National Parks for Kids

National parks are great to discover nature in family National parks are great to discover nature in family

Looking for an adventure in the great outdoors? Head to your local national park! A national park is a government protected reserve designed to help preserve New Zealand wildlife or plants. These are usually open to the public and may offer a number of family activities including camping, hiking, boating and swimming.

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Information on national parks for kids in new zealand

Will Your Kids Enjoy a Visit to a National Park?

For a chance to get outdoors, learn about the bush and spend time together as a family, you can't beat visiting a National Park. Your family will benefit from being in the fresh air and enjoying a range of kids' activities including biking, walking and climbing. National parks are often set in areas of great natural beauty so you will probably experience stunning views and maybe even catch a glimpse of some specimens of local wildlife.

Many national parks are set up to protect a particular species of plant or animal and offer educational talks and tours. These can be a great educational opportunity for kids to learn about native New Zealand wildlife and caring for the environment.

National parks are good for kids who enjoy nature and like to be physical. They are a great way for the family to interact without the distractions of technology. Most national parks have picnic areas and many offer camping facilities. Some are well known eco-tourism destinations and provide full scale accommodation for guests.

How to Organise a Visit to a National Park with Your Kids

National parks are usually open all year round but some may be closed at certain times or under certain conditions such as high fire danger or during cyclone season. It is always best to check before you plan to visit. Most national parks close their gates overnight, usually between sunset and sunrise and if your car gets caught after hours there may be a fine or cost involved in having the gates unlocked!

Located in a hugely diverse range of areas, national parks can be coastal or inland, desert or mountainous. Some terrain can be difficult to navigate in an ordinary car so a 4 wheel drive might be your best bet to reach those tricky areas. It is important to be aware of any safety considerations associated with the region you are visiting and pay attention to advice or warnings from park rangers.

National parks are usually free to enter although there may be fees for parking and camping. Some have cafes and restaurants while others have only the most basic facilities.


Check the ActiveActivities directory for more information!

If you are planning to visit a national park it is important to dress appropriately for the weather. Make sure you wear sturdy shoes and bring hats and sunscreen for everyone.