Ride Sky Waka

New Zealand’s most unique gondola experience. Situated within the UNESCO dual world heritage Tongariro National Park, Sky Waka travels 1.8kms through one of the North Island’s most rugged and spectacular landscapes on Whakapapa, Mt Ruapehu.


National Park Villages, blog post, Ride Sky Waka, Ride the Sky Waka - New Zealand’s most unique gondola experience. Situated within the UNESCO dual world heritage Tongariro National Park, Sky Waka travels 1.8kms through one of the North Island’s most rugged and spectacular landscapes on Whakapapa, Mt Ruapehu.

Journey Into The Clouds

New Zealand’s most unique gondola experience. Situated within the UNESCO dual world heritage Tongariro National Park, Sky Waka travels 1.8kms through one of the North Island’s most rugged and spectacular landscapes on Whakapapa, Mt Ruapehu.

  • Base station
  • Uphill capacity of 2400 people per hour
  • 50 cabins seating up to 10 people
  • Operating speed is up to 6 metres per second
  • Floor to ceiling views of the volcanic landscapes
  • Knoll Ridge Chalet


What's Sky Waka

  • A symbol of the future, bringing People Together
  • The waka, celebrated by name in song and story by Māori poets and orators, we know it to be more than a voyaging canoe, more than a carrier of people – the waka carries whanau (family). All Māori, after all, have lineal ties with the chiefs of the great waka.
  • As the highest and longest gondola upon Te Ika a Maui (North Island), this is more than a machine. It is a vessel to bring people together, to elevate them, together, upon this great maunga (mountain). It is a thread, weaving earth and sky.
  • We celebrate the waka and its symbolism of interconnectedness between the past, the present and future. For this is surely a symbol of the future, ascending this ancient maunga.


World Heritage - A Global Park

  • Unesco World Heritage Site
  • Established in 1887, Tongariro is New Zealand's oldest national park and a dual World Heritage area. Situated in the middle of the North Island, the park is centred upon three volcanoes: Tongariro, Ngauruhoe and Ruapehu. The dual World Heritage status recognises its Māori cultural significance as well as its outstanding volcanic features.
  • The expansive 80,000-hectare park has a diverse range of ecosystems and some of New Zealand’s most dramatic landscapes, showcasing waterfalls, emerald lakes, old lava flows, and colourful silica terraces. From volcanic peaks to lush native bush and rivers, it’s truly a natural wonder.

Posted in Blog on 01 July, 2021