New Zealand offers breathtaking natural beauty and abundant wildlife on its stunning coasts, perfect for an unforgettable honeymoon getaway. Choose accommodations tailored specifically to meet your preferences – beachfront resorts to intimate eco-lodges tucked into the landscape offer unforgettable memories.
Australia boasts 13 national parks, five of which have been recognized as World Heritage Sites. These national parks provide great hiking, boating and river activities as well as habitat for native wildlife and breathtaking mountain vistas.
Fiordland National Park
Fiordland National Park lies in New Zealand’s southwestern corner and forms an integral part of Te Wahipounamu World Heritage Area. Renowned worldwide for its otherworldly grandeur, Fiordland boasts spectacular fiords, towering mountains, deep branching lakes and lush forests that attract millions every year – with Milford Sound and Mitre Peak among many iconic sightseeing spots in its vicinity.
Outdoor adventures such as hiking and kayaking are plentiful here, from ancient beech-and-podocarp forests, unique alpine species, vast wetlands and ancient beech and podocarp forests to unique alpine species and vast wetlands. Visitors to this park are likely to see plenty of native wildlife including endangered species like kakapo (the world’s only flightless parrot) as well as Mohua or yellowhead sparrow cousin Mohua; also regular visitors include cheeky Kea parrot (the world’s only alpine parrot found outside Australia)!
Due to its size and remoteness, it is best explored via guided tour or multi-day hiking trip with an expert local guide. Over half a million visitors annually visit the park with most concentrated in Te Anau down to Milford Sound; many tours include this scenic wonder as part of their itinerary. Our guests can hop aboard one of the day cruises offered on Milford or Doubtful Sound cruises or stay overnight in Milford or Manapouri to fully experience this vast wilderness area.
Te Urewera National Park
Te Urewera Forest Park in the North Island’s largest native forest park offers visitors an experience reminiscent of Jurassic Park with lakes, walks and ancient forests that will satisfy outdoor enthusiasts of any sort. Complete with areas covered with mossy trees for stunning Kodak moments and exploring opportunities, Te Urewera offers plenty of exciting adventure possibilities.
Tuhoe (‘Children of the Mist’) people reside here, forming strong ties to this land that give it an intoxicatingly remote, primal atmosphere – creating a profound experience you probably didn’t even know was lacking! This area evokes feelings of primal communion you might not even realize were missing!
Since 24 July 1954, Lake Waikaremoana and Lake Waikareiti catchment areas had been gazetted as national park areas. By 1957 proposals had begun for expanding this national park further by including land north of Ruatahuna.
Te Urewera National Park features mountainous terrain with mountain ranges and picturesque waterfalls, set amidst lush forested wilderness consisting of kohekohe (cypress), beech, rata, tawa, pukatea rimu and karaka forests; there is also open grassland subalpine scrub and alpine herbfields on Mount Manuoha; native animal life includes feral cats pig goat red deer sheep and possum; native bird species such as ruru takahe bellbirds and New Zealand Pigeons.
There are plenty of activities in the national park, from exploring stunning Lake Waikareiti with its lush forest views, taking on the Great Walk or simply relaxing at Aniwaniwa Museum or Visitor Centre. Lake Waikaremoana also makes for a fantastic fishing spot and numerous rental companies offer rod rental at Lake Waikaremoana.
Tongariro National Park
Tongariro National Park lies near the center of New Zealand, showcasing active volcanoes, crater lakes, fields of tussock grass and beech tree forests. While most visitors come for just the famed Tongariro Crossing hike, taking at least two days here would allow visitors to discover everything this beautiful park has to offer.
Ski lodges and Department of Conservation huts operate within the park, as well as campsites. It’s recommended to book online for one of these huts or campsites ahead of time as the popular Tongariro Crossing trail can get very busy at times.
Tongariro National Park is best visited from November to May when conditions are generally dry and easy to walk in the region. Unfortunately, however, due to snow and icefall on Tongariro Circuit this time of year it must remain closed; visitors should take note of this before venturing out in the cold weather.
Tongariro National Park is located 4-5 hours drive from Auckland and Wellington, and flights depart daily from both cities to Taupo and Mt Ruapehu. Additionally, the main train line between these capitals stops in Whakapapa Village and Okahune for ease of travel if you do not own a car. Bring hiking boots and warm clothing in any season – temperatures in New Zealand can change quickly!
Mount Cook National Park
Mount Cook National Park in New Zealand is an incredible sight. A blend of rock and ice, it features 19 peaks over 3000 meters (9840 feet). These towering mountains tower above massive glaciers that carve their way down deep valleys; Tasman is New Zealand’s longest glacier at 27 kilometers (17 miles). Be sure to stop off at Peter’s Lookout to capture iconic images of blue lake surrounded by mountains, as well as take in Lake Pukaki; which many consider one of New Zealand’s most breathtaking lakes!
Providing the weather is clear, drive to Tasman Glacier Lake to take in an up-close look at icebergs – this should be on every visitor’s agenda during summer (and sometimes winter) travels! Additionally, visit Church of the Good Shepherd – widely considered to be New Zealand’s premier church.
Mount Cook National Park’s centerpiece, an impressive snowy peak known as Mount Cook, stands 3,724 meters (12,218 feet). As Australasia’s highest mountain, this landmark attracts hikers of all levels from gentle day walks to more challenging hikes that require mountaineering experience. Meanwhile, surrounding park trails cater for gentle day strolls as well as more rigorous treks that demand mountaineering skills.