nzbirds >   birding (NZ birdwatching) >   birding sites

Waipoua Forest Park and Trounson Kauri Park

Waipoua Forest Park and Trounson Kauri Park  (1st page) Directions/Transport Site map Birds found here Photos / Images Reviews/Trip reports
Link to DOC:
Waipoua Forest Park
Link to DOC:
Trounson Kauri Mainland Island
Photograph: Kauri tree in the Trounson Kauri Park
Print: Curtis fuchsia

Waipoua and Trounson Kauri forests are found in the Kauri Coast area. Waipoua, and the nearby forests of Mataraua, Waima, and Trounson make up the largest remaining tract of native forest in Northland. In Waipoua Forest you can walk to Tane Mahuta–the largest living kauri.

Trounson Kauri Park is a 450-hectare forest reserve restoration project. It has been managed as a 'mainland island 'since 1995 and is home to several threatened species, such as North Island brown kiwi.

There are numerous tracks throughout.


The Northland area including the Waipoua valley has a long history of Maori occupation. Local Maori tradition, the records of early European explorers and archaeological evidence all show that the area in the past supported a large and thriving community, based on fishing, shellfish gathering, forest produce and a sophisticated agriculture.

The arrival of Europeans resulted in a massive exploitation of the kauri forests, which was accelerated by the demand for cleared farmland. The forests of Waipoua were at first saved from destruction by their remoteness. Waipoua itself was purchased by the Crown in 1876 but logging continued through the 1940s when a campaign against logging resulted in the creation of the 9,105 hectare Waipoua Sanctuary in 1952. Protective measures over other kauri forests gradually


Kauri logs — a print from Thomas Kirk's "Forest Flora of New Zealand"
increased until 1987 when all remaining Crown kauri forests came under the protection of the Department of Conservation.

Trouson Kauri Park's history is slightly different. In 1890, when the timber industry threatened to virtually wipe out Northland kauri forests 3.34 hectares was initially set aside by the Government of the day. An early settler and saw miller James Trounson added a further 22 hectares to this initial gesture.

Following the establishment of a Scenic Preservation Club, Mr Trounson offered to sell another 364 hectares of forest land to the Government for the value of the trees alone. It was officially opened as Trounson Kauri Park in 1921.


(page last updated  16 July 2011)