Ohakune - Freedom To Choose

Fancy a true alpine lodge style getaway? Journey by train to the picturesque township of Ohakune and take in the mountain and the beautiful surrounds.

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The perfect escape combining a stay at the acclaimed Powderhorn Chateau, combining all the facilities of a hotel with the ambiance and appeal of an alpine lodge. This tour gives you the freedom to choose which activity you would like to do in Ohakune; head up the mountain for some action, try some local walks and dining, have a go on the Old Coach Road, or simply relax and unwind in the confines of your well appointed accommodation, its all up to you to choose!

For some local guidance on exciting things to do, contact the Ohakune i-SITE for some ideas. 

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

Wake up to the crisp and clean mountain air, today is all about what you choose. But first, tuck into a full cooked breakfast and a brew then take some time to choose what activities you might like to do. The Ohakune i-SITE can help you with ideas, or simply take in the natural beauty of this lovely place and go on some local walks. Perhaps hire bike and trek around town, visit the cafes or restaurants. Book on a shuttle bus to the mountain for some fun or simply head back to your well appointed room to relax, unwind and take in a good book or three. This getaway is what you make of it, no timetables, just the things you want to do.  

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 awaits. Perhaps take this morning time to see the last sights of Ohakune before having to return to your train for the journey home. 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.
  • Cooked breakfast Saturday and Sunday.
  • 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 - Freedom to Choose - 11th June 2021

Ohakune - Freedom to Choose - 11th June 2021

Ohakune - Freedom to Choose - 11th June 2021
Return Train Travel, Stay at Powderhorn Chateau, Pick your own Ohakune activities!
$899 Per 2 People

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2 People:
@ $899.00 each
Boarding at: