While New Zealand is proud of its nine ‘Great Walks’, the country also provides a huge range of short walks that can be done in a day.
These hikes, or tramps as they are called in New Zealand, provide clean air and stunning scenery, without the need for lugging around heavy packs and cooking gear.
Travel site lonelyplanet.com produced their list of favourite scenic day hikes:
Top 10 scenic day hikes in New Zealand
1. Twilight –Te Werahi Loop, Far North
Five-hour loop through coastal forest and beaches.
2. Rangitoto Island Loop, Hauraki Gulf, Auckland
A short ferry ride from downtown Auckland, a chance to explore the city’s largest volcanic cone.
3. Coromandel Walkway, Coromandel Peninsula
10km track around the rugged tip of the Coromandel Peninsula.
4. Tongariro Alpine Crossing
20km walk requiring a full day but a chance to enjoy the volcanic scenery immortalised in the Lord of the Rings movie trilogy.
5. Medlands Beach to Anchorage, Abel Tasman National Park
11km walk across beaches, through forests and requires a boat cruise to get there.
6. Mt Robert Circuit, Nelson Lakes National Park
Takes up to five hours to walk the incline to Mt Robert and enjoy views of lakes and mountains.
7. Sealy Tarns, Aoraki/Mt Cook National Park
Plenty of day hikes in this park with Sealy Tarns the pick with mountain views and scenery of the Hooker Valley.
8. Avalanche Peak, Arthur’s Pass National Park
Mountain views but the 1100m ascent to the summit should only be undertaken by experienced hikers.
9. Charming Creek Walkway, West Coast
A six-hour tramp that follows a disused railway line through the Ngakawau River Gorge.
10. Key Summit, Fiordland
Three-hour taste of the Routeburn Track, one of the Great Walks, with panoramic views of mountains, valleys and waterfalls.
Source: Lonely Planet