Last Updated: 5th Apr 2024


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Taupo to Huka Falls Loop

Taupo, Waikato

Submitted by Melissa Franklin

Last Updated: 5th Apr 2024


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I've done it Done


Grunt Factor: 15 ?

Gnarl Factor: 14 ?








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Trail Map

Type of Run

Urban fringe


Undulating, small hills only

Native bush


Run Makeup


Sealed Road

Easy Single Track

Average Uphill Gradient: +5.3%

Average Downhill Gradient: -6.0%


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Estimated Times to Run







Starting at the Taupo Domain, run up towards the Waitako River and the bridge that the main road out of Taupo travels to the north. Cross the road before the bridge and you should see the track going to the right of the bridge. Follow this track up the river and you will climb up to Spa Road and have to run along the road for a little bit before turning left on County Ave which goes to spa thermal park. Follow the foot path until you reach the end of the road at a park. You will see two tracks, one going to the left and the other goes straight ahead. The straight ahead route takes you to the mountain bike track which is nicer to run. The left takes you along the river path which is also easy to run but with sharper climbs. For the purpose of this trail directory, continue straight ahead and take the sign posted route to the mountain bike track. Follow this until you see a sign indicating the direction to Huka Falls (to your left). This track will take you down the hill to the bridge just above Huka Falls. If you want to see the falls you will have to run down the right side of the bridge until the end of the track. Once you have seen the falls, return back up the track to the bridge and continue on the river path as it goes past the bridge to the left. You will follow this path back to spa thermal park and then back track your footsteps the way you came back to your car.

Huka falls, thermal springs

If you know of any public toilets near the trail start or on the route, please login and then let us know so we can update this section.

Park car on Redoubt Road

0 km

1 minutes




Just be aware of the where the track comes out on to Spa Road so you know where to find it when you return. Also I found when returning on the river path that after you cross a small bridge over a hot water steam there is a split in the track, go left here and that will return you to spa thermal park.

Perfect throughout.

Long-sleeved thermal top, Seam-sealed waterproof jacket, Gloves, Beanie/thermal headwear, Whistle, First aid kit, Extra food for emergencies, Cellphone, Map

Water in the toilets in spa thermal park if needed

River track holds up well in rain but mountain bike track can get muddy. Taupo can be cold in winter (and sometimes it even snows).

Watch for mountain bikers when using their tracks.

Trail Legend

Bryan  Stout

Bryan Stout

has completed Taupo to Huka Falls Loop once in the last year.

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Trail Reviews

Lovely run with stunning views, great to see other runners out enjoying the track on a beautiful Saturday morning

Rachael Tobeck

December 5, 2020

Running the MTB track from Spa Park to Huka Falls and return is one of my favourite wee trail jaunts when visiting my folks in Taupo ... have done this many times!

Toni Grace

January 29, 2020

great run, plus hot springs near the end for a great post run dip. can be combined with many other trails (e.g. to aratiatia rapids etc)

Julia Anderson

August 11, 2019

This was a great run. Lovely following the river. Lots of places for a dip if you get hot.

christine weeks

November 6, 2018

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