Egmont National Park, New Zealand

Egmont National Park is located in New Zealand on the west coast of the North Island. It is dominated by the beautifully symmetrical Taranaki volcano, whose relatively easy ascent is also the main attraction of the national park.

Egmont National Park is located in New Zealand on the west coast of the North Island and is one of our top 10 places to visit in New Zealand. The absolute ruler of Egmont National Park is Mount Taranaki, a dormant volcano whose summit reaches a height of 2,518 metres.

Advertisement

PICTURES: Mount Egmont National Park

Photo gallery: Egmont National Park

Egmont National Park was established in 1900, making it the second oldest national park in New Zealand after Tongariro National Park. It was actually named after Mount Taranaki, which was named Mount Egmont by the explorer Captain Cook.

Covering an area of 33,500 hectares, Mount Egmont National Park includes Taranaki and two older volcanoes, Kaitake and Pouaki. However, these are both extinct. The boundaries of the national park around the Taranaki appear as if drawn with a compass; from the air, you can see the dark green patch of dense rainforest on the light green farmland in the surrounding area, as well as the snow-white dot of the Taranaki peak in the middle.

Directions to Egmont National Park

In 1881, an exact six-mile (just under 10km) radius around Mount Taranaki was declared a forest reserve, New Zealand - © FRASHO / franks-travelbox
© FRASHO / franks-travelbox

The National Park can be reached via three roads. Either via the scenic Manaia Road to Dawson Falls at 900 metres, via the Egmont Road to North Egmont or via the Pembroke Road to the Stratford Plateau, which serves as a car park for the Taranaki ski area and offers absolutely breathtaking panoramic views.

Hiking in Egmont National Park

The hiking trails in Egmont National Park in New Zealand can be explored in the course of one-hour walks or mountain tours lasting several days - © patjo / Shutterstock
© patjo / Shutterstock

The most popular activities in the national park are, of course, trekking and hiking. The best place to find out about all the options is in North Egmont at the visitor centre. Most of the hiking trails start there. Depending on your time and mood, you can choose from over 300km of marked trails, from one-hour walks to fern-covered waterfalls to five-day mountain tours.

Hikes through the national park at lower altitudes first lead through lush rainforest, whose growth is favoured by the warm coastal climate and frequent rainfall. Amidst the dense vegetation, gushing waterfalls, idyllic river courses and magnificent viewpoints appear again and again. The further up you go, the more alpine the vegetation becomes.

Fairytale forests in Egmont National Park

A short walk through dense forest leads to Dawson Falls, located at about 900 meters in Mount Egmont National Park, New Zealand - © FRASHO / franks-travelbox
© FRASHO / franks-travelbox

The Goblin Forest in the middle of the mountain flanks is particularly worth seeing with its gnarled and mossy trees. In the midst of this enchanting fairytale forest, you expect to scare up an elf from behind a stone at any moment.

Advertisement

Special features of the flora of Mount Egmont National Park are the absence of beech trees in the rainforest and the Ahukawakawa Swamp, located at over 900 metres. This has a large number of endemic plants that have adapted to the acidic soil and low temperatures.

Tip: Be sure to bring rain gear, Mount Egmont National Park is one of the rainiest regions in New Zealand! Since the warm air that rises above the sea and moves inland is stopped at Taranaki and rains down, there is up to 7 metres of rainfall a year in the village of North Egmont!

Summit assault of the Taranaki

Mount Taranaki in New Zealand is perfect for mountaineering, skiing, trekking, hiking or just as a unique postcard motif - © FRASHO / franks-travelbox
© FRASHO / franks-travelbox

The biggest tourist attraction in Mount Egmont National Park is of course the majestic mountain itself. To climb Taranaki, you don't need any mountaineering experience, at least in summer between December and April , but you should be prepared for any weather changes and at least have mountain hiking experience.

With average physical fitness, the way to the summit and back can be covered within a day. Mount Egmont National Park is one of the few places on earth where you can combine climbing a two-and-a-half-thousand-metre peak or skiing downhill with a visit to the beach in one day. It is only a 30-minute drive from the national park to the New Zealand coast.

Related links:

Official site of Mount Egmont National Park

Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement