Whakapapa Ski Area on the north-western slopes of Mt Ruapehu is New Zealand's largest ski area.
Whakapapa is home to New Zealand's premiere beginners' area, Happy Valley. It's a big complete learner’s area in its own valley away from the worry of faster skiers/boarders putting you off. It has its own cafe, rental complex and ski school meeting area. The gentle slope is nice and long, giving you plenty of time to really get the hang of your new sport and there is a slow-moving chairlift that takes you to the top of the slope while giving your legs a rest between runs.
There are more than 30 groomed trails that intermediate skiers and boarders love. The volcanic terrain at Whakapapa gives a massive variety between trails, giving you the choice of bumps, chutes, drops, bowls or nice wide runs.
With 24 black and black diamond runs plus the lift accessed Black Magic backcountry area, there is plenty at Whakapapa to get the adrenaline pumping even for the most expert of experts.