New Zealand's 13 national parks showcase more than 30,000 square kilometres of diverse, natural scenery ready to explore by foot, boat, car or air.
Spend time in New Zealand's national parks and you'll begin to understand the soul of this place. Our national parks are treasured and preserve our natural heritage, forests, wildlife and landscapes, close to - if not exactly, as it was before people arrived here.
You can read about and view each of the national parks in more detail below.
Abel Tasman – Known as the finest coastal walk in the country with golden beaches and sculptured granite cliffs surrounded by diverse native forest. Featuring the Abel Tasman Coast Track Great Walk.
Aoraki/Mount Cook – New Zealand's great alpine park with the highest mountains and the largest glaciers.
Arthur's Pass – A park of contrasts, with dry beech/tawhai forest in the east and luxuriant rainforest on western slopes.
Egmont – Dominated by the 2518m high volcanic peak of Mt Taranaki (also known as Mt Egmont), which offers a challenging climb and spectacular views.
Fiordland – One of the great wilderness areas of the Southern Hemisphere with The Kepler, Milford and Routeburn tracks, each highlighting different aspects of this spectacular park.
Kahurangi – Covering the West Coast at the top of the South Island it includes the Heaphy Track, the longest of the country’s Great Walks.
Mount Aspiring – Straddling the southern end of the Southern Alps it’s a walker's paradise and a must for mountaineers. The three largest of 100 glaciers in the region flank Mount Aspiring itself.
Nelson Lakes – Protects the northern-most Southern Alps and offers tranquil beech forest, craggy mountains, clear streams and lakes both big and small.
Paparoa – Most famous for the Pancake Rocks and blowholes of Dolomite Point, near the settlement of Punakaiki.
Rakiura National Park – Explore pristine beaches, sheltered inlets, and coastal forest, and see seals, penguins, kiwi, weka and many other birds. Makes up about 85 percent of Stewart Island/Rakiura.
Tongariro – A dual World Heritage area and a place of extremes and surprises; featuring active volcanoes and the Tongariro Northern Circuit Great Walk.
Westland Tai Poutini – Extends from the highest peaks of the Southern Alps to the rugged and remote beaches of the wild West Coast.
Whanganui – Tramping tracks through wild lowland forests and river trips down the mighty Whanganui are popular activities.
For more information on each of the National Parks visit the Department of Conservation(opens in new window).