On this edition of Kiwi Tripsters, escape to Ruapehu this winter. We celebrate this living landscape of ancient rainforests, active volcanoes, snow-cloaked mountains, evocative rivers of mystical tranquillity and two national parks. From Blue Duck Station and the Bridge to Nowhere, to a riding the Sky Waka, we warmly embrace the greater outdoors in Ruapehu. www.visitruapehu.com
Great adventures in the Whanganui River Valley. The storied Whanganui River is a boundary-buster, carving its way through multiple territorial districts, after beginning life as a n alpine spring on the slopes of Mt. Tongaririo. We highlight some amazing accommodation, the incredible history of the valley, take a jet boat ride with Whanganui River Adventures and savour the Bridge to Nowhere in the valley of broken dreams.
Mountainside in Ruapehu. As the mercury falls, Ruapehu is powering up for its seasonal makeover as a winter wonderland, with world-classing skiing at Whakapapa and Tūroa. We check out the ski areas, plus take a ride on the epic Sky Waka Gondola, New Zealand’s longest alpine ride. And mike tries his hand at quad biking in Ruapehu.
An unrivalled experience is to take a jaunt into the heartland of the Retaruke Valley. Blue Duck Station rises up from the banks of the Wanganui and Retaruke Rivers, surrounded by Whanganui National Park. A high country station that is so wild, so immense and wondrous, you will feel like you have entered a kingdom unto itself. Mike talks to the boss of Blue Duck, Dan Steele.
Après ski in Ohakune. The charismatic mountain town, at the base of Ruapehu, is a tailormade hub for winter holiday magic. We check out the best places to go for apres fun, the top spots to stay at, and ogle over Johnny Nation’s Chocolate Eclairs.