One of the most sought after mountainous national parks in the world is a fine medley of alpine lakes, river valleys, glaciers, and towering mountain peaks. Its dramatic landscapes make it a hiker’s haven. The melody of birds, the sound of the waterfalls, dainty flowering herbs, and beautifully hued rock forms cast a spell on the visitors. The Park, which is a magnet for mountaineers, extends from the Haast River towards the north to the Humbolt Mountains. Mount Aspiring National Park is a part of Te Wahipounamu – a World Heritage Site.
The National Park was established in 1964. It is governed by the Department of Conservation of the Government of New Zealand.
Activities in Mount Aspiring National Park
Jet Boating – The Dart, the Wilkin, and the Matukituki River are some of the rivers that flow through the Park. They are best explored by jet boat.
Heli-skiing – Exceptional heli-skiing opportunities await you in Albertburn and the Northern Buchanans.
Tramping and Walking – The Routeburn Track, which runs between Lake Wakatipu and the Te Anau-Milford Road, calls for a three-day walk. The Aspiring Hut walk and the Rob Roy track are preferred short hikes that can be completed within an hour or two. The National Park also has tramping tracks such as Gillespie Pass Circuit and Rees-Dart Circuit.
Mountaineering – There’s always something for the mountaineers who can look forward to scale heights. The ascent from Mt. Awful to Mt. Aspiring is thrilling.
Bird & Wildlife Watching – You ought to explore the local fauna including Red Deer, Chamois, Trout, Native Bat, Bellbird, Rifleman, South Island Robin, and Yellow-crowned Parakeet.
Snow Park, Roys Peak, Warbirds & Wheels, Snow Farm, Treble Cone, Puzzling World, Lake Wanaka, Rippon Vineyard, National Transport & Toy Museum, and Pisa Conservation Area.
Where is Mount Aspiring National Park?
It is situated in Southern Alps of the South Island in New Zealand. It is located between Otago and south Westland and north of the Fiordland National Park.
Location Map of Mount Aspiring National Park
How to Reach?
By Air – The airport in Wanaka is the nearest to the National Park. It takes little more than an hour to drive to the Park. The Alpine Coachline bus services shuttles between the destination and the airport. The Wanaka Taxi service also takes care of the journey to and from the airport. The Dunedin International Airport is the main international gateway to the Park.
There are a number of semi-luxurious hotels such as Oakridge Resort Lake Wanaka, Websters on Wanaka Lodge, Grand Murcure, Wyndham Vacation Resorts Wanaka, Alpine Motel, Wanaka View Motel, and Bella Vista Motel.
For those looking for mid-range accommodations, Manuka Crescent Motel, Aspiring Lodge Motel, and Lakeview Motel are good options. Mountain View Backpackers, Altamont Lodge, Apollo Lodge, and Apartments, and Aspiring Holiday Park & Motels are budget accommodations in the vicinity.
You will have plenty of options to choose from as far as delicious food is concerned. Bistro Gentil is the best place to eat French and Francesca’s Italian Kitchen bring in the best from Italy. While Spice Room serves spicy Indian delicacies, The Landing introduces you to sumptuous local dishes.
Best time to visit
Winter is the season of stormy winds, snowfall, and extreme cold. So, it is advisable to visit the National Park during summers when weather is quite pleasant. Summer lasts from December to March.
Things to Remember
- It is recommended to undertake walks between November and March.
- The Park is home to Kea – mountain parrot that often takes interest in visitors’ backpacks.
- It’s wise to consult the Department of Conservation before going on longer walks.
- Be prepared for a sudden drop and rise in temperature.
- The Matukituki Valley is the only place that can be safely explored throughout the year.
- During the peak season (November to April) – 8 am to 5 pm
- During the off-season (May to October)
- Monday to Friday : 8.30 am to 4.30 pm
- Saturday : 9.30 am to 4 pm
Facts about Mount Aspiring National Park
- The total area covered by the Mount Aspiring National Park is 3,555 sq. km.
- It is the third largest national park in New Zealand.
- It has over 400 species of moths and butterflies and around 59 bird species.
- The Park receives an annual average rainfall of 3500 cm.
- The peak of Mount Aspiring is at a height of 3,033 meters (9951 ft.) above sea level.
- Arthur’s Pass National Park
- Aoraki / Mount Cook National Park
- Abel Tasman National Park
- Paparoa National Park
- Nelson Lakes National Park
- Fiordland National Park
- Egmont National Park
- Tongariro National Park