Spotlight on Twizel
This mini guide will take you on a journey off the beaten track right in the heart of the Mackenzie high country.
  1. Home
  2. Destinations
  3. Mackenzie
  4. 5 Things You Can't Miss in Twizel

5 Things You Can't Miss in Twizel

Historic hydro town and heart of the Mackenzie High Country, Twizel is a hub for great outdoor adventures in the Mackenzie Region. With five lakes, rivers, picturesque canals, bicycle and walking tracks, and ski fields all nearby, there’s plenty to do right in the Twizel area. Here are just five ideas – discover more for yourself!

1. Twizel River Trail

Stroll by the beautiful and peaceful Twizel River and find a shady spot to sit and relax or enjoy a picnic. The full Twizel River Trail is 24 kilometres return, but shorter sections are just as rewarding. The trail is easy for children and is baby buggy friendly.

Local tip: The Twizel River has some great swimming spots – on a hot day, find the perfect swimming hole to cool off.


2. Market Place Shops & Restaurants

Enjoy the Market Place with its spacious pedestrian-only layout. There are excellent cafés, cool and quirky shops and large kakī (black stilt) bird public artworks.

Local tip: Twizel’s town centre also boasts an awesome playground, including an always-popular real-life tractor.




3. Paddle Board or Kayak on Lake Ruataniwha

Looking for a new way to get out on the water? Try paddle-boarding on Lake Ruataniwha – a great way to be active and enjoy some stunning views!

Local tip: SUP-ing not your thing? Kayaks are available, too, if you prefer to tackle water sports sitting down.



4. Twizel Mini Golf

Play Twizel-themed miniature golf (complete with mini penstocks!) by the Musterers Hut Café. Each hole is named after the local high country stations and farms.

Local tip: While you’re there, check out the big machines just across the road – a reminder of the dam days when Twizel was a booming industrial centre.




5. Alps to Ocean Cycle Trail

Cycle a portion of the Alps 2 Ocean Cycle Trail. The section by Lake Pukaki is relatively easy and particularly beautiful for a day outing.

Local tip: Several local companies offer bike hire and shuttle services to support riders on a day trip on the A2O. They’ll take care of all the details – just show up and enjoy the ride!



If you want to find out more about the Mackenzie region, check out the Aoraki/Mt Cook Mackenzie page.