Tongariro National Park Travel Answers

change location

Visiting Tongariro National Park with a 9 Year Old

by cherry3736 Online Now Feb 10, 2011 at 6:05 PM

Hi,

My husband and I will bring our daughter to visit NZ in mid April. We will stay in Whakapapa Village for one night (arrive around dinner time). Our plan is to spend 3 hours in Tongariro next morning. Then we have to drive to Wellington to take the ferry at 4:30. Are there any kid-friendly activities in the park? I saw the recommendation of the chairlifting before. Souds like a good idea. But how long will that take? Will we be able to make the way back within 3 hours? We can not miss the ferry for sure.
Also, can anybody give us some advise on the plan - will we have enought time to accomplish both goals? Thanks very much!

Quote & Answer
4 Answers
  • Kakapo2's Profile Photo

    Re: Visiting Tongariro National Park with a 9 Year Old

    by Kakapo2 Online Now Feb 11, 2011 at 2:38 PM

    I have already written in your other post that it is risky to start at 11am only, in particular when you stay at Whakapapa Village.

    The chairlift itself is amazing as on a clear day you get splendid views. But it only starts operating at 9am. So you would only have 2 hours until your (too late) departure. It surely is possible to do this chairlift ride in a hurry. You have to be lucky to be there on a clear day though, and April can have very changing weather patterns - which BTW is common throughout the year in such alpine surroundings.

    I think the chairlift ride would be about the only thing in Tongariro National Park for a child in such a limited time, as the NP is all about hiking. The other thing would be the giant carrot in Ohakune - which again is on the other side of Mt. Ruapehu and would be another detour, so not really realistic.

    Be the first to rate this answer!

    Was this helpful? Quote & Answer
  • Re: Visiting Tongariro National Park with a 9 Year Old

    by cherry3736 Online Now Feb 11, 2011 at 7:15 PM

    Is it possible to do some driving by ourself and get somewhere with nice view? Base on your advice, we will change our schedule to get to Whakapapa Village the day before our trip to Wellington. Thank you very much!

    Be the first to rate this answer!

    Was this helpful? Quote & Answer
  • Kakapo2's Profile Photo

    Re: Visiting Tongariro National Park with a 9 Year Old

    by Kakapo2 Online Now Feb 12, 2011 at 8:27 PM

    The drive from the township of National Park to Whakapapa Village is already spectacular. You see Mt. Ruapehu to the right side of the road and the cone of Mt. Ngauruhoe to the left, the highcountry plain covered in flax and low shrubs. On a nice day and days with dramatic clouds this is very scenic.

    I suppose you travel to Tongariro National Park from the north, as you are headed for Wellington. So great views... definitely from the northern shore of Lake Taupo (Taupo township) you can have a great view of the volcanoes at the distance - of course only on a nice and clear day. (It took me three trips until I finally got this view...)

    If you visit Rotorua you can take the gondola up to Mt. Ngongotaha for a good view. And in Auckland from the Sky Tower and from Mt. Eden, also One Tree Hill, and further west from the Arataki Visitor Centre in the Waitakere Ranges. If you travel to the Coromandel Peninsula, the most fantastic view is from Paku Hill above the township of Tairua.

    Definitely a lot more mountains in the South Island for spectacular views.

    Be the first to rate this answer!

    Was this helpful? Quote & Answer
  • Re: Visiting Tongariro National Park with a 9 Year Old

    by cherry3736 Online Now Feb 15, 2011 at 5:50 AM

    Thanks!

    We definitely will check out gondola trip up to Mt. Ngongotaha. That sounds great. Yes, we will drive, drive, and drive. After this vacation, we will be very good at driving on the other side of the road and enjoying scenary at the same time - what a great multi-tasking training!

    We appreciate your generous information!

    Be the first to rate this answer!

    Was this helpful? Quote & Answer
Your Answer
Advanced Editor View Guidelines

Near Tongariro National Park