Lake Poaka Campsite

Lake Poaka Campsite

Lake Poaka Conservation Area - Overnight Campervan Parking



36 Rankers Reviews

2 Face-to-Face

79 Freedom Camping

8 Twizel




Use this campsite as a base for recreational activities around the Twizel area or as an overnight stay in a picturesque setting.

Turn off SH6 onto the Pukaki Canal Road (take care, this is a gravel road). The access road to the lake is signposted.


Feature Value Info


South IslandMount Cook - MacKenzieTwizel


  • Freedom Camping
  • Free





Showing 13 reviews of 36.

JT's avatar


Ranking: 10/10

nice spot, next to canal and lake, you can go fishing, toilets ok, endless space - all for free!

Reviewed 8 months ago and experienced in January 2019

Chris's avatar


Ranking: 10/10

Nice spot, plenty of space even in summer. We stayed two nights in a tent and had nothing to complain.
Two long drops with toilet paper. Lake is clear and not too bad for a refreshing swim. Easy to find, use Google maps coordinates.
Bring water! 03/19

Reviewed 8 months ago

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Chelle's avatar


Ranking: 9/10

Nice quiet site, once you get to it from the gravel track down to it

Reviewed 9 months ago

Megan Belanger 's avatar

Megan Belanger

Ranking: 10/10

Awesome, beautiful place. Plenty of spots with picnic benches and lake views. No sand flies! The toilet was clean. No running water so bring your own. Walk around the lake was nice and the ducks were friendly. Great location - not too hard to find (maybe in the dark). Really fun times here.

Reviewed 9 months ago

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Henk Sjon's avatar

Henk Sjon


Ranking: 6/10

A free campsite near Lake Tekapo. And thats all there is to it. There is a little off road bit to the campsite and there are a few toilets on the site itself. It is mostly a passing through campsite where people park there car to get an early start the next morning. Dont expect too much out of it. But expect an overcrowded place after 9 PM.

Reviewed 9 months ago and experienced in December 2018

Luqa's avatar


Ranking: 9/10

Good, remote free campsite at the lake with some toilets. Beware mosquitoes. Highly reccomend!

Reviewed 9 months ago

Boris Clémençon's avatar

Boris Clémençon


Ranking: 10/10

Big place With Clean toilets and Lot of lovely family ducks. Perfect ! Thanks new Zealand for this place. We love you !

Reviewed 10 months ago

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Ashton's avatar


Ranking: 8/10

Only downside is that it was difficult to find, especially arriving after dark. You have to drive down a long gravel road along the canal off the highway, but then you are there! Seriously great location right near the mt. Cook visitors center where you can get a cup of coffee and use a nice clean restroom. Right next to a pond so it was lovely and secluded.

Reviewed 10 months ago

Emily's avatar


Ranking: 9/10

Beautiful, lake side campsite. The campsite is very chilled and catches the evening sun up until sunset so is nice and warm. It can get busy during summer, so grab your spot as soon as you can! Trees dot the lakeside so you can pitch up either tent or camper somewhere shaded - the trees were perfect for our hammock. Cute, friendly ducks come and say hi too! Basic long drop toilets are dotted through the campsite, but nothing special. The campsite is free, but there are donation boxes too. A lovely nights stay.

Reviewed 10 months ago

Karo's avatar


Ranking: 8/10

Big campsite right next to a beautiful lake, close to Lake Tekapo and Lake Pukaki. Long drop toilets but no water supply, there are public toilets with water supply only 5min by car.

Reviewed 12 months ago and experienced in October 2018

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Jordan & Jazlyn's avatar

Jordan & Jazlyn

Ranking: 8/10

Freedom camping located between the canal and lake (good for fishing). Toilets only no running water, lots of space for camping.

Reviewed 12 months ago

Sophie Skinner's avatar

Sophie Skinner

United Kingdom

Ranking: 8/10

Ideal for a free spot before visiting Mt Cook. Gravel road is the one on the Mt Cook side of the bridge (we went down the wrong side first time). Road is fine for campers. Lots of space to park, one clean long drop, could get busy in summer but no queues in October.

Reviewed about 1 year ago

Jolanda's avatar


Ranking: 9/10

Quiet place during the night with free stargazing. Roads give some noise in the morning. Great views! If there had been a flush toilet it would be 10/10!

Reviewed about 1 year ago

DOC Managed

Thanks to all the good people working for the NZ Department of Conservation - for all your hard work - making NZ more beautiful, accessable and healthy! Cheers 😍

Nick Morrison's avatar

Nick Morrison

Rankers owner