Kahurangi National Park
Kahurangi National Park is something of a hidden gem compared to its more popular cousin the Abel Tasman Coastal Track. But if you’re visiting Nelson Tasman, Kahurangi is well worth your time.
Kahurangi is New Zealand’s second largest national park, spanning 450,000 hectares. It has 570km of tramping tracks which traverse some of New Zealand’s oldest and most stunning rocks, marble and karst land forms and includes the famous Heaphy Track, designated a “Great Walk” by New Zealand’s Department of Conservation.
The 82 km Heaphy Track includes diverse and ruggedly beautiful landscapes such as craggy ranges, alpine meadows, valleys of native palms and a spectacular coastline. It connects the Aorere Valley in Golden Bay with Karamea on the West Coast of the South Island. During certain winter months it is open for mountain bikes – please check with the Nelson i-SITE for information about the exact months as they can change from year to year.
The Heaphy Track is suitable for moderately fit people of all ages. The track can usually be walked in 5-6 days.
Kahurangi National Park stretches from Golden Bay in the North, to Murchison in the South and across to the West Coast and is home to the largest remaining population of Great Spotted Kiwi. If walking isn’t quite your cup of tea then a helicopter flight is a great way to see Kahurangi’s stunning natural landscapes. You can even spot sites used in the filming of The Lord of the Rings movies.
Tips for visitors to Kahurangi National Park:
- You need to be moderately fit
- Book your bunks in the Department of Conservation huts on the track before you start your trip
- Bring insect repellent or bug spray
- Wear sturdy footwear and bring a good quality raincoat
- Take all of your rubbish away from the park with you when you leave
- If you’re unsure of water quality always boil, filter, or treat it and do your bit to keep water in the park clean