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Tongariro National Park

Explore New Zealand’s phenomenal volcanic landscape and trek across one of the best known hiking trails in the country.

Enjoy outdoor adventures and superlative scenery when you explore Tongariro National Park. Go hiking, mountain biking, skiing and whitewater rafting in a wilderness that encompasses waterfalls, lakes, rivers and three active volcanoes.

The three volcanoes in Tongariro National Park were gifted to the country in 1887 by Te Heuheu, Chief of the Ngati Tuwharetoa Maori tribe. New Zealand’s oldest national park is also a dual World Heritage area for its importance to Maori culture and the magnificent volcanic features.

There are many hiking and mountain bike trails throughout the park, from gentle outings to more challenging routes. Take one of the volcanic walks on Mount Ruapehu, which was used as a filming location for the Lord of the Rings trilogy. Trek through the countryside and stay overnight in a serviced backcountry hut or in a village lodge. A popular route is the Tongariro Alpine Crossing. This 1-day hike encompasses barren mountains with volcanic craters, lava flows and emerald-green lakes.

Take part in some activities on the water. Kayak along the Whakapapa River through Tongariro Forest. There is also a 3-day canoe trip along the waterway. Go whitewater rafting in the Whanganui River. When the snow comes in the winter, head for the slopes of the Whakapapa Ski Area on Mount Ruapehu. Here you can ski, snowboard and go tobogganing.

Away from the outstanding scenery, Tongariro National Park also has some cultural sites that are well worth exploring. Stop by the 1923 glacier hut, which today houses a skiing museum. See Kaikawaka Villa, a bushman's hut from the 1930s and visit the Tongariro Chateau, a Georgian mansion.

Tongariro National Park is in the central part of North Island, about a 4- to 5-hour drive from Auckland or Wellington. It is also accessible by railway from both these places. Trains stop at the National Park Village which borders the expansive wilderness. It is open throughout the year and there is no entry fee.

Popular Activities at Tongariro National Park

Make the most of your visit to Tongariro National Park. Here's a list of the most popular activities:

Want to make your visit a little more unique? A Scenic Tongariro Alpine Crossing Adventure and a Tongariro Grade 3 White Water Rafting Adventure are both worth considering.

Check out our Manawatu - Wanganui things to do page to discover many more activities while you're in the area.

*Savings based on all vacation package bookings with Flight + Hotel on Expedia.ca from January through December 2019, as compared to price of the same components booked separately. Savings will vary based on origin/destination, length of trip, stay dates and selected travel supplier(s). Savings not available on all packages.


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Best Lodging Options Near Tongariro National Park

See all 399 properties in Tongariro National Park
Skotel Alpine Resort CA $66
Reviewed on Dec. 7, 2019
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Skotel Alpine Resort

Skotel Alpine Resort

Whakapapa Village, SH 48, Nagauruhoe Place Mt Ruapehu, Tongariro National Park
     
    4.0 of 5
    3.5 out of 5.0 Stars

    Highly recommend, very friendly staff, great food and comfy beds!

    Chateau Tongariro Hotel CA $159
    Reviewed on Nov. 12, 2019
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    Chateau Tongariro Hotel

    Chateau Tongariro Hotel

    State Highway 48, Mt Ruapehu, Tongariro National Park
       
      4.3 of 5
      4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

      Charming, historic property. Friendly, helpful staff. Small TVs with very limited channel choices. If you’re tall, don’t get a family room in a 3rd floor dormer room; ceiling quite low.

      The Park Hotel Ruapehu CA $86
      Reviewed on Nov. 24, 2019
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      The Park Hotel Ruapehu

      The Park Hotel Ruapehu

      6 Millar Street, Tongariro National Park, National Park Village
         
        3.9 of 5
        2.5 out of 5.0 Stars

        bathroom to small ..................................................

        Adventure Lodge & Motel CA $72
        Reviewed on Dec. 6, 2019
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        Adventure Lodge & Motel

        Adventure Lodge & Motel

        21 Carroll Street, National Park Village
           
          4.2 of 5
          3.5 out of 5.0 Stars

          Fantastic place to stay while visiting Tongariro National Park. Gill and her husband (who run the place), and Tess were all super friendly, helpful with planning our walk on the crossing. They are well aware of the weather conditions and have great alternatives if you wish to check out something ...

          Pipers Lodge CA $60
          Reviewed on Sep. 14, 2019
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          Pipers Lodge

          Pipers Lodge

          18 Millar Street, National Park, National Park Village
             
            4.2 of 5
            3.0 out of 5.0 Stars

            It’s a lodge so don’t expect it to be similar to hotels

            Plateau Lodge CA $68
            Reviewed on Sep. 18, 2019
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            Plateau Lodge

            Plateau Lodge

            17 Carroll Street, National Park Village
               
              4.3 of 5
              3.0 out of 5.0 Stars

              very well presented breakfast which was an optional add on for $17 - served in our room

              Tongariro Crossing Lodge CA $146
              Reviewed on Nov. 19, 2019
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              Tongariro Crossing Lodge

              Tongariro Crossing Lodge

              27 Carroll Street, National Park Village, Tongariro
                 
                4.8 of 5
                3.5 out of 5.0 Stars

                The washing machine, dryer and drying room were really useful after our very wet day’s walking. Louis was very helpful with advice when our transit to the crossing was cancelled. Breakfast was great too.

                Mountain Heights Lodge CA $102
                Reviewed on Dec. 2, 2019
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                Mountain Heights Lodge

                Mountain Heights Lodge

                4576 SH 4, National Park Village, Manawatu-Wanganui
                   
                  4.8 of 5
                  3.0 out of 5.0 Stars

                  Situated about 2 km South of National Park on SH4, it provides a quiet location with only light traffic overnight. Close to the Tongariro Crossing

                  Top things to do in Tongariro National Park

                  See all 27 things to do in Tongariro National Park (and vicinity)