Activities in Mount Aspiring National Park

Tracks and walks

Tramper near Gillespie Pass.  Photo: A.Smith.
Tramper near Gillespie Pass

Short walks abound and are usually concentrated at the access roadends at the Matukituki Valley and Glenorchy. Short walks along the Haast Pass highway on SH6 have the easiest access to the flora and fauna in the park. The Routeburn is one of many excellent tramping tracks.

The Rees-Dart river circuit, Gillespie Pass circuit, Greenstone and Caples tracks and the Wilkin Valley are wonderful valley walks, with options to continue over higher passes and into alpine areas. In summer these tracks are suitable for people of average fitness and experience. The West Matukituki Valley hosts a choice of huts boasting exceptional views.

In winter many tracks are impassable or require alpine skills. It is possible to take a guided walk on the Gillespie Pass, Routeburn and Greenstone Tracks.

Snow activities/climbing

Most of the park's alpine areas lie over the Southern Alps. Glacier and high alpine adventures are popular but suitable only for experienced trampers/mountaineers with the appropriate equipment. Mountaineering, ski touring, ice climbing, rock climbing and abseiling are possible within the area.

Adventure activities: Jet boating

Jetboat trips can be enjoyed on a number of the park's larger rivers such as the Dart and the Wilkin.

Scenic flights

Aerial sightseeing by helicopter or fixed-wing plane is available from Haast, Makarora, Wanaka, Queenstown and Glenorchy.

Specialist activities: Photography

Parts of the park are easily accessible by vehicle from State Highway 6 and offer easier opportunities for the photography of flora and fauna.

Scenic and nature tours

Those wishing to venture further into the park can enjoy vast variety of terrain and landscapes. Siberia Valley hosts a range of landscapes; an alpine herb field on the Crucible Lake day walk from Siberia Hut and dramatic alpine vistas of Mount Dreadful and Mount Awful from the Siberia Valley and Gillespie Pass Circuit are recommended. Siberia Valley is accessible on foot and by aircraft from the township of Makarora on State Highway 6. From the township of Glenorchy, near Queenstown, it's possible to view stunning vistas from the road or on foot for those wishing to explore further afield.

Guided activities

Guided expeditions into the park have expanded to tramping, mountaineering, hunting, fishing, canyoning, kayaking, canoeing, jetboating, eco-tours, scenic landings and ski touring.

Child/family friendly activities

Kiwi Ranger Programme

The Kiwi Ranger Programme is a free, fun and interactive way to get to know this special place. There are activities for young and old alike, and a badge is awarded on completion. More about Kiwi Ranger.

Related links

back to top


Find out more



Safety information

Always contact the nearest visitor centre for the latest information about facilities and conditions.

Alerts for Mount Aspiring National Park


Central Otago Office
Phone:      +64 3 443 7660
Full office details
Awarua / Haast Visitor Centre
Phone:      +64 3 750 0809
Address:   Haast Junction
Corner SH6 and Jackson Bay Road
South Westland
Full office details
Makarora Visitor Centre
Phone:      +64 3 443 8365
Address:   Haast Pass Highway
State Hwy 6
Full office details
Whakatipu-wai-Māori / Queenstown Visitor Centre
Phone:      +64 3 442 7935
Address:   50 Stanley Street
Full office details