PRESS RELEASE: Department of Conservation
The Department of Conservation (DOC) has had a wide response to its call for initial submissions for potential new Great Walks, with 30 tracks from across the country proposed.
“We would like to thank everyone who has taken the time to put together a submission. We received an extensive geographical spread of ideas, with 20 walks located in the North Island and 10 in the South Island,” says DOC’s Director of Tourism, Recreation and Heritage Gavin Walker.
“Our existing Great Walks are some of New Zealand’s most popular and well-known visitor experiences. They are a fantastic way to connect with our remarkable natural environments.”
“With the increase in New Zealand’s population and rise in international visitor numbers, combined with more people seeking out stunning experiences in nature, some walks are reaching capacity at peak times. Through this public process we are exploring opportunities to expand the network in places where there is local support and showcase other beautiful but lesser-visited parts of the country. We also want to give New Zealanders Great Walks options closer to home and at quieter times of the year,” says Gavin Walker.
A panel comprising representatives from our partners Federated Mountain Clubs, New Zealand Recreation Association, New Zealand Māori Tourism, Tourism New Zealand, Air New Zealand, Tourism Industry Aotearoa, as well as DOC, assessed all proposals in December. These organisations brought a range of knowledge and perspectives to the discussion which was informed by objective analysis of the proposals against the selection criteria (provided by consultants).
The panel has identified a number of walks that require further investigation and analysis. We are currently working with the new Minister of Conservation to confirm the approach to the next phase, and the timing of further decisions. Once this has been done we will be able to provide the next steps and which walks will be considered further. The Department is also working to keep those who submitted initial proposals updated on progress.
“The intention now is to undertake more analysis into the feasibility of those walks still under consideration. These need to rate highly against our selection criteria and offer New Zealand the greatest benefits from being including in the Great Walk network,” says Gavin Walker.
Walks submitted in initial proposals:
|Kaimai Ridgeway||Bay of Plenty/Waikato|
|Tarawera Trail||Bay of Plenty|
|St James Walkway||Canterbury/West Coast|
|Lake Coleridge to Lake Kaniere (Pounamu Trail)||Canterbury/West Coast|
|Akaroa (Christchurch to Akaroa)||Canterbury|
|Ruapehu (Round the Mountain)||Central North Island|
|Kaimanawa / Central Plateau Walkway||Central North Island|
|Tongariro to Turangi to Taupo (T3)||Central North Island|
|Coromandel Forest Walk||Coromandel|
|Coromandel Coast Walk||Coromandel|
|North Western Ruahines||Manawatu|
|Queen Charlotte Track||Marlborough|
|Oke Bay to Cape Brett||Northland|
|Te Paki Coastal Walk||Northland|
|Kauri Coast Track||Northland|
|Hump Ridge Track||Southland|
|Tararua Range (Holdsworth to Kaitoke)||Wairarapa|
|Tararua Range (Waiohine to Waingawa)||Wairarapa|
|Tararua Range (Mt Bruce to Kaitoke)||Wairarapa|
|Old Ghost Road||West Coast|