Visitor reviews for Turoa Ski Resort

Turoa Ratings

Overall: 3.6. Based on 45 votes and 38 reviews. Vote

Snowsure: 3.7

(1) Occasionally gets enough snow for skiing, (2) is often closed due to a lack of snow, (3) occasionally suffers from a lack of snow, (4) rarely suffers from a lack of snow, (5) Turoa is snowsure even in the poorest seasons.

Variety of pistes: 4.1

(1) The ski runs are featureless and unvaried, (3) the ski runs are varied but not extensive enough for a week, (5) Turoa has diverse and interesting pistes including forests and high alpine terrain.

Off-piste: 3.8

(1) No off-piste worth mentioning, (2) off piste is out-of-bounds, (3) some varied offpiste that stays fresh for one or two days, (5) a vast array of off-piste routes that can stay untracked for several days.

Scenery: 4.5

(1) An ugly resort in a bland setting, (3) average mountain views and resort, (5) a spectacular setting and a beautiful / historic resort town.

Access: 3.3

(1) At least one overnight stop, (2) requires a whole day, (3) requires more than half a day – you may have time for a few turns (4) arrive by lunchtime and ski all afternoon, (5) there is a main airport within an hour of Turoa.

Public Transport: 3.4

(1) There are no buses or taxis to Turoa, (3) there are slow or infrequent buses / trains available, (5) getting to the resort is easy with frequent bus / train connections.

Accommodation: 4.2

(1) No places to stay in/near Turoa, (3) a few places to stay in the resort, (5) a wide variety of accommodation suitable to suit all budgets.

Cheap Rooms: 4.3

(1) No budget accommodation available, (3) just one or two hostels so book ahead, (5) several cheap hostels and pensions available.

Luxury Hotels: 3.4

(1) No luxury accommodation available, (3) just one or two luxury hotels so book ahead, (5) several up-market hotels in Turoa.

Ski in/Ski out: 2.0

(1) The ski area is located far from any accommodation, (3) a free ski bus takes you to the ski area in a short trip, (5) Ski-in ski-out accommodation is available.

Childcare: 3.8

(1) There are no child care facilities at Turoa, (5) the resort has excellent child-care facilities including at least one reasonably priced creche.

Snowmaking: 3.8

(1) Turoa relies entirely on natural snow, (3) there are just a few snow cannons, (5) there are snowmaking facilities on all pistes.

Snow Grooming: 4.2

(1) There are no snow groomers at Turoa, (3) occasionally some pistes are left ungroomed and in a poor state, (5) all the runs at Turoa are groomed daily.

Shelter: 2.3

(1) there is nowhere to ski when it is windy or visibility is bad and lifts often shut, (3) there are some trees for poor visibility but main lifts sometimes close, (5) Turoa is mostly in forest where you can ski in flat-light and windy days, lifts rarely close.

Nearby options: 3.0

(1) If snow conditions are poor at Turoa, it will be poor everywhere nearby, (3) there are good alternatives within an hours drive, (5) other locations on the same lift pass provide a rich variety of snowsure ski conditions.

Regional rating: 4.2

(1) Turoa usually has poor snow conditions compared to other resorts in region, (3) has average conditions for the region, (5) usually has the best snow conditions in the region.

Lift Staff: 4.3

(1) The staff at Turoa are rude or unhelpful, (5) lift staff at Turoa are pleasant, cheerful and eager to help.

Crowds/Queues: 2.8

(1) the resort is always busy and there are usually long lift queues, (3) it is quiet apart from occasional weekends and school holidays, (5) it is uncrowded and lift queues are very rare.

Ski Schools: 3.8

(1) No ski schools available, (2) one or two ski schools but local language only, (3) a few ski schools but book early for multi-lingual instructors, (4) plenty of ski schools and multi-lingual instructors available, (5) excellent ski schools with friendly multi-lingual ski instructors.

Hire and Repairs: 4.5

(1) Nothing can be sourced, not even ski-wax or ptex. (3) there are some ski shops but rentals need to be booked in advance, (5) good quality ski equipment can be purchased or hired and overnight repairs are possible.

