Snow Day Out for Non-Skiers

The perfect Alpine Day doesn't have to involve hurtling down a snowy mountain at break-neck speeds with a skimpy piece of wood attached to your feet. You can have a magical alpine day out without any fear of injury or cold snow down your back

Road trip to Whakapapa

The stretch of State Highway 1 from Taupo to Turangi must be one of the most scenic drives in New Zealand. On one side the road hugs the shores of Lake Taupo, on the other forestry and native bush. The photo stops and picnic spots are endless. Lake Taupo is New Zealand and Australasia's largest freshwater lake. It is one of the cleanest lakes in the world. You will find the vast expanse of crystal clear water mesmerising.

From Turangi, you start to weave uphill towards the Tongariro National Park. This National Park has Dual World Heritage status for its natural beauty and cultural significance. It is easy to see why the local Maori hold the majestic mountains, Tongairo, Ruapehu and Ngauruhoe as sacred. With winter snowfall covering their peaks, they are a truly awe-inspiring sight.

Whakapapa Ski Area

Breathe in that fresh mountain air and soak in the winter snow vibes! Whakapapa Ski Area is New Zealand’s largest commercial ski area. Watch the skiers and snowboarders show off their moves and enjoy the fresh crunch of snow under your feet.

Scenic Chairlift Ride

Situated at 2,020m above sea level, Whakapapa Ski Area's Knoll Ridge Cafe is New Zealand’s highest cafe. Here you will find great coffee, gourmet fare and incredible views overlooking the Pinnacles and out over the Central Plateau of New Zealand's North Island. Find out more about the Knoll Ridge Cafe here.

Play in Happy Valley

Throw a snowball, build a snowman or try tobogganing in Happy Valley, New Zealand's largest beginner ski and snow play area. Or just watch some other people at it! 

Chateau Tongariro

Wind your way back down the Bruce Road to Whakapapa Village and stop at the iconic Chateau Tongariro. Relax over a high tea, a drink or meal amongst the timeless elegance of Chateau Tongariro.

Located within Whakapapa Village at the base of the ski area, the building was constructed in 1929. The views of the mountains and the Tongariro National Park from the hotel's bars and restaurants are stunning. Find out more about Chateau Tongariro here.

Warm-up in a Hot Pool

Great Lake Taupo is home to many geothermally heated mineral hot pools that can be enjoyed all year round. Tokaanu Thermal Pools is a great swimming spot located in the tranquil thermal village of Tokaanu, just 30 mins from Whakapapa Ski Area. In Taupo, a favourite with both adults and kids are the natural thermal mineral waters of Taupo DeBretts Hot Springs, set amongst native bush. If you’re looking for peace and quiet, head to Wairakei Terraces Hot Pools to take advantage of their adults-only natural thermal springs.

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