Are you looking for walks through a pristine environment, dramatic coastal settings, and untouched nature? If so, New Zealand is the place for you. This month we've selected three of New Zealand's hotspots that are sure to please even the most arduous hikers.
In a country known for its untouched nature, "tramping" is the national pastime; and what a "tramp" this is. The Grand Traverse is comprised of the 24-mile Routeburn Track and the 25 mile Greenstone Valley Walk. This six-day walking adventure, cuts through Mount Aspiring National Park, and Fiordland National Park. The trek is not strenuous and provides stunning views of abundant forests, mountain streams, lakes, and waterfalls. Guided tours are available and solo hikers must register with local authorities.
Rotorua is located 135 miles southeast of Auckland in the center of the Taupo Volcanic Plateau. Since the 1840s visitors have flocked to the area to witness its sometimes frightening natural wonders. Here you'll find the unpredictable Pohutu Geyser, which sprays up to 100 feet in the air. After viewing the geyser, check in to the Solitaire Lodge, one of New Zealand's most beautifully sited hotels that overlook the rainbow trout filled Lake Tarawera and the now extinct Tarawera Volcano.
Some say Doubtful Sound is the most beautiful fjord in all of New Zealand maybe even the world. Discovered by Sam Cook, who wasn't sure the waters were a sound, hence the name, is one of the world's most remote and magical places. Located in Fiordland National Park, you must arrive by boat. Once there you will be surrounded by mystery, mist, and intrigue.