Walks & hikes

The Lodge provides an excellent base for walking in the Canterbury High Country with a wide range of easy walks & hikes.

With landscapes like those in ‘The Lord of the Rings’ movies you’ll need your camera!

Canterbury walks, New Zealand Walkway - View From Peak Hill

Overview of all walks with map – click link below

Walks in the Lake Coleridge area with map (PDF, 637KB)

.  .  .  .  .  .  .  .

From the Lodge doorstep…

Village Historical Walk

(from 30 minutes – 2 hours)

Lake Coleridge Power Station

Lake Coleridge Power Station – New Zealand’s oldest government-built hydro station, constructed from 1911-1914



Download the Historic Lake Coleridge Village Walking Guide – click here (PDF, 1.4MB) or pick up a copy from the Lodge and explore the local area while learning about our history and some of the people who have created the village we enjoy today.

.  .  .  .  .  .  .  .

Hart Arboretum – ‘Tree Trail’

(approx. 30 minutes – 1 hour)

Hart Arboretum

Hart Arboretum




Named after its creator Harry Hart, Superintendent at the Lake Coleridge Power Station from 1923 to 1953, the Hart Arboretum contains around two thirds of the world’s pine species.

The Arboretum is nationally significant and creates a park-like environment in Lake Coleridge Village.

Download the Tree Trail – Self-Guided Walk brochure (PDF, 1.45MB) to learn about some of the trees. Some free copies of the brochure are also available at the Arboretum to take on your walk and return to the ‘Tree Trail’ box at the entrance when you leave.

On your walk you might encounter some of the horses that graze in the area when not out on treks.

Horse in Lake Coleridge Village

.  .  .  .  .  .  .  .

Power Station Tailrace Walk

(approx. 30 minutes)
Take in panoramic views of the Rakaia River, Algidus country and the Southern Alps. At certain times of the year you may even see salmon in the clear fast running water.

.  .  .  .  .  .  .  .

Rakaia Riverbed Walk

(from 15 mins to 2+ hours)
Explore the Rakaia River on foot by wading through shallow tributaries and following 4WD tracks on the gravel spits. You can walk for several kilometers up the river bed depending on river conditions. It is not advisable to walk on the river bed if there has been heavy rain in the mountains during the previous 12 hours. Having wetsuit shoes for crossing through the water is useful.

Canterbury walks, New Zealand Walkway - Rakaia Riverbed

.  .  .  .  .  .  .  .

Walk to Lake Coleridge

(approx. 1 – 1.5 hours one way)
For the fitter among us this walk is about 5km one way and takes you through forest and grasslands up to Lake Coleridge, 150 meters above the Lodge.

.  .  .  .  .  .  .  .

Te Araroa; New Zealand’s National Walkway

The Lodge is at the end of one of the stages of Te Araroa (The Long Pathway), which is the walking trail that goes between Cape Reinga at the top of the North Island and Bluff at the bottom of the South Island; the entire length of New Zealand.





From the Lodge door you can follow the orange markers and walk part of Te Araroa around the northern edge of Lake Coleridge. Full trail notes can be found in the Canterbury section on the Te Araroa website >

For those Te Araroa walkers who are looking to stay at the Lodge we offer a range of services. More information is on our Te Araroa page >

.  .  .  .  .  .  .  .

Walks a short drive away

Peak Hill

(approx. 3 – 4 hours return), photo at top of page
If you’re after spectacular views of the whole area, this is the walk for you! To get to the start of this walkway it is about 10 minutes drive from the Lodge. Good shoes and reasonable fitness are a must. Learn more on the Department of Conservation website.

.  .  .  .  .  .  .  .

Dry Acheron Walkway

(approx. 2 – 10 hours return)
To get to the start of this walkway it is about 10 minutes drive from the Lodge. The walk can take between 2-10 hours return depending on how far you go! This walk takes you across high country station land and up the Dry Acheron stream. Learn more on the Department of Conservation website.

.  .  .  .  .  .  .  .

Lake Ida

(approx. 1.5 hours return)
To get to the start of this walkway it is about 30 minutes drive from the Lodge. The walk is on the northern side of Lake Coleridge. You follow markers to a small high country lake that often freezes over in winter making it a destination for ice-skaters. Note: Ice-skating on Lake Ida is done at your own risk. Photo below of Lake Ida in winter by Lodge guest Kate Wills

Canterbury walks, New Zealand Walkway - Rakaia Riverbed

Rakaia Gorge Walkway

(approx. 1 – 4 hours return)
To get to the start of this walkway it is about 30 minutes drive from the Lodge. The walk follows the rim of the gorge and takes you past several features of geological and historical interest. Learn more on the Department of Conservation website.

.  .  .  .  .  .  .  .

Washpen Falls

(approx. 2 hours round trip)
To get to the start of this walkway it is about 25 minutes drive from the Lodge. The walk takes you through a canyon, formed by an ancient volcano, now thick in native bush and full of birdsong. You’ll see waterfalls, caves and panoramic views of the Canterbury plains, and learn a lot along the way from the comprehensive track information guide. It takes about 2 hours, but you can spend longer and take a picnic. The walk has been established on private farm land and a small fee is charged at the gate. Learn more on the Washpen Falls website.

.  .  .  .  .  .  .  .

Tracks in the Arthur’s Pass area

You can reach many of the tracks in the Arthur’s Pass area by driving across the Lyndon Road which connects Lake Coleridge with SH73. The Lyndon Road is a scenic 20km unsealed road through the Korowai/Torlesse Tussocklands Park. The road is well-maintained during summer making several of the walks in the Arthur’s Pass area easy day trips from the Lodge. Learn more on the Department of Conservation website.

.  .  .  .  .  .  .  .

Be Prepared for Walking in the High Country

Be prepared for changeable weather, including the odd snow flurry on higher ground even during summer! You will need suitable footwear, a warm layer, rain jacket, plenty of water, a hat and sunscreen.