Ohakune - ATTENTION!

Visit our National Military Museum at Waiouru, stay in true alpine lodge style accommodation and journey by train over the spectacular Main Trunk Line.

View all Discover Ruapehu Rail Tours Packages

This package is perfect for the inner historian in you. Bring your partner, friends or even the kids for this weekend getaway. Staying under the mountain, this tour will take you to the National Army Museum in Waiouru where you will find some national treasures, proud history and a unique collection of exhibits. Visit the Tangiwai railway disaster memorial and walk the trails. Whilst staying at the acclaimed Powderhorn Chateau. We’ll even sneak in a guided tour of local flora and fauna with Megan Younger, a local ecologist.

Your Itinerary

Day 1 - Friday

📍 Auckland/Hamilton - Ohakune by Chartered Heritage Train
☕ Morning tea aboard train

A rail adventure begins. Our friendly train-mad staff are ready to greet you onboard at your choice of boarding location. The journey south from Pukekohe takes you through the outer fringes of Auckland and into the Waikato. Our journey to Hamilton will be a mixture of rural farmland and their community centres like Te Kauwhata and Huntly. Be sure to check out the Whangamarino wetlands, the Waikato river and Huntly power station before curving our way through the Taupiri gorge. After our departure from Hamilton, we make quick stops for passengers at Te Awamutu and Otorohanga. Te Kuiti marks the gateway to the real “Main Trunk Line”.

Our train will start to climb the steep grades, keep an eye out for the 132 year old Waiteti viaduct. Entering the Porootarao tunnel signals we have reached our summit. From here, we descend to the Ongarue river valley which guides us to Taumarunui. After a quick stop we then follow the Whanganui and Whakapapa rivers for half the trip to the foot of the world renowned Raurimu Spiral. This engineering masterpiece overcomes a 139 metre height difference by spiralling up the volcanic rock escarpment. Catch several glimpses of the town as we climb the various levels of the spiral while also passing through two tunnels. As we burst out of the second of the two tunnels, we have reached the top of the spiral itself. We continue to climb towards National Park for a brief stop to set down passengers. From here, we embark on the final 30 minute gallop across the central plateau including cross the imposing 79 metre high Makatote viaduct and passing through native bush land.

We glide past the famous Smash Palace at Horopito before making our final descent over the 414 metre long Hapuawhenua viaduct and finally arrive into Ohakune. Your accommodation is just across the road from the railway station. Settle in then head down to the restaurant and bar for a meal and bevvy or two!


Auckland (Pukekohe) dep. 9.05am
Hamilton (Frankton)
dep. 11.00am
Te Awamutu
dep. 11.40am
Otorohanga dep. 12.05.pm
Taumarunui arr. 1.45pm
National Park
arr. 3.15pm
Ohakune arr. 3.55pm

Day 2 - Saturday

📍 Ohakune
🍽️ Cooked breakfast at accommodation
🍽️ Lunch at National Army Museum

Start the day with a full cooked breakfast, then your shuttle bus will take you to Waiouru, the home of the National Army museum. This museum is home of our most unique army exhibits and national treasures. Take in the exceptional displays and learn about our army history during an unforgettable experience. There is interactive learning for the kids too!

Lunch is provided at the museum before heading back to Ohakune, stopping at the nearby Tangiwai railway disaster memorial. This is a sombre place but full of beautiful monuments and information about New Zealand’s worst railway disaster in history.

There is even a short walk to get you up close to where the infamous bridge was where the disaster occurred. Back on the shuttle and back to Ohakune. Explore the town and local walks. Dine out at one of the local eateries or head back to your accommodation for an evening feast or soak in the indoor heated pool. 

Day 3 - Sunday

📍 Ohakune - Auckland/Hamilton by Chartered Heritage Train
🍽️ Cooked breakfast at accommodation
☕ Afternoon tea aboard train

Time to wake up! Open the window and hear the sound of the Mangawhero river gently flowing. Another fully cooked breakfast to set you up for the day before heading into nature for a guided tour by local ecologist, Megan Younger. Megan will take you into the bush and explain all you need to know about the local flora and fauna of the region and the importance of conservation to keep this special part of New Zealand so unique. Before long, it will be time to board your train. Once again, our friendly staff will be happy to see you again, and to assist you to settle in for the journey home. Take this time to have a little rest or share your stories with other guests onboard.


