Puponga Hilltop Track – Wharariki Beach to Pillar Point Lighthouse

Wharariki Beach from the Puponga Hilltop Track

The Puponga Hilltop Track

With it's golden sandy beaches, magnificent rock stacks and arches, huge sand dunes, stunning clifftop views, and rolling farmland, the Puponga Hilltop Track should be up there on your list of easily-accessible-must-do-day-walks. There are lots of options for walks in the area, ranging from just an hour or so, to a full day. Having had a reasonable leisurely morning, we didn't start walking until 11.30am and managed to cover Wharariki Beach and over half...

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The Moa Park Track to Porter Rock

Looking North over the Moa Park basin

Exploring the Moa Park and Wainui tracks

The Moa Park Track is a beautiful, moderately easy walking track. It skirts Canaan Downs and crosses the Wainui Saddle before climbing to an area called Moa Park; a small sub-alpine basin sitting around 1000m elevation. From Moa Park you can head up a couple of Kms to Porter Rock or around 4Kms further to Castle Rock. On todays adventure we took the Moa Park Track to Porter Rock which is around 5Kms. We enjoyed a leisurely day withy a decent...

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Mount Sunday and Mount Potts – Hakatere Conservation Park

Mount Sunday edoras hakatere ashburton lake

Hakatere Conservation Park and Ashburton Lakes

This beautiful area of Canterbury is situated between the Rakaia and Rangitata rivers, a couple of hours drive inland from Christchurch. I wanted to return and explore the area a little, having walked through it on Te Araroa trail last year.

I drove in on the Ashburton Gorge Road 25Kms out of Mt Somers having van camped overnight in the (very handy Ashburton District Council designated freedom camping area) Bowyers Stream Scenic...

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Isthmus Peak Track

Lake Hawea

Isthmus Peak track

The 16Km (return) day hike up the Isthmus Peak Track rewards you with spectacular views of Lake Hawea and Lake Wanaka. The climb takes you up to 1385m on a well formed, steep track to the peak, via a gorgeous skyline ridge.

The Isthmus Peak track is about a 30 minute drive North out of Wanaka, past Albert town and Hawea, on the SH6.

I stayed at the Kidds Bush reserve DoC campsite last night about 20 minutes drive away to the North. I overslept, so I didn't...

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Ben Lomond Summit – Queenstown

View ben lomond queenstown

Ben Lomond Summit - Queenstown

If you've seen photos showcasing the splendour of Queenstown from above with the town itself, Lake Wakitipu and some impressive looking mountain ranges in the distance - chances are it was taken from Ben Lomond.

Ben Lomond is the big mountain directly behind Queenstown. The summit stands at a height of 1438m. It is usually accessed from town via the Tiki Trail, or by taking the gondola and walking the rest of the way - firstly to the saddle, then...

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Moke Lake Loop Track and Lake Dispute – Queenstown

Moke Lake loop track camp

Moke Lake

Moke Lake is a 20 minutes drive out of Queenstown towards Glenorchy. Heading off the main road up to the right, the initially sealed road becomes unsealed - but at the time of writing it was well graded. Travel through Ben Lomond Station, and a beautiful lake, huge DoC campground and picnic area awaits you at the end. Camping is $13pp per night and there are a couple of sets of decent toilets and a kitchen shelter.

The lake is beautifully clean and clear and is...

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