Beginners: 3.7

(1) Beginners can only watch others ski and snowboard, (3) a few gentle slopes but beginners will get bored in less than a week, (3) Vast areas of gentle terrain.

Intermediates: 4.3

(1) No intermediate terrain at Turoa, (3) intermediate skiers will get bored after a few days, (5) vast areas of cruising runs.

Advanced: 4.5

(1) Nothing for advanced skiers and snowboarders, (3) enough steep terrain for a few days with some good offpiste, (5) Enough steep terrain and offpiste areas to entertain advanced skiers for at least a week.

Snow Park: 3.7

(1) Not even a kicker at Turoa, (3) average sized park quite well looked after, (5) huge park area and expertly crafted pipes, jumps and boardercross trails.

Cross-country: 2.0

(1) There is nowhere to go for cross-country skiing around Turoa, (3) there are some cross country trails available, (5) the area features many spectacular and well maintained cross-country trails.

Luge/Toboggan: 2.6

(1) No designated luge or toboggan runs, (3) there are toboggan runs that open quite often, (5) Turoa has long and well maintained luge / toboggan facilities suitable for all ages.

Mountain Dining: 3.4

(1) Nowhere to buy food by the pistes, (3) some places to eat up on the mountain but they are often busy and expensive, (5) there is a variety of excellent mountain eateries right next to the slopes to suit all budgets.

Eating: 3.4

(1) Bring your own food, there isn't even a shop. (5) A wide variety of places to eat and drink in the resort, from fast food to fancy restaurants.

Apres-Ski: 3.8

(1) Nothing to do, not even a bar, (3) there are a few bars in the resort but nothing special, (5) clubs and bars stay open until very late and have a friendly atmosphere.

Other Sports: 2.4

(1) No sports facilities at all apart from ski lifts, (3) resort has just a small public swimming pool, (5) resort has all kinds of sports facilities, including a full-size swimming pool.

Entertainment: 3.3

(1) Besides the snow and walking there is nothing to do here, (3) the non-skier will find things to do for few days but may become bored after a week, (5) the resort area is a fascinating place to visit, regardless of winter sports.

Winter Walks: 3.6

(1) Very limited walking and no snowshoe trails, (3) a couple of designated scenic walking/snowshoe trails, (5) extensive and diverse winter walking trails for all abilities.

Ski Pass Value: 3.4

(1) A 1 week ski pass is overpriced compared to the number of lifts available, (3) the ski pass is averagely priced and covers a reasonable number of lifts, (5) ski passes are excellent value for money and cover a lot of lifts spanning a big area.

Value (National): 3.4

(1) Overall, Turoa is one of the most expensive ski resorts in the country and not worth the money, (3) overall represents average value for money, (5) overall offers the best value resort in the country.

Value (Global): 3.4

(1) Overall, Turoa is one of the most expensive ski resorts in the world, (3) overall it offers pretty average value for money compared to resorts from other countries, (5) internationally the resort offers excellent value for money.

