Ruapehu grows large against the sky as visitors approach by road, air or rail. Coaches, buses or rental cars will get your clients around the region or up to the ski field.

By Road

Ruapehu is highly accessible as it’s in between both State Highway 1 and State Highway 4.  In winter roads can be icy and covered in snow so care is needed.

Approx drive time and distances to other areas:




Approx Drive Time

Taupo to Tuarangi



1 hour

Taupo to Hamilton



2 hours 10 mins

Taupo to Napier



2 hours 30 mins

Taupo to Auckland



4 hours 5 mins

Taupo to Wellington



5 hours 10 mins

Taumarunui to Auckland



4 hours 45 mins

Taumarunui to Wellington



5 hours 15 mins


Your clients can get around the North Island by coach with InterCity Coachlines or a number of other suppliers. 

Driving Routes
The Thermal Explorer Highway is another option for clients to get from Auckland to Ruapehu and onto Hawke's Bay. It also takes clients past the Huka Falls, Mount Ruapehu and Rotorua.  The Wairakei Park Tourist Drive also takes in many attractions such as the Huka Falls and Aratiatia Rapids.

The Western Bays Highway circles the lake on the western side, whereas the Volcanic Loop circles Tongariro National Park from Turangi, offering amazing views of the volcanoes.

By Air

Taupo airport is the closest to Ruapehu and offers daily domestic flights.

Airlines flying into Taupo include:
Air New Zealand
Mountain Air

Approx flying time to other cities:


Approx Flying Time

Taupo to Auckland

55 mins

Taupo to Wellington

1 hour

Taupo to Christchurch (via Wellington)

2 hours 15 mins – 2 hours 50 mins

Getting to and from the airport

Taupo airport is approximately 10 minutes drive from Taupo town centre.

Clients can get a taxi to the town centre for approximately $15-20 or a shuttle bus for approximately $15 for the first person and $3 for each person thereafter.

By Rail

The Northern Explorer rail service goes through Tongariro National Park offering great view of the volcanoes and surrounding area. It runs from Auckland through to Wellington.

Getting Around Ruapehu

Getting around the town centres is easy by foot, however hire cars are also available.  Regular shuttles are available to take skiers up the mountain and to the walking tracks, including tour operators that are available to drop your clients off at the start of the Tongariro Alpine Crossing one day hike.

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