New Zealand is known for its hikes, locally referred to as “tramps”. Some are arduous (although worthwhile) such as Tongariro Alpine Crossing. Others are shorter, require less preparation, and unless a person is a habitual tripper a rescue helicopter probably won’t be necessary.
There are so many tramps around the National Park area of the North Island and the Taranaki Falls Walk is a winner in the short walks/tramps category.
The track started near the Whakapapa Visitor Centre which means that is was easily accessible. There was also a café or two nearby, and that means we ate ourselves silly after the short walk. I mean… lengthy, calorie-burning tramp.
The Taranaki Falls loop was reasonably short at 6km and only took about 2 hours to complete. It was easy on the thighs but still offered a range of flora and fauna to photograph.
Taranaki Falls was found about halfway through the loop. Quite the magnificent water feature really as the water fell from an old lava flow track into a pool 20 metres below.
The Falls was definitely the highlight of the walk but there were also bubbling streams and extraordinary flora. How it can survive, let alone thrive, in such a harsh area is unbeknown to me.
There was also an exposed section of the track. This was late December, not winter as it appears in the photo. Wind, man, wind and it wasn’t mine.
Taranaki Falls was just one of the many tracks around Whakapapa Village and Tongariro National Park. We got walking, because with views like below, why wouldn’t we?