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Great Walks bookings open this week

Media release

11 June 2019

Great Walks bookings open this week

Great Walks 2019/20 bookings open over several days this week, starting with Heaphy and Milford tracks today. This includes bookings for the new Paparoa Track.

“New Zealand’s 10th Great Walk, the stunning Paparoa Track, opens on 1 December 2019. The Paparoa Track has been designed to be used by both mountain bikers and walkers and you can secure your place on this brand-new experience from Wednesday this week,” says Department of Conservation (DOC) Heritage and Visitors Director Steve Taylor.

The Great Walks are premium multi-day tramps (and one canoe journey) that showcase the best of New Zealand’s landscapes, and natural and cultural values. The walks are well-formed and have a higher standard of tracks and facilities.

International visitor growth and promotion of the Great Walks through DOC’s partnership with Air New Zealand has led to Great Walk bookings greatly increasing since 2012.

“It’s fantastic to see the growing popularity of the Great Walks,” says Steve Taylor.

“We can manage this growth, protect the surrounding environments and maintain a quality experience for visitors, as hut and camp spaces are limited. This means it can be difficult for individuals and groups to secure bookings over peak times on the most popular walks. DOC is working to address this through expanding the Great Walks network and investigating the use of pricing as a tool to manage visitor growth.”

When compared to the previous summer walking season (October to April), overall DOC-managed Great Walks bed nights are down 5% this season. With a differential pricing trial in place on four of the Great Walks, there has been an increase in walkers who are ordinarily resident in New Zealand (up 27 % on last year) and their children (up 13 %). Revenue is also up 38 % and more people are undertaking some of the quieter walks such as Heaphy (up 11%) and Rakiura (up 8%) tracks.

Sign up or check prices and when bookings open for each Great Walk by visiting


Great Walks 2019/20 bookings opening dates:
• Tuesday 11 June 2019, 9.30 am
o Milford Track
o Heaphy Track
• Wednesday 12 June 2019, 9.30 am
o Routeburn Track
o Paparoa Track
• Thursday 13 June 2019, 9.30 am
o Abel Tasman Coast Track
o Kepler Track
o Tongariro Northern Circuit
• Friday 14 June 2019, 9.30 am
o Rakiura Track
o Lake Waikaremoana Track
o Whanganui River Journey

Further information

Great Walks 2018/19 summer season data (PDF, 7,570K)

• Paparoa Track video (version for use before Wednesday 12 June)

• Paparoa Track video (version for use from Wednesday 12 June)

Great Walks visitor numbers 2012/13 to 2017/18 table

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