Regarded as one of Tongariro National Park’s best short walks, this easy loop is packed with fascinating natural sights including Taranaki Falls themselves which tumble 20 metres into a boulder-ringed pool.

The upper and lower tracks form a loop with the falls around the halfway mark.

The lower track passes through tussock, alpine shrublands, and beech forest where you may spot native birds. After a while it meets the Wairere Stream and climbs past Cascade Falls before Taranaki Falls come into view.

The falls tumble over an ancient lava flow formed by the Ruapehu eruption of 15,000 years ago.

From the falls, the track climbs through forest to join the Tama Lakes Track, crossing interesting old lava flows as it goes. As it meanders back to Whakapapa it passes through tussock and manuka as it crosses a series of eroded gullies.

From below the falls there are spectacular views into the water-worn gorges of the Wairere Stream. 

Distance: 5.3km
Time needed: approximately 2hours
Route: round trip
Difficulty rating: easy (grade 3)

The walk to Taranaki Falls in the UNESCO dual World Heritage Tongariro National Park, begins just below the  Whakapapa Visitor Centre at Ngauruhoe Place – just a short stroll from Skotel Alpine Resort!

Tongariro National park was formed in 1894. The park is made up of 78.618 hectares. Call into the Whakpapa Visitors centre it is open 7 days a week, for weather updates and to watch the audiovisual presentation.

There’s no facilities or drinking water on the track. It’s suggested to go well prepared with

  • Water and wind-proof clothing (jacket and overtrousers)
  • Warm layers (wool or polypropylene)
  • Sturdy comfortable shoes or boots
  • Food and plenty of water
  • Sunglasses and sunscreen
  • First aid kit

Book your Ruapehu Accommodation with us here at Skotel Alpine Resort, New Zealand’s highest hotel. Offering guests a variety of room types, from backpacker rooms, to view rooms of the Park and the volcanic mountain peaks of Ngauruhoe, Tongariro and Ruapehu.