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“A Wonderful Experience” 5 of 5 bubbles
Review of Routeburn Track

Routeburn Track
Book In Advance
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$223.45*
and up
Routeburn Track Private Guided Walk from Queenstown
Ranked #3 of 42 things to do in Te Anau
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: More than 3 hours
Owner description: Great Walks season is October - April (see website for exact dates). Outside this period facilities are greatly reduced and there are additional safety hazards to consider. Always check the website for changes that might affect your trip. See website for the price of accommodation on this track.
Bordeaux, France
Level Contributor
80 reviews
34 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 27 helpful votes
“A Wonderful Experience”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 7, 2014 via mobile

My wife and I walked the RB track in November. Great group. Well catered for in tremendous chalets. A great experience to follow the Milford track.

Visited November 2013
Helpful?
2 Thank Ian G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Verona, Wisconsin
Level Contributor
39 reviews
19 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 78 helpful votes
“Perfect addition to any hiker's southern NZ itinerary”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 7, 2014

My wife and I hiked the track from the Routeburn Shelter to the Divide in 3 days, 2 nights. We stayed in the Routeburn Falls Hut the first night. The hike to it was fairly short and not too difficult (though level of incline does increase when you reach the Routeburn Flats camp area). The combination of open meadows at the start and the dramatic, mountain-enclosed valley from the deck of the Hut made this part of the hike particularly enjoyable.

My wife and I prefer the sleeping privacy of our tent, but stopping day 1 at the Routeburn Flats (no campsites at the Falls) campground made the daily mileage disproportionate. Consequently, we reserved bunks at the Falls. I was really impressed by the quality of the facilities. The kitchen area was warm and accommodating. The bunks were clean and well-kept. I don't think my opinion of sleeping in bunks has changed, but I commend the DOC of NZ for constructing first class hut facilities.

Day 2 was rainy and cold, which put a damper on the hike to Lake Mackenzie. It snowed the night before, making the views of the mountains going up to Harris Saddle particularly beautiful. The views from the emergency shelter at Harris Saddle were obstructed by the fog until we descended to the Lake Mackenzie campground. We stayed in our tent at Lake Mackenzie campground. The outdoor kitchen was really nice. It had running water, sinks, and lots of counter space. My wife was not pleased with the toilets, but they seemed pretty standard for back country toilets. The warden was really nice, really helpful.

We left early to catch our 11am shuttle out. If the weather is clear, I highly recommend leaving early as the views of the mountains adjacent to the trail at sunrise are incredible. The DOC left several large rock piles in the middle of the track, which was annoying. But I suppose that is the price you occasionally pay for an otherwise well-kept track.

The Routeburn isn't particularly long, especially done over 3 days (could easily be done in 2 days). But I wouldn't call it easy. The track between Routeburn Falls and Lake Mackenzie is filled with rocks and exposed branches, which demands your attention to negotiate the terrain safely. It's a very manageable track for those new two multi-day hikes, but do pack dry clothing and come prepared to be challenged at times.

Given that the track is so well-marked and the huts/campsites are so well-kept, I do not recommend booking through a private company. While the private huts looked really nice, the value added from nicer lodgings and meal preparation does not seem worth the extra cost, especially since both take away from your NZ back country experience.

Visited April 2014
Helpful?
10 Thank UWShaun
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Singapore, Singapore
Level Contributor
26 reviews
10 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
“Lovely scenery, great facilities”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 5, 2014

8 of us (yea, we were a large group) did the track over 3D2N starting from the shelter and ending at the Divide.

I am firstly very impressed with the DOC facilities. I have roughed it in SE Asia, so I was extremely surprised and happy to see that the toilets at the huts were stocked with toilet paper and were really clean. Even the toilets along the track were clean (yes, toilets along the track! I was blown away).

They provide mattresses at the huts and there is a fireplace type of heating at the common area in the huts. During peak season, there is a hut warden on duty and they will provide useful information on the weather and also some recommendations for attractions near Te Anau and Queenstown.

The track is fairly easy, it does rain very often (or so I am told - it rained 2/3 of our trip), but even in the rain, the forest had a mystical quality to it. The only downside is some views will be cloudy/foggy during the rain, but when it was clear - you would feel like you are on the LOTR set.

Do the conical hill (a bit tough when the rocks are icy) and key summit side trails! Beautiful views from both!

Visited April 2014
Helpful?
5 Thank luckywillow
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Singapore, null, Singapore
Level Contributor
106 reviews
59 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 64 helpful votes
“Fantastic Track”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 4, 2014

Did the track over 2 days. Starting from The Divide to Lake Mackenzie Hut for day 1. And finishing the rest of the track on day 2. Took the tracknet shuttle to the starting point. Started off on a wet day so the scenery wasn't that great. The highlight however is between Lake Mackenzie Hut to Routeburn Falls Hut. Conical hill is challenging as it can be icy and very windy (the weather forecast for the day was easterly gales). The track from the divide to Lake Mackenzie Hut was a little challenging as it was very muddy and the rocks have disappeared (works are done to rectify this).

Do go well prepared and with lots of food. Water is drinkable at the huts. Bring a sleeping bag. Carry your trash down the track.

Visited April 2014
Helpful?
2 Thank Xunliang_Lin
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Blenheim, New Zealand
Level Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“Easyhike”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 4, 2014

When you are organising a group of trampers in such an idilic place in New Zealand and have to travel a long way to get there is was pleasing to find a company such as Easyhike to collect our car at one end and have it waiting for us at the other. The process is so easy and secure and means we had the freedom to start our tramp on the Routeburn at our leasure and arrive at the other end without the fear of missing a bus. Because we had this freedom and started at the Divide end, we were able to drive to the Homer tunnel before our tramp to see it and drive through it. A bonus.
The tramp itself is fantastic and the weekend we went (April 12th & 13th) was the only place in NZ where is wasn't raining. Our group of work colleagues tramps every year at this time and The Routeburn has been one of our highlights.

Visited April 2014
Helpful?
Thank pmortimer
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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