Ohakune dep. 11.30am
National Park
dep. 12.10pm
Taumarunui dep. 1.10pm
Otorohanga arr. 3.00pm
Te Awamutu
arr. 3.25pm
Hamilton (Frankton)
arr. 3.55pm
Auckland (Pukekohe)


The Powderhorn Chateau is the perfect combination of boutique hotel facilities and alpine lodge ambiance. The log cabin type construction, mood lighting and polished timber set the atmosphere for an alpine getaway. Free WiFi, two in-house restaurants and bars, pool tables, darts and an indoor pool provide plenty of entertainment or the option to simply unwind. The township of Ohakune is a short 15 minute walk from the chateau, nearby for you to explore local shops and eateries.

The Heritage Train Journey

The North Island Main Trunk is steeped in local and Maori history. Opened completely between Auckland and Wellington in 1908 after over 30 years of construction, the “Main Trunk” passes through many rural settlements and towns which were connected up to the major cities by the coming of the railway. The section we travel over covers the main centres of Pukekohe and Hamilton, followed by rural towns like Otorohanga, Te Kuiti, Taumarunui, National Park and Ohakune. The railway geography is diverse, from rolling hills to the steepest sustained climbs up the extreme gradients south of Taumarunui. Our journey passes through the UNESCO World Heritage site of Tongariro National Park, as well as conservation land, farms and forests.

Selected Highlights Include:

  • Travel over the North Island Main Trunk line on an exclusive heritage train
  • Traverse the world famous Raurimu Spiral
  • Cross over the spectacular Waiteti, Makatote and Hapuawhenua Viaducts
  • Track our path along the Ongarue and Whakapapa river valleys
  • Pass through the Porootarao and Raurimu tunnels
  • Stunning Mountain views and spectacular scenery

This heritage train operated by the Glenbrook Vintage Railway will be hauled by restored locomotive DBR1254. Originally built as a DB class locomotive by General Motors Diesel Canada in 1965, this locomotive was rebuilt by Clyde Engineering Australia in 1981. In 2017 the Glenbrook Vintage Railway took ownership of DBR1254 which underwent an intense overhaul before returning to mainline service in 2019.

The carriages date from 1939/1940 and would have made thousands of journeys up and down the main trunk. The carriages retain key features including the iconic flip-over seats, though have been tastefully redecorated for enhanced passenger comfort. The guard’s van that travels with these carriages provides an open viewing area for an uninterrupted view of the amazing countryside.


  • Return train travel from Pukekohe/Hamilton/Te Awamutu/Otorohanga to Ohakune and return.
  • Two nights’ accommodation at the Powderhorn Chateau Ohakune.
  • Transfers to activities on Saturday.
  • Cooked breakfast Saturday and Sunday.
  • Admission and lunch at the National Army Museum.
  • Guided walk with local ecologist, Megan Younger.
  • Complimentary light refreshments on outbound and homebound rail journeys.

Terms and Conditions

Full standard Terms and Conditions can be found here: https://www.gvr.org.nz/terms

Additional conditions:


In the event that the NZ government imposes COVID-19 restrictions preventing the GVR train tour from operating, a refund of monies paid may be given, net of any outgoings or payments already made by GVR in conjunction with the operation and organisation of these tours on written application within 7 days of the scheduled date of travel.

Visit Ruapehu and Ruapehu District i-SITE Visitor Centre Conditions

These packages are organised through Visit Ruapehu and the Ruapehu District i-SITE Visitor Centres who handle all accommodation, transfers, and activities for these packages. Please contact them on 0800 647 483 or email them at isite@ruapehudc.govt.nz for their terms and conditions which apply to your booking.

All packages are subject to availability, after you place your booking the i-SITE will confirm your arrangements with the individual providers and operators.
If parts of your chosen package are unavailable, the i-SITE will work with you to provide a suitable substitution/customisation or we will refund you fully.

The Glenbrook Vintage Railway Charitable Trust Board will not be held liable for any damages arising from errors or omissions in the information provided for you on this website

Book This Package

Travelling solo, with kids, or as a group? Package not available for your preferred date? The Ruapehu i-SITE is able to customise packages to suit your requirements. Click here for more information.

Ohakune - ATTENTION! - 11th June 2021

Ohakune - ATTENTION! - 11th June 2021

Ohakune - ATTENTION! - 11th June 2021
Return Train Travel, Stay at Powderhorn Chateau, National Army Museum and Ecological walk with Megan Younger
$1,349 Per 2 People

Book Now

2 People:
@ $1,349.00 each
Boarding at: