Tongariro Alpine Crossing

Pilar & me @ Esmerals Lakes

Pilar & me @ Esmerals Lakes

Established in 1887, Tongariro was the first national park in New Zealand and the fourth in the world. It is also a dual World Heritage area, a status which recognises the park’s important Maori cultural and spiritual associations as well as its outstanding volcanic features.It is a place of extremes and surprises, a place to explore and remember. From herb fields to forests, from tranquil lakes to desert-like plateau and active volcanoes – Tongariro has them all.

Mount Ngarahoe

Mount Ngarahoe

The volcanic area’s are very similar to the ones in Lanzarote and the whole area was one of ‘Lord of the Rings’ shooting locations.  This is also the home of the world famous Tongariro Alpine Crossing and one of New Zealand’s 9 Great Walks.  It was a very early morning when we had to leave basecamp for the start of the crossing.  A shuttle brought us to the starting point and we started the walk at 7.15pm and had a fantastic clear day!  After a long walk, some difficult climbs and freezing breezes, we finally arrived at the Esemerald lakes around 12.15pm.  I enjoyed the views of the crystal blue lakes for 2 hours before heading back to base camp.  The world famous Tongariro Alpine Crossing track is an awesome one day adventure, taking you across spectacular and unique volcanic terrain.  We can see a cold mountain spring, old lava flows, active craters and thermal steam vents, not to mention the brilliant emerald and blue Esmerald lakes!  And of course the beautiful native forest to finish.

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