Show all 35 ratings

September 12, 2011
Brams from Ski New Zealand New Zealand
Ruapehu as a whole can offer all levels of crazyness from 100ft cliff drops to amature magic carpet runs. Our family and many others alike including some of our foreign brothers and sisters love and respect this mountain immensely for its unpredictable nature on bad days but also its unsurpassed beauty on good days. The variability of the market is recognised by locals as it's not only the consumers and mountain staff who suffer, it's the whole National Park area! However, the outgoing nature of most locals and seasonal workers will always ensure, even when the conditions are bad, there's still plenty of fun to be enjoyed in and around the Park. Mum and Dad have skied on Ruapehu for ever, I have been up there for 20 years and we have all witnessed it at its best and at its most deadly worst but that's all part of immersing yourself in nature and a huge motivating factor to most who pursue snow sports. So, I guess what I am really trying to say is, if you gunna let weather ruin your experiences in alpine locations, it's probably a better idea next year for you to go to the tropics and pursue a different kind of recreation. P.S. Lifts will be upgraded over coming years, plans in the mix now.
August 29, 2011
Lee from Ski New Zealand New Zealand
Turoa has the potential to be a great ski field and has some excellent attributes. Firstly it has a wide variety of runs and caters well for all levels of skiers and snowboarders. The lifties, instructors and other workers are great, really friendly and helpful. Where Turoa fails to deliver is the facilities it offers. The lift system is antiquated and poorly managed. Often on clear days, the higher lifts do not open until the late morning or early afternoon, leading to 30 minute + queues on the other lifts whilst you look at all the great runs you can't get to! Considering that Turoa does suffer from bad weather, the cafe facilities are inadequate to cope with the number of people on the mountain although the refreshments on offer are good. Having skied for 30 years all over the world and at Turoa for the last 8 years, I find this ski field great but incredibly frustrating. It could be so much better if it was run properly.
August 12, 2011
Paul from Ski Australia Australia
Boarded and skied Turoa through August 11th with my wife and thoroughly enjoyed it. A bit different to Oz ski fields and the drive up the Old Mountain Rd is truly beautiful. It can get windy and wet, but it offers some great long sweeping runs with tight chutes and drop offs for any intermediate snow bunnies, plenty there for the black run punters as well. Not a huge range of runs for the beginners, but that's not a bad thing. Friendly staff, and cold beer available on the mountain, and if you're staying in Ohakune, you're in for a treat. Its a wicked little village full of nice laid back folks and a real off beat vibe, complete with funky night spots and a bizarre local radio station that refuses to tell you the right time of day!
July 20, 2011
Simon from Ski New Zealand New Zealand
Although it is true that this mountain can be badly effected by weather, several of the below reviews are extremely inaccurate. I live in Ohakune and have skied all around the world, and on a powder day on Ruapehu there is nowhere that you can find more variable and unique terrain, and yes it does get powder, you have just got to stay on the leeward slopes (powder blows across ridges onto these slopes as with many places in the world,) where it can pile up very deep, and for snowboarders there are massive wind lips to destroy, and cliff drops a plenty. The hike to the summit is one of the coolest hikes/runs in the country as well. If you are planning a trip here make it a week day and try to get here during spring (late Aug-early Oct) where the snow softens in the afternoons and the weather is more reliable. Peace
July 03, 2011
Damo from Ski Australia Australia
We've just spent a weekend at Ohakune/Turoa at the start of the season. Having boarded/skied only in Europe before this, mostly at Cervinia, plus Meribel and a few others, NZ is.... different. I like No Frills, and am an intermediate boarder, so Turoa is fine for me. When we were there they only had the lower half open (a 4-seat and 3-seat chair), but we got half-price day passes for it. The snowboarding is ok - runs were mostly fairly narrow, and weren't too congested, but this is early season with only 1-2 car parks full and zero wait on the lifts. We had 2 blue-sky days - perfect - but the snow machines had to work hard, and spots of rock, ice and earth made it tricky sometimes. The cafe at base had OK food - I really wanted some hot tasty cheesy pasta as is common in France/Italy, but had to settle for a packaged hot pie or cold sandwich instead. None really tasty, but $5 each, so not too pricey either. The views - I've only skied the European Alps, so boarding on the sole snow-capped volcano in the centre of snow-free plains is a strange experience! Seeing the plains and layers of cloud below us was pretty beautiful, but also never changes! You can't really roam and travel as you can in some Alpine resorts, with that constant view wherever you are. One thing that did stand out was the service; the ticket and rental staff were all really friendly and helpful without exception. Maybe it's because they're Kiwi, maybe it was unrushed and early in the season, but it was noted, and stood out.
