The first thing that many people associate with New Zealand may be the Kiwi bird. But did you also know that the country has amazing views worth hiking for? The many breath-taking landscapes and sceneries have actually made New Zealand a highly sought destination for adventurers. A visit to the country without going on a scenic hike would be a terrible waste.
However, there are some walks that might be considered too strenuous for the average tourist, and would not be recommended for the inexperienced. As a guide, here are some hikes that even beginners can try in an attempt to catch a glimpse of New Zealand’s natural beauty.
Routeburn and Key Summit
Embark on a day walk along the Routeburn and Key Summit Track to catch the amazing views of Fiordland National Park. Renowned for being one of the Great Walks, this 3.4km (return) long hike takes approximately 3 hours to complete, and provides you with spectacular panoramic views of mountains and alpine lakes. Though the route has a slight inclination, it is still relatively manageable for the young and old, making it a great family activity.
Twilight – Te Werahi Loop
This round 16km track provides walkers with an estimated 5 hours of magnificent views. Manoeuvre your way through scrubs and sand dunes to get a rewarding view of dunes and beaches. For hikers who thrive for more, they can opt for two tracks that head to Werahi beach or the Twilight beach for even more coastal landscapes.
Kaikoura Peninsula Walkway
The whole walkway stretches 16km and can take a total of up to 3 hours, but if you are looking for a shorter alternative, the 4.4km distance between the Kaikoura town centre to Point Kean car park may just be rewarding enough. This unique walking track offers amazing landscape spectacles, but also rare encounters with adorable wildlife animals such as seals and seabirds. Be careful not to get too close to the animals, though.
Fox Glacier Te Moeka o Tuawe Valley Walk
Located in the west coast region, this 2.6km serene walk offers unique views unlike the other walks mentioned. Venture up the valleys to get up and close with fascinating views of ice glaciers. Be careful and conscious of reading all the signs though as the Fox Glacier valley could be considered a hazardous environment. Be sure to plan ahead and check if the track is closed on your chosen date.
Tongariro Alpine Crossing
One of the most talked about New Zealand’s Great Walks, this has been a popular hiking ground for outdoor enthusiasts everywhere. The experience will allow you to explore and appreciate the volcanic region of the Tongariro National Park in North Island. Although it is one of the more challenging hikes on this list, many still embark on this to witness the picturesque views made famous by The Lord of the Rings.
– Priscilla Lim, Correspondent (Lifestyle)