Just a short drive in your Greymouth will bring you to Lake Mathieson, home to stunning scenery reflected in deep clear waters. Famous for its mirror-like reflections of nearby Mount Cook and Mount Tasman, Lake Mathieson is a popular day trip destination for tourists looking to get out in the New Zealand wilderness.
The beginning of the Lake Mathieson loop track which leads to the Lake is at the end of Lake Mathieson Road. And is approximately 2 hours’ drive from Hokitika, and 2 hrs 45 minutes from Greymouth.
Aside from taking a lot of pictures of the Lake – what else is there to do at Lake Mathieson?
One of the best things to do at Lake Mathieson is to enjoy the nearby walks. The most popular walk is the full Lake Circuit Track that makes a nice loop around the edges of the lake. This walk takes approximately 1.5 hours and is 2.6 kilometres in length and is considered fairly easy going.
Open every day from 8am until late, the Lake Matheson Café is right next to the start of the Lake Mathieson walkway. Great coffee, great views and an awesome outdoor deck area make the café the perfect place to refuel after your walk.
The Café serves breakfast, lunch and dinner during the summer months and restricts its hours to 8am to 3pm during the winter months serving only breakfast and lunch. Don’t miss the ‘Big Bacon, Hash Brown & Egg Butty’ – a classic kiwi take on a toasted sandwich – this one will definitely keep you going for the day!
Not that great at photography? Head on over to the ReflectioNZ Gifts and Gallery for a great selection of giftware, homeware and souvenirs to take home with you – including Pounamu jewelry.
The Gift store is open every day from 8.30am to 8.30pm during November through to March, closing at 4.30pm for the rest of the year.
Being one of New Zealand’s most photographed Lakes be sure to remember to bring your camera! Here are a few other things you should know when visiting Lake Mathieson.
You may not know it but when visiting Lake Mathieson you’re in Glacier Country! This is one of the tourist hotspots on the West Coast and one with many exciting adventure tourism activities and attractions.
The Fox Glacier is located very near Lake Mathieson and offers guided glacier tours and scenic flights. Many people combine a visit to the Fox Glacier and Lake Mathieson into the one day trip.
The Franz Joseph Glacier is also nearby and provides kayaking, jet boating, whitewater rafting, clay target shooting and of course, scenic flights over the glacier – for those seeking a bit of action and adventure.
After your walk around Lake Mathieson relaxation is probably what you are after. Stop off at the Franz Joseph Hot Pools on the way home and enjoy the tranquil warm waters surrounded by lush rainforest. Open year round, there are three large pools to choose form with three smaller private pools also available at an extra cost.
Want to go all out? Feel totally rejuvenated with a relaxing massage provided on-site by professional massage therapists and then soak away your worries in the hot pools. What better way to end your day trip to Lake Mathieson and Glacier Country.
Need transportation to make the most of the area? View our full range of affordable Greymouth rental cars and explore the best of Greymouth at your own pace.
Check out our blog for more New Zealand travel and holiday advice.