Lake Waikaremoana is located on an elevation above 600 m. The reason that the best time for hiking is actually pretty short. Snow can happen until November, December to March are the most pleasant months; not too hot while the winter is pretty cold with snow, hail, and strong winds. It frequently rains throughout the year.
Heavy rainfall during winter until early spring. Even snow is possible until the end of November due to the high elevation. The best time is summer and early autumn from November/December to March, but it can turn cold at any time of the year. Be always prepared for 4 seasons in one day.
Due to the remote location, it is more popular with the "Kiwis". More crowded at Christmas school holiday which lasts to the end of January/beginning of February. Not many foreign visitors come here. The Te Urewera Great Walk is the at least popular trail although it's the biggest forest wilderness area which remained on the North Island of New Zealand. School holidays
Lake Waikaremoana is part of the 1954 established Te Urewera National Park. The Name of the Lake was given by the Maori and means “sea of rippling waters”. It’s the deepest lake on the North Island with a depth of 256 meters in an elevation of 600 meters above sea level. At Waikaremoana starts one of the nine Great Walks of New Zealand. The trail is 44 km long and last three to four days. There are huts along the track which require advanced booking. Camping is permitted at a distance of 500 meters and more from the track. More information about the Great Walk
Several day hiking trails lead through the unique rainforest, gorgeous waterfalls, caves, remote beaches at Lake Waikareiti and an 800-1000 years old Rata Tree.
Where to Stay
There are not many opportunities to stay close to the lake, and advanced booking is recommended especially during summer. We booked a cabin at the Holiday Park close to the Aniwaniwa Information Center and the Papakorito Falls. The cabins are well equipped and beautifully situated next to the Lake. We hiked the well-marked Ruapani Circuit which takes about 5 hours depending on your fitness level.
Gravel roads lead to the Lake Waikaremoana. It is better to check the road conditions first especially after heavy rainfall. We recommend a 4 WD.