September 14, 2009
MARTIN from Ski United Kingdom United Kingdom
Turoa and Whakapapa have potential to be good ski fields. However, the poor weather is the biggest problem and the ancient lift system is a real pain. If you can only get up at weekends then you will have the crowds to deal with. The queues for the lifts are not too bad, if all lifts are running, but if the big 6 seater is not running then the lower and mid mountain become a huge bottleneck; you can wait 30 minutes for the lift. They need to invest some money on making the mid mountain lifts more efficient and make the beginners slopes better. All in all, not a bad place to ski and board if you get good conditions. But don't book a holiday from Oz or anywhere else in the world to come here. Chances are the mountain at Turoa will be closed due to wind or poor visibility.
June 29, 2009
Gary from Ski New Zealand New Zealand
In my opinion Turoa is so much better than Australia; cheaper, better snow, better people and better nightlife.
June 16, 2009
cy from Ski New Zealand New Zealand
For those international skiers coming to NZ to ski, here is what you need to know about conditions at Mt Ruapehu (Turoa and Whakapapa). Generally the weather conditions are poor, although when it's fine it is really beautiful and the scenery is amazing. For those of us who live locally we would normally plan on going based on a weather forecast. Don't listen to anyone who thinks you get genuine powder skiing at Ruapehu. Anyone who says that is telling a lie. I have been going to Ruapehu for nearly 25 years and never had more than "boot deep" light powder. Turoa and Whakapapa are extremely exposed to winds from all directions. Whenever it is cold enough to snow with low humidity there is always a lot of wind. After a good snowfall, conditions are typically windblown with dry snow in sheltered valleys and is wind buffed on the ridge lines. Turoa and Whakapapa provide excellent grooming of the pistes so are epic for beginner and intermediate skiers. There is nothing particularly steeping at Turoa, but Whakapapa does have some good steep stuff for more advance skiers. In Summary: Poor weather Excellent scenery Superb pistes (except after rain and then a freeze) Good snowmaking systems Generally poor off-piste conditions. If you want genuine powder conditions and are in the advanced category go to any of the following: Treble Cone, Mount Hutt, Ohau, Craigieburn, Broken River, Olympus and Temple Basin. They are listed in order of remoteness. During a good season you can expect knee to thigh deep dry snow 5 times a season at Craigieburn, Broken River, Olympus and Temple.
May 24, 2009
d from Ski New Zealand New Zealand
Turoa is my home. Without a word of a lie it has some of the sickest terrain in the world. Everything from wide open groomers for putting down that perfect pencil line carve to super steep narrow faces where every turn counts. The field is huge and well laied out. Mum and sis can ride a groomer down, dad and the boys can scare themselves just off the side of the main runs and all can meet at the lift and cafes ready for another run. Off the to the east of Turoa ski field is the glacier. Check ski patrol warnings and take a local as if you miss the exit it can be a long, long walk home. This is a natural powder trap: wide open and no trees for riding as fast as you can. To the west are the old lava flows which make hundreds of wind lip cornices and waterfalls for launching off of but look before you leap as some of them are truely huge. With a quick hike you can reach the crater and see the stunning crater lake. This active volcano can change the colour in the lake within minutes. Make sure you have time to get down before the sun sets as the snow can set hard fast. From the top on a clear day you can see the ocean on both sides of the island and watching a sunset over Mt Taranaki is a truely once in a life time experience. If nice sight-seeing isn't your thing Turoa has some of the best shaped parks anywhere. There are a number to choose from, from beginner at the Winter Garden to 50+feet in the XXL park; rail lines change throughout the season keeping it interesting. On weekends lift lines can get big but an easy fix to this is a private lesson. Not only do you get pointers but you get a person that knows the mountain and its hidden treasures as well as getting to bypass those lift lines. Lessons can be booked at the Winter Garden so you don't need to return to the base of the mountain.
March 01, 2009
jack0fshad0ws from Ski New Zealand New Zealand
Mt Ruapehu (Whakapapa and Turoa ski fields) is not the mountain that you can plan to go to a few weeks in advance. You need to grab the right opportunity/conditions. It will then be totally epic (measurable to Whistler/Blackcomb, Banff & Kicking Horse resorts in Canada). You can find slopes for any ability there. Choose the wrong time and you'll be stuck with limited visibility and so-called 'breakable crust:)'. On 'bluebird' days the views at Turoa are amazing (I have been snowboarding there for 7 years and the views are still breathtaking and ever changing). Cheers P.s. Weekends are useless at Turoa because of the crowds.