New Zealand National Parks


About New Zealand National Parks National Parks

New Zealand boasts 14 spectacular national parks, each offering a diverse range of natural landscapes and outdoor adventures. From the towering peaks of the Southern Alps to the pristine beaches of the Abel Tasman Coast, these parks showcase the country’s stunning beauty and rich biodiversity.

Tongariro National Park, the first national park in New Zealand, is renowned for its volcanic terrain and sacred cultural significance. Fiordland National Park boasts breathtaking fjords and remote wilderness areas, while Aoraki/Mount Cook National Park showcases the country’s highest peak and glaciers.

Visitors can explore pristine forests, turquoise lakes, and rugged coastlines, with opportunities for hiking, camping, kayaking, and wildlife watching. New Zealand’s national parks are not only havens for outdoor enthusiasts but also vital sanctuaries for native flora and fauna, contributing to the country’s global reputation as a nature lover’s paradise.

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New Zealand National Parks's National Parks

Abel Tasman National Park split apple rock up close

Abel Tasman National Park

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Aroki Mount Cook National Park valley and mountain landscape

Aoraki Mount Cook National Park

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Fiordland National Park mirror lakes

Fiordland National Park

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Tongariro National Park

Tongariro National Park

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1. How many national parks are there in New Zealand?

New Zealand has 14 national parks. These parks encompass diverse landscapes, including rugged coastlines, pristine forests, active volcanoes, and glaciated mountains.

Each national park offers unique opportunities for outdoor recreation, conservation, and appreciation of New Zealand’s natural beauty.

2. What is the largest national park in New Zealand?

The largest national park in New Zealand is Fiordland National Park, located in the southwestern part of the South Island. It covers an area of approximately 12,607 square kilometers (4,868 square miles).

Fiordland National Park is renowned for its stunning fjords, dramatic waterfalls, rugged mountains, and diverse wildlife. It is also home to iconic attractions such as Milford Sound and Doubtful Sound, which are considered some of the most beautiful fjords in the world.

The park offers numerous hiking trails, scenic cruises, and opportunities for wildlife viewing, making it a popular destination for outdoor enthusiasts and nature lovers alike. Fiordland National Park is also designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site due to its outstanding natural features and ecological significance.

3. What is the smallest national park in New Zealand?

The smallest national park in New Zealand is the Abel Tasman National Park, located at the northern tip of the South Island. It covers an area of approximately 225 square kilometers (87 square miles).

Despite its small size, Abel Tasman National Park is renowned for its golden beaches, turquoise waters, and lush coastal forests. It offers a range of outdoor activities such as hiking, kayaking, camping, and wildlife watching. The park’s mild climate and stunning scenery make it a popular destination for both domestic and international visitors.

The Abel Tasman Coast Track, one of New Zealand’s Great Walks, traverses the park, providing hikers with breathtaking views of the coastline and opportunities to explore its pristine natural environment.

4. What was the first national park in New Zealand?

The first national park in New Zealand is Tongariro National Park, established in 1887. It is located in the central North Island and covers an area of approximately 795.98 square kilometers (307.00 square miles).

Tongariro National Park is recognized for its volcanic landscapes, including active volcanoes such as Mount Tongariro, Mount Ngauruhoe (also known as Mount Doom in “The Lord of the Rings” films), and Mount Ruapehu, the highest peak in the North Island. The park is culturally significant to the Māori people and holds dual UNESCO World Heritage status for its natural and cultural values.

Tongariro National Park offers a range of outdoor activities, including hiking, skiing, mountain biking, and sightseeing, attracting visitors from around the world to its unique and diverse landscapes