Te Urewera National Park New Zealand

Te Urewera National Park covers a large expanse of remote forest, bush, and lakes in the North Island of New Zealand.

Te Urewera National Park, North Island
Te Urewera National Park Bush, North Island, New Zealand
Image by Adriel Kloppenburg

At over 2,000 square km it was given national park status in 1954 and is the biggest national park in the North Island at 212,673 hectares.

Urewera National Park is between the Bay of Plenty and Hawkes Bay on a road atlas. Map provided below.

Attractions in Te Urewera National Park


A lot of the land in Urewera is totally inaccessible.

This remoteness and inaccessibility is exactly what provides wildlife and native forest birds with heightened protection, living in this vast and rugged landscape where they can enjoy a large unpopulated area.

Native birds that are under threat and need protection in areas like this include kiwi, kaka, kokako, and whio / blue duck.

Native Plants

Native plant species to be found in Te Urewera National Park number more than 650! So if you are interested in New Zealand’s native flora you’ll have plenty to see here.


The attractions of this park include two stunning lakes, Lake Waikaremoana and Lake Waikareiti, the former being the larger of the two.

2200 years ago a landslide caused the Waikaretaheke River to be blocked at the location of a gorge. The result was an accumulation of a huge body of water, with a potential depth of over 240 metres, and the creation of Lake Waikaremoana.

Activities in Te Urewera

Walking Tracks

Urewera includes one of New Zealands well-known tracks for tramping, the 46km Lake Waikaremoana Track.

All backcountry huts along the track must be booked in advance with the DOC.

Short walks are available in the park, one of which goes up to Lake Waikareiti.

Boating and Kayaking

To explore the smaller Lake Waikareiti you can hire a boat from the Aniwaniwa Visitor Centre.

Most water craft are allowed on Lake Waikaremoana except jet skis. Kayaks can be hired.

Fishing and Hunting

You need a license to fish the lakes but you can purchase fishing licenses from the camp store.

Deer, pigs, and Possum cause significant damage to native trees and plants and therefore hunting of these animals is encouraged in the boundaries of the park. I don’t know what the rules and regulations are about hunting but I do know that a permit is required. So if you are interested you need to make enquiries about permits with the DOC.

National Park Safety

Outdoor safety awareness New Zealand Land Safety Code.

Check the Te Urewera weather forecast.

Private Maori Land

Some areas are privately owned Maori land, you must therefore stay on the tracks provided for you to use and not go wandering across land that may be private.

Accommodation in Urewera

There is a motor camp on the shore of Lake Waikaremoana that includes cabins, a store, and pitches for tents. This is a fully serviced site.

Camping sites, backcountry huts, and bookable Great Walk huts are available to trampers.

Te Urewera National Park Location Map

List of all national parks in New Zealand


Birds and Animals