great barrier reef
| on the move
coast regional information | back to visitor information
New Zealand, the 'West Coast' generally refers to the narrow strip of
land between the South Island's Southern Alps and the Tasman Sea.
Coast is memorable for its mountain peaks, massive glaciers, bizarre limestone
landscapes, mysterious lakes and raging rivers, lush rainforest and a
magnificent, wild coastline. It contains the largest area of protected
land of any region in New Zealand and provides access to five of New Zealand's
13 national parks.
natural landscape offers good accommodation, fine foods and festivals.
You can raft an underground cave, hike over a glacier, kayak a stunning
lake, pan for gold and taste the traditional West Coast delicacy, whitebait.
In the townships of Westport, Greymouth and Hokitika, you can learn about
the West Coast's colourful past and shop for pounamu (greenstone or jade).
suggested itineraries that include the West Coast, please click here.
- Try rafting,
caving, jetboating or even cave rafting for some underground fun in
are also some great walking tracks.
- Take a
guided walk on the Fox or Franz Josef glaciers or take a helihike to
the top levels of the glacier.
at the view of the mountains from Lake Matheson (near Fox Glacier).
If conditions are good they will be perfectly reflected in the lake.
- St James
Church is famous for its view of the Franz Josef Valley through the
the local delicacy - whitebait.
on the region's gold rush history (old machinery, tunnels and ghost
towns are everywhere) where you can still go gold panning.