Step into some of the most exclusive and untouched areas of wilderness in New Zealand. As Gold Qualmark qualified partners, Chris Jolly Outdoors has access to 10,000 acres of pristine nature walks, untouched by the concrete ravages of the modern world. Choose between alpine hiking through volcanic fields and tall ridgelines, dense bush hiking through native flora, or bird watching hikes to experience New Zealand’s birdsong. Our adventure-loving guides love getting lost in the wilderness, listening to the birds move through the trees, and talking tall tales with a glass of red under the stars. Join Chris jolly outdoors for a true taste of Taupō.


Experience The New Zealand Wilderness With Our Expert Hiking Guides

Person after a guided hiking experience on top of Mount Tauhara New Zealand

Choose your guided hiking tour

  • Bespoke guided hiking through alpine areas, the volcanic Central Plateau, and dense New Zealand bush.
  • Bird watching focussed hikes available
  • Tailor the hike to your skill and fitness level.
  • Exclusive guided access to spots unavailable to the public.

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The Opepe Guided Hike


An adventure for the flora and fauna enthusiast. There is a great variety of native New Zealand birds and stunning native forests to be explored at a gentle leisurely pace. Chris Jolly Outdoors supplies an expert guide, small binoculars, and a day pack. We are also able to do a lovely morning or afternoon tea for you and your group for an additional fee.



Lake Rotopounamu hike or ‘Greenstone Lake’ Guided Hike

Nestled on the side of Mt Pihanga towards the southern end of Lake Taupō, Lake Rotopounamuhike is a special place for both tree lovers and birdwatchers alike. Formed by a giant landslide 10,000 years ago, the walk around the lake through stunning native bush showcases one of New Zealand’s natural wonders, all within an easy drive from the Taupō CBD. The walk time is approximately two and a half hours each way, with a medium level of fitness required.

Waipakahi Mountain Hike with Helicopter Transfer

Takle a spectacular 45 minute helicopter tour to a mountain hut via Lake Taupō and The Tongariro World Heritage National Park. From there we will take you on a guided hike for approx. 5 hours through high country to the Tongariro River. Afterwards a guide will drive back to Taupō, an approximately 40 minute journey via Turangi and the eastern shores of Lake Taupō. The entire trip should have a time budget of 8 hours and does require a high level of fitness.

"Share and celebrate the adventure and wonder in nature" - Orvis
Guided Alpine hiking landscape New Zealand

The hiking equipment that you will need to bring:

  • We recommend you carry a day-pack each with a few essential items for your comfort and safety, such as a sun-hat, sunglasses, sunscreen, raincoat and over-trousers, warm polar fleece or woollen pullover (essential even in summer), warm polar fleece or woollen hat.
  • The best-dressed walkers wear shirts made of modern synthetic fibres or wool that move moisture away from the skin, and won’t get cold when wet.
  • Shorts, thermal longjohns, or lightweight walking trousers are best to wear during the day and wool or polypropylene socks are best.
  • Remember, cotton is not your friend on a hike.
  • Sturdy hiking boots are the best footwear to cope with the uneven terrain and are essential if there is any snow lying on the track but on shorter walks a good pair of trail shoes with grip are suitable.

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"Blown away by the location"
Hiking on New Zealand's Alpine ridge lines guided by Chris Jolly

About Our Guided Alpine Hikes

There are a number of exciting mountainous hikes in the Central Plateau of New Zealand. Taupō’s volcanic region is famous for its lunar landscapes of pumice and azure sulphuric lakes. Frozen lava flows that have long since cooled swirl their patterns down the rugged inclines of the three volcanoes, Tongariro, Ruapehu and Ngauruhoe. Choose your level from novice to expert and let our guides lead the way.

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Lake Taupo Sunset

About Lake Taupō

The Great Lake Taupō is nestled in the centre of a plentiful volcanic and geothermal oasis. Enjoy panoramic mountain and lake views, explore the nearby ranges, or journey 20 minutes south to a colour ridden desert. Taupō is the epicentre of the Central Plateau, an area known for its nature-based tourism and extraordinary hot pools, falls and geothermal wonders. Chris Jolly Outdoors is proud to showcase Taupō’s range of hidden gems. Whether you want to meander through open plains or chase adrenaline, Taupō has it all, and we’re here to guide you through it.

