Step into an ecological wonderland and marvel at the astounding diversity of New Zealand’s second largest national park.

Kahurangi means ‘Treasured Possession’ in Maori, and this park lives up to it’s name. It encompasses much of the north-western South Island, and has landscapes as diverse as high alpine plateaux of red tussock and herb fields, plus some of the deepest limestone caves in the country. Marble outcrops, natural stone arches and New Zealand’s oldest fossils dating back 540 million years, can also be found here.

Exploring the park’s 570 km of tramping tracks is the main attraction. Some of these are formed on ancient Maori greenstone (jade) trails, goldminer’s paths and early European explorer’s routes. The most popular is the Heaphy Track, one of New Zealand’s Great Walks. This 82 km, 4 to 6 day journey takes you from a goldmining valley over mountain peaks and open tussock downs, to luxuriant sub-tropical forests, and along a dramatic coastline. Other well-loved tramps in the area are Wangapeka and Leslie-Karamea Tracks, which penetrate a wilderness area inland from the West Coast. There are also numerous tracks in the Cobb Valley and Mt Arthur Tablelands. Other activities to be enjoyed within the park are rafting and kayaking on remote rivers, fishing in the Karamea River and caving in the extensive limestone regions. Access roads lead into the park from all the main gateway towns; Motueka, Takaka, Karamea and Murchison.

Kahurangi National Park is richly endowed with a great variety of vegetation in its dense forests. Some 50% of all New Zealand plant species can be found here. The park’s highest regions contain 80% of our alpine plant species. This treasure trove of flora is matched by the variety of wildlife. Over 100 different birds are present in the park including rare and threatened species such as the rock wren and great spotted kiwi. Our largest cave spider and twenty types of carnivorous snail also live here.

Be prepared to linger awhile in Kahurangi, as it takes time absorb the diversity of this beautiful place.

National Parks: Character, Features, Wildlife & Hikes

  • New Zealand National Parks

    Whanganui

    Cut loose in a canoe or ‘boot it’ deep into the interior of the largest tract of primeval lowland forest in the North Island.

  • New Zealand National Parks

    Tongariro

    Tread a path through the restless, contorted, moonscape terrain of New Zealand’s most spectacular volcanic parkland.

  • New Zealand National Parks

    Rakiura

    You are invited to visit New Zealand’s southernmost sanctuary and newest national park. It occupies the greater part of our third largest island.

  • New Zealand National Parks

    Te Urewera

    Welcome to the timeless, mist-shrouded valleys of the Whirinaki, Whakatane, Waimana and the jewel-like Lake Waikaremoana.

  • New Zealand National Parks

    Paparoa

    Witness the weird water-sculptured wonders of ‘Limestone Country’ on the wild West Coast of New Zealand.

  • New Zealand National Parks

    Mt Aspiring

    Journey into a tramper’s paradise of cloud-piercing mountains, one hundred glaciers, boulder-strewn rivers and dense rainforests.

  • New Zealand National Parks

    Westland Tai Poutini

    Soar high above the sparkling permanent snowfields, which feed giant ‘rivers of ice’ on New Zealand’s West Coast.

  • New Zealand National Parks

    Nelson Lakes

    If you would like to climb to ‘rocky mountain high’ from the valley below, then the ‘twin lakes park’ is the place to go.

  • New Zealand National Parks

    Kahurangi

    Step into an ecological wonderland and marvel at the astounding diversity of New Zealand’s second largest national park.

  • New Zealand National Parks

    Egmont

    Walk on the wild side by climbing the scoria-strewn slopes of a dormant volcano, which is ‘The Most Climbed Mountain in New Zealand’.

  • New Zealand National Parks

    Fiordland

    Gaze in awe at the world’s highest sea cliffs, which rise sheer out of the deep, silent waters of Milford Sound.

  • New Zealand National Parks

    Arthur’s Pass

    Welcome to a different world of rock, ice and snow, and a place where delicate mountain daisies grow.

  • New Zealand National Parks

    Aoraki Mt Cook

    Sample the high life on a grand scale, in the midst of a breathtaking glacial park - New Zealand’s most elevated playground.

  • New Zealand National Parks

    Abel Tasman

    Welcome to the wonderful world of the Abel Tasman - New Zealand’s smallest, sunniest and most popular national park.

  • New Zealand National Parks

    National Parks

    This guide to National Parks compiled by New Zealand’s Information Network as a means of introducing you to our top natural attractions. We will provide an overview of the character, striking features and wildlife of each park, and will outline the major walking and tramping tracks.