I had been told that hiking Rangitoto was a rite of passage for all Auckland visitors as it is the youngest volcano in the area. The description, however, of a barren rocky landscape with no water sources and hot temperatures due to the black volcanic rock, was less than inviting. I was happy to find that Rangitoto was not nearly as desolate as I had heard, in fact it turns out to have the largest forest of pohutukawa trees in the world. Other plants that we see around New Zealand are found on the island but interestingly they grow in different ways here - for example the epiphytes we usually see high in trees grow on the ground directly on lava rocks. Hiking was tougher here thanks to the rocks which caused us to slip on the steeper paths and we were pretty tired by the end, but overall was definitely a worthwhile trip.
This review is the subjective opinion of a TravelPod member and not of TravelPod.com.