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Let loose, let yourself take a chance on a journey full of wonder and adventure click here to make it happen.


The Cruise To Plant Project

Chris Jolly Outdoors is committed to planting trees in an effort to protect and enhance Aotearoa’s natural environment. All passengers on Chris Jolly Outdoors scenic cruises will have a dollar from their ticket price go towards the planting project with The Opepe Farm Trust. This is one of the first planting initiatives for Chris Jolly with the future goals being to offset the boat charter service and to become carbon neutral. The partnership with The Opepe Farm Trust will help to ensure that the right trees are planted for sustainability. The Trust is passionate about protecting the environment for future generations and has the knowledge and expertise to guide the project. Together, we can make a difference in the fight against climate change and help to preserve our natural environment.

Have a closer look at our initiative

Your Taupō Activity Partner

As the trusted activity partner for things to do in Taupō for forty years, Chris Jolly Outdoors will take care of you during your stay here.  From absolute relaxation and fishing crystal pools to exciting hikes in the wilderness; we are the go-to guides to tick off that bucket list.

In Taupō, the possibilities are truly endless. But one thing is sure; we will create a memorable experience for you that you’ll treasure forever.  Put yourself in the picture with us, and book with us today.

More about us

What We Offer

  • Five private charter boats for small or large functions up to 140 pax with full catering/bar/fishing equipment and an exclusive personal crew
  • Access to private land, water and know-how of local’s secret spaces
  • Corporate events & team building.

Reliable and Experienced

  • We’re a family headed by Chris’s son Simon Jolly with a number of the Jolly clan still working within the team
  • We’re a bunch of fishing, hiking, boating, biking, and bush experts with experienced staff who can teach you a lot about the Taupō region.
  • We’ve spent forty years in the industry taking care of people’s holidays.

Our Qualifications

  • Gold Qualmark rated (5 star rating NZ)
  • Our Fly fishing guides are Orvis endorsed, a globally recognised mark of excellence
  • Partners with Ngāti Tūwharetoa (TMGH) with a focus on growing Māori Tourism for Taupō


What clothing is best for hiking, hunting, fishing or being outdoors in Taupō?

Conditions are changeable in Taupō, so it's best to be prepared! The local's joke that Taupō can have four seasons in a day!

  • Hiking boots with good ankle support and grip, or other sturdy footwear
  • Sun hat or warm beanie – pack one and wear the other (we lose 70% of heat through our heads alone!)
  • Sunglasses – wear or pack, NZ has harsh sunlight.
  • Base layer: top and leggings in polypropylene/wool, quick dry shorts or pants
  • Mid layer: long-sleeved top in wool or polar fleece – wear or pack depending on the weather
  • Gloves in polypropylene/wool – wear or pack, only in Winter really.
  • Socks in polypropylene or wool ( a spare pair is always a good idea)

A good exterior layer:

  • Wind and waterproof jacket with hood – wear or pack depending on the weather
  • Waterproof overtrousers optional

I’m planning on going hiking while in Taupō, what should I bring?

The Essentials

  • Day pack with a waterproof liner (no one likes wet clothes)
  • Drink bottle –  2 litre, per day you will be out.
  • Packed lunch and snacks – if you are coming on a guided hike with us here at Chris Jolly Outdoors  we can cater your hike
  • Fully charged mobile phone ­
  • Personal medication, eg antihistamines, asthma medication
  • Extra base layer and socks
  • Rubbish bag
  • Map of the area you'll be walking - if you are being guided you will not need this, we will direct you.

Emergency equipment:

if you are coming on a guided hike with us here at Chris Jolly Outdoors we will make sure to have the following list on hand.
  • Basic first aid kit including hand sanitiser, sunscreen and insect repellent
  • Head torch/torch and spare batteries in case you take longer than intended
  • Survival blanket to keep you warm in an emergency
  • Whistle in case your split up or need help
  • Extra high energy snack food

Are there any native birds around Taupō?

Tui, Fantail and wax eyes are amongst the beautiful birdsong that serenades lake Taupō's verdant native bush.

Contact Us

in New Zealand

phone Icon073780623

from overseas

phone Icon+64 7 378 0623

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