GRAND CHATEAU SHORT BREAK including "Northern Explorer" train to and from National Park.
4 days/3 nights. Minimum 2 passengers.
FROM AUCKLAND: depart Strand Railway Station 7.45am, Papakura 8.40am, and Hamilton 10.15am every monday year round. Return 6.50pm friday.
FROM WELLINGTON: depart Wellington Railway station 7.55am, Paraparaumu 8.45am, and Palmerston North 10am every tuesday year round. Return 6.25pm saturday.
Itinerary ex Auckland. Wellington passengers same itinerary tuesday - saturday.
Day 1. Monday. Auckland - Grand Chateau. (High Tea)
7.45am. Depart Auckland Strand Rail station aboard the "Northern Explorer" train for the scenic journey along the banks of the Waikato River, through rural dairy farmland, small communities, and the more rugged Volcanic Plateau including the engineering marvel of the Raurimu Spiral up which the train must climb. Arrive National Park station 1.15pm and transfer to the Grand Chateau just 20 minutes drive away. High tea is served in the main lounge at 3.30pm.
Day 2. Tuesday GRAND CHATEAU (B)
Shuttle to the Top of the Bruce ski base for your 1.8 km Sky Waka ride to the Knoll Ridge cafe 2,020 metres above sea level for magnificent views in fine weather. Also take a hike for panoramic views over Mt Doom and Mordor.
This afternoon is free for alpine or bush walk, try golf or tennis, or just relax. In summer enjoy any of the many alpine walks, All afternoon activities extra expense.
Day 3. Wednesday. GRAND CHATEAU - around the mountains. (BD)
Enjoy a full day tour around the mountains including Ohakune, Gollums pool, Waiouru Army Museum , Desert Road, Trout Hatchery, and an hour to bathe in the Tokaanu Hot Pools - bring your togs. Return to the Chateau late afternoon.
Day 4. Thursday. GRAND CHATEAU (B)
Free day to relax or explore at your leisure. There are many alpine walks of varying degrees of fitness. For the very active we recommend the Tongariro Crossing but a high level of fitness is required.
Day 5. Friday GRAND CHATEAU - AUCKLAND (B)
Free time this morning before transferring to the National Park Ralway Station and departing at 1.15pm arriving Hamilton 4.30pm, Papakura 5.55pm, and Auckland Strand Railway station 6.50pm.
The Tongariro Crossing is one of the 'must do' world walks. Magnificent mountain scenery in the presence of two active volcanoes, Mt Tongariro, and Mt Ngaruhoe (aka Mt Doom) in the Tongariro National Park. Experience Mountain Springs, a glacial valley, old lava flows, active craters, steam vents, emerald coloured lakes, and alpine plant life all included.
We strongly recommend taking a guided hike to enjoy the best experience in safety. Weather conditions change rapidly in the mountains and your guide will have the latest information as well as introduce the mountain flora, fauna, and scenery to you. Cost $195. Pickup at the Grand Chateau is about 7am and return about 4pm. Mountain equipment is included. Track length is 19.4 kms starting at 1100 metres above sea level. Highest point is 1886 metres. A reasonable level of fitness is required. A minimum of 2 nights at the Chateau is required.