Alpine Fault Tours Rams Head

Stand astride the Pacific and Australian continental plates.


Alpine Fault Tours will take you on a two hour discovery adventure to see where the Pacific and Australian continental plates meet. Visit the drilling site and learn how it plays a vital role in seismic monitoring and see how two active plates come together and shape the land around them. The Alpine fault line is a natural wonder of our planet that until recently has only been accessible to international geologists studying and monitoring the site. Tour hosts, Gray and Vicki, enthusiastically share their knowledge of the fault with visitors from all over the world. Their commentary and guided walk also give an informative brief of the unique New Zealand flora and fauna along the way.

The Gaunt Creek exposure site is one of the most significant sites in the world where middle earth has been thrust to the surface from 30 kilometres below by the power of the colliding tectonic plates. The fault line is like nothing you have seen before. It’s unusual colour and texture created by pressure and heat must be seen to be believed. It is the only naturally exposed fault line site on the globe making it a magnet for scientists from all around the world. The Gaunt Creek seismic observatory has provided global scientists with a quantum leap forward in their knowledge about earthquakes. The site is the first place in the world where scientist have been able to drill right through an active fault line.

We look forward to showing you the bigger picture of how the earth works from up close. The tour departs from the Alpine Fault Tours office on the main street of Whataroa and the follows the Waitangi-taona Valley to Gaunt Creek. It is suitable for all ages and a reasonable level of fitness is required. Tour duration may be approximate due to weather conditions.


Take a peek at the short video tour.



This was a fascinating tour. Previously I had not understood the relationship between the Australasian Plate and the Pacific Plate, but now I do because I have seen and touched the collision zone of the two continents at Gaunt Creek with Alpine Fault Tours. Great for all ages.

Elisabeth Frankish

Had a great time on the Alpine Fault Tours today. The information was really interesting, its even still good in the rain. :-)

Caitlin Goodall

*5star* Fantastic if you’re interested in geography, nature and anything to do with the outdoor world!

Amazing to see the fault up close and an informative tour given by the owners of the company, highly recommend for people who want to investigate plate tectonics

Benjamin Webb

Dear Gray and Vicki,

Terrific! And very professional.

Many thanks for your company last Monday. That was a highlight for all 6 of us.

The rest of our excursion went very well indeed. No problems and perfect timing.

Hamish Campbell

This was an awesome little tour stop for us. We both geeked out took a ton of pictures. We had fun jumping between “land masses” and playing games across tectonic plates. I mean, who wouldn’t right? So glad we were able to find this little gem. If you’re thinking of going on this tour, I highly recommend it.

Lakewood’s Wanderings and Scribbles blog


John Fegyveresi

An enjoyable tour and not something you see every day!

This is a very friendly and professional tour, a short trip on a bus followed by a walk to see the fault. Along the way and once there the scenery is awesome. Our guide explained everything very well and we found the trip very enjoyable and educational.

Mark N – Trip Advisor

“Fascinating tour”

Kiwi Nomad’s Wanderings

Awesome experience

Brilliant tour, unique occurance, highly informative, very friendly guides. An unmissable experience whilst in the area. Thankyou

Julian Thomson, Educational outreach officer for GNS Science.
“It is absolutely exciting when you’re there, to be able to stand with one foot on either plate”

01Donala – Trip Advisor

Excellent tour of an exposed plate boundary

Beautiful scenery on the way to the exposed Australian and Pacific plate boundary. My wife and I are both Geo’s so we enjoyed the educational aspect of the tour. But you do not need to have a geological background to appreciate the significance of the site or the natural beauty of the surrounding area.

Cade G Trip Advisor


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Please note the tour is restricted by numbers so booking is essential to avoid disappointment.


Adults: $50 per person including GST.
Students and Children: $20 per person including GST.

Family and Group concessions are available. Special group tours and rates may be made by arrangement.

Complete and submit the form below to make a booking.
(Please note owing to time constraints it may take up to + 12 hours to respond to your request. If you have not received a response please check your Junk/Spam Mail, or feel free to contact us by the alternative phone, text or email).

Or click to make a booking on Bookit  Alpine Fault Tours Bookit




Contact us by phone in New Zealand:
Free phone: 0800 556 244
Ph: 03 7534236
Text: 027 209 6018

Ph: +64 3 7534236
Text: +64 27 209 6018


Email: Due to spam mail, please use the booking form above to contact us by email.
(Please note owing to time constraints it may take up to + 12 hours to respond to your request. If you have not received a response please check your Junk/Spam Mail, or feel free to contact us by the alternative phone, text or email).


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Due to the access track to the Gaunt Creek Alpine Fault Exposure crossing the Eatwell family’s property in the Waitangi-taona Valley in Glacier Country, Gray and Vickie Eatwell have been fortunate to meet many of New Zealand’s eminent ecological scientists visiting the world renowned site.

This amazing opportunity to meet globally recognised scientists who are uncovering many of Mother Earth’s secrets about the creation of the magnificent Southern Alps led Gray and Vickie to become absorbed by the wonders they were experiencing. In creating Alpine Fault Tours, Gray and Vickie’s passion to expose the big picture of Glacier Country by giving all visitors the chance to share the unique secrets, became reality.

Both Gray and Vickie have a background of guiding tourists in Milford Sound, from which experience they realized the impact the Alpine Fault Exposure has in understanding the massive powers that created the ever inspiring wonders of the Alps, Glaciers and the Fiords that they love.

As a natural consequence they set up Alpine Fault Tours to enable them to share the passion that their good fortune has given them.

To share this you are invited to join them in the belief that your visit to Glacier Country will be fulfilled by the experience.

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