The Land >
Flora & Fauna
New Zealand's high rainfall and many sunshine hours give the country a lush and diverse flora - with 80 percent of the trees, ferns, and flowering plants being native. From the kauri forests of the far north to the mountain beech forests and alpine tussock of the Southern Alps, you'll find fascinating plants and trees in every region. You'll be awed by the majestic evergreen native forests that include Rimu, Totara, many varieties of beech, and the largest native tree of them all, the giant Kauri. Underneath the trees you'll find dense and luxurious undergrowth including countless native shrubs, a variety of ferns, and many mosses and lichens.
Taupo is the largest lake in New Zealand with 606 km. It is one of
the last wild trout fisheries in the world.
Bay in Southland is one of the most extensive and least disturbed
examples of a petrified forest (app. 180 million years).
Springs located near Nelson (North end of the South Island), are
reputedly the clearest fresh water springs in the world with an
outflow of approximately 2,160 million litres of water every 24
Pan Lake near Rotorua is the world's largest hot water spring
reaching a temperature of 200°C at its deepest point.
Tongariro National Park was the second national park to be
established in the world.
- New Zealand's most famous tree is a Kauri called Tane Mahuta. Named after the Maori god of the forests, Tane Mahuta stands over 51 metres high, has a girth of over 13 metres, and is believed to be over 2000 years old.