The Tongariro Crossing is considered the best one day hike in New Zealand. It is a 19.4km hike that takes you through the area where they filmed Mordor in Lord of the Rings. It’s a mostly easy walk, though there are a few places where the ascent and descent is pretty steep. Moreover, if you have the time to fit them in, you can hike Mount Ngauruhoe (Mount Doom) or Mount Tongariro. I had a beautiful day when I went. Take a look:
Tips for Hiking the Tongariro Crossing
- Buses take you from town around 6:30am and begin to come back from Tongariro at 3 p.m. and cost $50 NZD.
- Take lots of water. There aren’t places to get water until nearer the end and there’s no shade from the sun. You’ll use a lot of water on the trek.
- Take an umbrella. There’s no cover until the end of the trail and the weather changes frequently.
- Plan your time accordingly. Buses stop running at 4:30pm and if you plan to hike up to Mount Ngauruhoe or Mount Tongariro, you’ll need to quicken your pace.
- Walk quickly to Mount Ngauruhoe. This is the first third of the trek with nothing really to see. Getting there quickly gives you more time to see the craters and take the side trails.
- You don’t need hiking shoes to do this walk. I did it in sneakers (running shoes) and was fine. However, flips flops are probably a bad idea given the steep climbs and loose rocks.