The Mackenzie Basin is a great place to explore the high country with reserves, parks, and conservation areas protecting mountains, plains and wetlands. There are walks available that cater to all fitness and experience levels.
There are many magnificent options available right here in Twizel that follow our beautiful rivers, lakes, and canals as well as over 30 walking tracks that start within an hour’s drive of Matuka Lodge.
Twizel is a fantastic base camp for the Hiker to experience the alpine terrain available close by, particularly in the Aoraki/Mt Cook National Park.
Alps 2 Ocean
Matuka Lodge is situated on the Alps 2 Ocean trail.
In recent years Twizel has become increasingly renowned as a critical hub for the Alps 2 Ocean Cycleway. This cycle trail starts from our highest mountain, Aoraki Mt Cook, past great lakes and rivers, and down to the ocean. Suitable for all ages, the 8 section bike trail is an easy to intermediate grade, offering a pleasing mix of on and off-road terrain which links the Southern Alps to the Pacific Ocean with any of the 8 sections being able to be ridden as a day trip.
There are also many other rides in or near Twizel that offer a unique outlook on our stunning landscape.
Lakes and Rivers nearby
There are 6 large beautiful lakes near Twizel, Lake Tekapo, Lake Pukaki, Lake Ohau, Lake Benmore, Lake Aviemore, and Lake Ruataniwha as well as the smaller Loch Cameron and Lake Poaka and Lake Middleton. Each offers a distinctive experience depending on whether you choose to encounter them from on land or on the water itself. Each offers activities such as swimming, walking, fishing, cycling, shady picnic spots, and more.
Late February to March/April experience the Sockeye salmon spawning in the Fraser Stream across the road from Matuka Lodge an amazing sight.
There are also a number of rivers close by including the Twizel River (access from Glen Lyon Road opposite Nuns Veil Road), Fraser River, Ohau River, Hopkins River, and Tasman River.
There are several rivers, lakes and hydro canals to be fished around the Twizel area offering some of the best freshwater fishing to be found anywhere in New Zealand. For beginners, fishing in the canals provides an opportunity to land a big trout or salmon, and for the more experienced anglers, there are many interesting and challenging options available.
There are a number of fishing guides based in Twizel, for more information ask Peter and Jo.
Located in the hydroelectric canals that connect Lakes Tekapo, Lake Pukaki and Lake Ohau are salmon farms that utilise the pristine glacial water that run through them. This sustainable aquiculture industry provides richly favoured products that are available to purchase directly from the farms.
High Country Salmon is just south of Lake Ruataniwha on SH8. Buy fresh salmon and sashimi plus you are able to feed the fish.
Mt Cook Salmon is located in the carpark at Lake Pukaki on SH8 with outstanding views of Mt Cook on a clear day. Fresh salmon and sashimi are available to purchase.
Take a majestic flight by either helicopter, fixed-wing plane or even bi-plane and see this incredible landscape in a whole new way. View the dramatic mountains and alps as they expose their rugged faces and snow-clad spines. You may even choose to experience an ice Glacier landing.
Tours can be booked at the Twizel Information Centre located in the local Market Place or contact Pete and Jo.
New Zealand is renowned as a skiing destination. The great open spaces of the Mackenzie Country and sparse population make the perfect backdrop to some of the most spectacular skiing and snowboarding in the country. There are two incredible boutique ski areas within an hour’s drive of Matuka Lodge that offers beginner through to advanced off-piste skiing and boarding.
Ohau Snow Fields; www.ohau.co.nz
Ski Roundhill; www.roundhill.co.nz
You have an amazing opportunity to play tree-lined fairways with the stunning snow-covered Southern Alps as your backdrop. The Ben Ohau Golf Course in Twizel welcomes players to their stunning 9 hole course (no bunkers!!)also a driving range, four-person golf carts are available.
Mini Golf is also available at The Musterer’s Hut Cafe, Ruataniwha Road, Twizel.
Hot tubs Omarama are an easy 25-minute drive.
Other Local Facilities
Twizel Swimming Pool is located behind the Twizel Events Centre, it is an outdoor pool, open during the summer season for a small fee.
Loch Cameron is a beautiful small lake only a short distance from Matuka Lodge with an Island- it is a very special place.
Local tennis courts are located behind the Twizel Swimming Pool. Free of charge. BYO rackets and balls.
There are two squash courts in the Twizel Events Centre. Book and pay at Twizel Information Centre.
Indoor Rock Climbing
The Twizel indoor climbing wall is open weekly on Thursday night from 7-9pm. Located in the Twizel Events Centre.
The Twizel Frisbee Golf course starts beside the old earthmoving machines on Wairepo Road. It is free to use and open to the public. Play against the locals Tuesday and Thursday evenings from 5pm.