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Time: 6 to 8 hr, Distance: 19.4 km one-way

The Tongariro Alpine Crossing is the best known New Zealand day hike set in the middle of the central North Island volcanic plateau.
Pick a good day and the scenery of Mt Tongariro and it's surroundings are incredible! However there is something mysterious and exciting about this area even if it is overcast. If you hate crowds then think again before you walk here in the middle of the high season. It's super busy and you will just be part of a marching ant trail. Attempt the Tongariro Crossing during the week if you want a slightly quieter experience or near the end of the season around March/April when the weather has settled a bit.

The walk is challenging, so good shoes and lots of water is a must. The walk is in an alpine environment and weather here can change by the minute, each season many people are caught out. See the reviews for evidence of this!

If you are a bit uncertain of taking on this beast on your own, there are plenty of guiding companies that can safely take you over the crossing. Enjoy!

NOTE - Recent notification from DOC - Jan 2017

This season we are expecting our highest ever visitor numbers to the Tongariro Alpine Crossing and parking at both car parks are limited. Also the road to the car parks are unsealed and narrow.

We recommend that visitors travel with licenced transport operators from either Whakapapa, National Park Village, Turangi, Taupo and Ohakune. Traffic management will be in place to help but carparks will fill up quickly. To avoid disappointment using a shuttle is the best way to travel to and from the Tongairio Alpine Crossing.

“This summer we need visitors to use the local transport operators to make the most of their trip, enjoy the walk and don’t worry about parking” says Paul Carr, Operations Manager, Recreation and Safety, Tongariro District.

Emerald Lakes - Tongariro Alpine Crossing

Emerald Lakes - Tongariro Alpine Crossing

fleaphotos

Into the depths of Red Crater - Tongariro Crossing

Into the depths of Red Crater - Tongariro Crossing

Rosino

In the mist: South Crater Mt Tongariro

In the mist: South Crater Mt Tongariro

Rosino

How's the serenity.....? - Summit, Mt Tongariro

How's the serenity.....? - Summit, Mt Tongariro

Rosino

Contact Details

map

RuapehuTongariro / National Park Village

Top of the world......  - Tama Lakes

Tama Lakes track - Whakapapa Village

RuapehuTongariro / National Park Village

Close up of Silica Rapids

Silica Rapids track - Whakapapa Village

RuapehuTongariro / National Park Village

Taranaki Falls in all thier glory

Taranaki Falls track - Whakapapa Village

RuapehuTongariro / National Park Village

Central Crater - Northern Circuit

Tongariro Northern Circuit

RuapehuTongariro / National Park Village

Tawhai Falls, full frontal

Tawhai Falls walk - Whakapapa Village

RuapehuTongariro / National Park Village

Meads Wall, Mt Ruapehu

Mount / Mt Ruapehu - Meads Wall Walk

RuapehuOhakune

Start of the Old Coach Road

Ohakune Old Coach Road - NZ Cycle Trail

RuapehuOhakune

View of the lava flow from Lake Surprise Track.

Lake Surprise track - Ohakune

RuapehuOhakune

View of Falls from the lookout

Waitonga Falls Track

911 reviews with the most recent first, showing page 12 of 71.

Simon Schatz's avatar

Simon Schatz

Germany

Ranking: 9/10

Awesome scenery and nature, possible to complete in one day.

Luca Wohrle's avatar

Luca Wohrle

Germany

Ranking: 8/10

A long but not so heavy walk. A little bit too many people.

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Johannes Wassner's avatar

Johannes Wassner

Germany

Ranking: 10/10

Just amazing. Best day walk I have ever done. Was still great when the weather changed a little bit.

Valentine de Beer's avatar

Valentine de Beer

Denmark

Ranking: 9/10

Amazing walk but too crowded when I did it.

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Juliane Mueller's avatar

Juliane Mueller

Germany

Ranking: 9/10

The Crossing was a must do, but unfortunately every single tourist seems to know that. I walked the track on 19 March 2016 and it was totally overcrowded and impossible to determine your own speed. Apart from this, the view was stunning and a nice reward for the way up. One adviceL pack sunblock, a warm jackers and wear proper hiking boots.

Hee-Chung Hong's avatar

Hee-Chung Hong

Germany

Ranking: 8/10

Too crowded. But a really good experience for amazing views, worth it. They could have had more toilets in between, e.g it is over two hours walk between.

Philipp's avatar

Philipp

Germany

Ranking: 7/10

Amazing walk above the volcanoes of the North Island. Just a bit too crowded but a must see for fans of the Lord of the Rings.

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Melle Eleinga's avatar

Melle Eleinga

Netherlands

Ranking: 7/10

Lots of people. Great walk. Views. A good one day tramp.

Kenlly's avatar

Kenlly

Netherlands

Ranking: 7/10

Really busy!! Extreme amount of people. But spectacular views and good for a one day tramp.

Alex's avatar

Alex

Canada

Ranking: 9/10

Every metre walked was worth it! Beautiful landscapes on a sunny day! A bit crowded though.

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M J's avatar

M J

Canada

Ranking: 10/10

Weather was on our side. Amazing views, clear day, the hike itself is not too trying so you still have some energy at the end of the day. Must do.

Bruno's avatar

Bruno

Brazil

Ranking: 10/10

Amazing mountain in New Zealand. Hard walking for amazing views.

Nathalie Vanlaek's avatar

Nathalie Vanlaek

Belgium

Ranking: 10/10

Was a nice walk! Amazing view of the volcanic area.

Similar to…

RuapehuTongariro / National Park Village

Top of the world......  - Tama Lakes

Tama Lakes track - Whakapapa Village

RuapehuTongariro / National Park Village

Close up of Silica Rapids

Silica Rapids track - Whakapapa Village

RuapehuTongariro / National Park Village

Taranaki Falls in all thier glory

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Central Crater - Northern Circuit

Tongariro Northern Circuit

RuapehuTongariro / National Park Village

Tawhai Falls, full frontal

Tawhai Falls walk - Whakapapa Village

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Meads Wall, Mt Ruapehu

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Start of the Old Coach Road

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View of the lava flow from Lake Surprise Track.

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View of Falls from the lookout

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