Aoraki/Mt Cook Park in South Island – New Zealand

The Aoraki Mt Cook Park is one of the more exciting places you can visit in New Zealand. Its beautiful scenery offers plenty to see, plus there are a lot of activities that can be done.


The park is situated at South Island. It is not far from the town of Twizel. You can reach the place via Twizel. Take the sealed road heading to the village of Mount Cook. The Glentanner Park Center is 15 minutes away from the village.

What to See

There are several mountains to admire here. Walking around the park is a great way to see them up close. If you want a bird’s eye view, there are air safaris and helicopter sightseeing tours available.

This will give you the opportunity to see all the glaciers and mountains. At Aoraki Mt Cook Park, you can go kayaking at Mueller Lake. Other activities you can engage in are mountaineering, skiing, hiking and walking.

Mount Cook is definitely one of the highlights here. The highest peak in Australasia, several glaciers can be seen around it. If you take the boat trips, you will be able to see the icebergs. The scenery around the mountains are also breathtaking.

The Sir Edmund Hillary Alpine Center has plenty of information about the area. There is a 3D movie theater, planetarium and museum.


The park spans an area over 700 sq km. Over 40% of the area is covered by glaciers. With the exception of Mount Aspiring, every peak in New Zealand over 3,000 m is located here. Among them are Mt Elie de Beaumont, Mt Sefton, Mt Hicks and Mt Cook, the highest peak in New Zealand at 3,753 meters.

Geologically speaking, the mountains are young, being less than 10 million years old. The uplift is around 10 mm annually. Due to the natural beauty of the park, it has become a popular tourist destination. It is also part of the Te Wahipounamu South Westland World Heritage Site.


Kayaking on the lake costs 120 USD per individual.

Other Info

If you want to go tramping, try it at Mueller Hut. The Ball Pass Trek is another good option. However, the Ball Pass Trek is challenging; you must have some experience. A guide will also be helpful.

The Aoraki Mt Cook Park also has several options for skiing enthusiasts. You can also try heliskiing. Those who want to try their hand at mountaineering can avail of the courses being offered.