The Taranaki Falls walk at Mt Ruapehu is an easy 5.3 km walk which will take you around 2 hours. The Taranaki water fall is pretty spectacular and makes for a great day out in National Park. On a clear day you can see the National Park township and main road to Taupo.
In the map above, if you zoom in on the walk, you’ll see all the following track points and their location. Each point has photos along with a description about each one.
Drive past the Chateau and take the next turn to the left onto Ngauruhoe Place. Drive to the end of the road. A five minute drive all up. There is an information board for you to read before you get under way.
This was the Waihohonu horse track many years ago. The walk starts with red tussock grass and small patches of manuka. Then you walk into alpine shrub. The track is a very comfortable uphill walk to the falls with four small gullies to cross. In a couple of places it can be a bit sticky. For the amount of traffic on this track I would expect a lot better from DOC. What a swanky foot bridge. What were they thinking? I hope it does not fall down before they finish up grading the track.
Just around the corner you can look back and just see the grand Chateau, be careful they might be watching you? On a clear day you would be able to see out to the National Park township and the main road to Taupo.
1 Hour. Oh no another swanky bridge, this is the Wairere Stream. Take a short walk around the lava flow its quite interesting. Don’t fall over the edge. Walk up to the marker post on the other side of the bridge.
From the marker post, turn left and hop down the mirrored of steeps to the falls. On the way down take a breather and sit down on the seat provided. There are more tables and seats provided at the bottom, the only catch is, you might get wet from the spray off the falls. If you have a plastic bag with you, rap the camera up nice and tight and walk under the falls and take a photo.
The walk back is probably the best section of the walk. The beech forest is full of shiny broadleaf, mountain five fingers, ferns and the mighty Toatoa. Native birds are also in abundance. Cascade falls is only 5 minutes down river from the falls once across the bridge it is plain sailing.
You will come across a turn off to the right; this track goes out to Mangatepopo Hut. An extremely rough track. Just walk out on to the bridge for a view of the river. You are half way now.
Two gully’s to negotiate, then on to an open flat of red tussock grass, when you approach to the chalets, the car park is 30m over to the left, you can cut through the buildings.
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