New Zealand has a very popular pastime that most of the family and many tourists can enjoy, we are blessed with some fantastic walks and hiking tracks through out both the North Island and the South Island of New Zealand, some of these walks can be as short as a few hours right up to the multi day walks.
The department of conservation run and maintain most of the main walks in New Zealand our most well known walks are dubbed The Nine Great Walks, there are three located in the North Island, the Tongariro Northern Circuit is a loop track that starts and ends at Mount Ruapahu, the Lake Waikaremoana Track east of the plateau and the Whanganui Journey this is not a walk but a 150 km kayak trip along the Whanganui River in the central North Island.
The South Island is host to the remaining six of the great walks, The Milford Track a multi day walk through the Fiordland National Park, The Routeburn Track is a thirty nine km walk through forests lakes and alpine scenery,The Kepler Track also located in the Fiordland National Park.
The Rakiura Track located on Stewart Island off the coast at the bottom of the South Island. the stunning Abel Tasman Coastal Track at the very top of the South Island and finally the Heaphy Track in the north western area of the South Island this walk is around five days in total.
The Nine Great Walks for the most part are required to be booked in advance as there is a fee to walk these great tracks, accommodation is provided for many of the walks through department of conservation huts which are strategically placed along the tracks some of these huts are first in first served others need to be booked in advance more so during the tramping season.
All through out New Zealand there are a multitude of day walks available to walk for free, some are through stunning native forests untouched by civilization, others like the Hillary Trail West of Auckland city are predominately coastal walks along the wild west coast with stunning views and sandy beaches, the Waikato area in the central North Island are host to some great walks up extinct volcanic cones with some stunning views from the top, so you are never short of a great walk where ever you are in New Zealand.