Intrepid Travel's top five New Zealand hikes in 2022

  • 25/02/2022
Swinging Rope Bridge, Abel Tasman National Park.
Summer isn't over and amazing hiking trails await. Photo credit: Getty Images

For Kiwis keen to explore their own country while international travel is mostly on hold - it's the ideal time to enjoy one of New Zealand's amazing hikes.

It's one of the best ways to take in the great outdoors and an enjoyable way to exercise.

But where are the best places to hike in Aotearoa?

The country's official Great Walks are an ideal place to start, but are definitely not the only hiking adventures one should consider.

To help with inspiration, Intrepid Travel has provided Newshub its top five New Zealand hikes for 2022:

Queenstown Southern Loop

Queenstown is well-known as the adventure capital of New Zealand and hiking the Southern Loop is a great way to truly experience the destination. Travellers will have the opportunity to visit the waters of glacier-carved Fiordland National Park, cross the corner of Otago and cruise across hundreds of cascades and deeply forested Mountains. The South Island is perfect for people who enjoy a good challenge and have a good level of mobility as the hike takes you through varied terrain that leads to unique and exciting locations.

Hiking through the Abel Tasman National Park.
Abel Tasman National Park. Photo credit: Getty Images

Abel Tasman National Park

New Zealand is well known for its rugged mountain tops, crystal clear waters and winding roads and Abel Tasman is the place to find all three. On this hike, travellers will have the opportunity to discover golden-sand beaches, sail past Split Apple Rock and pass the historic Tonga Quarry. The trail includes walking along beaches, so while being a scenic walk, it also requires a moderate level of fitness. 

Queen Charlotte Track

New Zealand's South Island is the place to be when it comes to learning about Māori culture and European history. Journeying through the Queen Charlotte track will allow travellers to visit secluded bays, picturesque coves and native forests. If you book with a travel company, you will also have the benefit of an experienced guide to provide an in-depth dive into New Zealand culture. Some highlights of this location include the beautiful Endeavour Inlet, wandering along the coastline through native bush and connecting with the wildlife this country has to offer.

Wanaka's Rob Roy and Mount Iron tracks

From glaciers to great wine, the Wanaka region has it all. Hikers will experience the dramatic hanging glaciers whilst hiking the towering Rob Roy Peak and unforgettable 360-degree view of the surrounding landscape at the top of Mount Iron. This adventure is perfect for those thriving for adrenaline and trying something new. Additionally, at the end of a long day of physical activity, you can reward yourself with the region's locally produced wines.

Mou Waho Island Hike - one of the best hikes in New Zealand.
Mou Waho Island. Photo credit: New Zealand Trails

Mou Waho Island Hike

Perfect for families on their next South Island family holiday, this island hike is just a water taxi away from the South Island. The predator-free island of Mou Waho is a true natural paradise in Otago. Hikers can embark on short, family friendly, 30-minute hike up to a viewing point where you'll discover an island in a lake in an island in a lake in an island - yes, you read that right. It's the natural equivalent of a babushka doll! Enjoy the views as you tuck into an included picnic lunch. 

"A hiking trip allows travellers to experience New Zealand's scenic landscapes while getting exercise," said Brett Mitchell, Intrepid Travel Managing Director. 

"We have seen a large increase in travellers booking active holidays with travel restrictions easing around the country. With the beautiful New Zealand weather, hiking is the perfect way for Kiwis to get out and explore once again."