Gear up for four seasons of adventure in Ohakune, a lively town set in the foothills of Ruapehu Mountain. It offers world-class ski slopes, scenic mountain biking trails and riverside walks, as well as a lively apres-ski culture.
Things to do in Ohakune
In winter, the Turoa Ski Area lures skiers and snowboarders in from across the globe. It's set on the volcanic slopes of Mount Ruapehu and boasts some of New Zealand's longest and most challenging runs. If you're not into snow sports, ride the Turoa Parklane Chairlift to the Snowflake Café, which commands magnificent mountain views.
Winding through Whanganui National Park, the Old Coach Road mountain-bike trail showcases the North Island's rugged natural beauty. Along the way you'll pass through lush old-growth forests, dramatic volcanic scenery and the 300-metre-long Old Hapuawhenua Viaduct. Don't forget to stop at the information panels that recall the road's colourful history.
Stretch your legs on the Mangawhero River Walkway, a two-kilometre waterfront trail lined with leafy beech trees. You can enjoy stunning views of the mountains and surrounding countryside on a romantic stroll.
Ohakune boasts one of New Zealand's most exciting apres-ski scenes, with a smorgasbord of bars and restaurants. After a day of skiing, head to Blind Finch for enormous burgers, craft beer and live music. Enjoy upmarket dining and seasonal ingredients at Cyprus Tree or hit up the infamous Powderkeg for dancing and DJs.
Getting around Ohakune
Downtown Ohakune is easy to get around on foot or by using local buses. A rental car is best for exploring Ohakune and the Tongariro National Park region. Buses run to Ohakune from Taupo and Auckland or you can ride the Northern Explorer train operated by KiwiRail Scenic.