Soaring nearly 1 km above the town of Te Aroha, you will find the summit of Mount Te Aroha. The tallest mountain in the Kaimai-Mamaku range offering spectacular views across the Waikato and Bay of the Plenty regions. Mount Te Aroha walks are lesser known than other area tracks meaning less tourists to contend with.
My dear friend and I walked at a vigorous pace only stopping briefly for photos at the lookout and summit. There are multiple tracks to pick from depending on your fitness level and time constraints. We opted for the fastest route to the top via the Tui Domain Track. This hike started at the Mokena Geyser (located in Te Aroha Domain) and made our way up to the Whakapipi Lookout first. The day was stunning offering this view across the Hauraki Plains.
The hike to the Whakapipi Lookout took us less than 30 minutes at a fairly brisk walking pace. We took a few minutes to admire the scenery before ascending to the summit. This walk had its challenging bits but a well define track made it easy to navigate.
The trail was a mix of constructed steps and large rocks. The parts lined with rocks required a bit more physical strength and covered us in mud. I love the look personally. If you do not come away from a summit climb plastered in mud and/or soaking wet, did you even climb a mountain? My suggestion would be to bring a hand towel or take a dip in the Te Aroha Mineral hot pools post walk.
Mount Te Aroha Summit
This became one of my favorite summit views from my time in New Zealand.
The summit has double duties as a transmission and communication tower. There is even a driving road up to the top but not open for public use.
At the top you will find an engraved compass pointing to all the landmarks that are visible on a clear day.
I only carried my cell phone on this particular climb so could not make out Mount Maunganui in the distance. There were a few clouds making it a bit difficult to spot without my long lens or binoculars.
This is the view looking off to the Northeast across to the Pacific Ocean.
This panoramic view displays the remarkable day! My only complaint would be the strong winds once we reached the summit.
We hunched behind a rock providing protection from the wind to snack on a sandwich before making our way back down via the same trail.
We were in a rush this particular day to get back to our families but I heard the natural hot pools are amazing post walk.
My recommendation is to add this walk to your bucket list but pick a calm/clear day!