Dictionary of Geotourism

2020 Edition
| Editors: Anze Chen, Young Ng, Erkuang Zhang, Mingzhong Tian

National Park System, New Zealand

Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-981-13-2538-0_1697

In 1887, New Zealand established the fourth national park in the world, namely, the Tongariro National Park. New Zealand currently has 14 national parks, which are administered by the Department of Conservation under the 1980 National Park Act. The national park system has two important goals. First, it aims to preserve the unique landscapes, natural characteristics, and scientific value of ecosystems of national significance. It also provides the public with free access to parks on the basis of protecting the local flora and fauna and the overall interests of the park. Within the system, 550 km2 is categorised as special protection areas, which only allow those with a special permit to enter. The wilderness areas established in the park only allow walking trails and simple houses to be built for wildlife monitoring and scientific research. Tongariro, Westland Tai Poutini, Aorak Mount Cook and the Fiordland National Park have been included on the World Heritage List.

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