of the West Coast's most popular walks and must-sees.

BEST WATERFALL WALK: THUNDER CREEK FALLS

Wherever you are in New Zealand, you’re not too far from a waterfall. However, one of our absolute favourites has to be Thunder Creek Falls in Mount Aspiring National Park. Just a short track takes you to this colossal 28m waterfall. Don’t forget to take a selfie of yourself 'drinking' the waterfall (think tilted head and clever camera angle).

BEST GOLDEN SAND WALK: ABEL TASMAN NATIONAL PARK

With sweeping white-sand beaches, crystal clear inlets and expansive coastal views it's easy to see why Abel Tasman is the country's most popular national park. A quick water taxi transfer or kayak ride will get you amongst the park's stunning surrounds. There are plenty of hikes to choose from with many easy to do in a day. End your hike at Bark Bay or Torrent Bay for a swim in the turquoise waters if it's summer – or if you're game otherwise.

BEST URBAN WALK: WELLINGTON WATERFRONT

It's rare to find a CBD waterfront walkway that boasts views out across uninhabited coastal ranges like Wellington Harbour does. Shouldering the CBD, Wellington’s waterfront walkway looks out to rugged ranges across the harbour. A leisurely stroll along the walkway will take you past New Zealand's national museum, Te Papa, including numerous sculpture and cafes. If you’re visiting over a weekend, then check out Wellington’s waterfront market.

BEST MULTI-DAY WALK: MILFORD TRACK

We all know that New Zealand is blessed with a myriad of spectacular multi-day walks for all ages and fitness levels, however The Milford Track in Fiordland is one of the most famous walks. The Milford Track takes you through spectacular valleys and majestic rivers, and past New Zealand's tallest waterfall. Set aside four days to complete this track, and book in advance due to popularity.

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