Where to go in NZ

Die 10 schönsten Wasserfälle Neuseelands

! Aktualisiert am 25. Januar 2021

Wenn es etwas gibt, auf das sich alle Neuseelandreisenden einigen können, dann sind es die Wasserfälle des Landes: spektakulär, aber auch derartig häufig vorkommend und intensiv als Ausflugsziele beworben, dass man nach einigen Wochen einfach keinen mehr sehen will.

Wenigstens zehn Wasserfall-Bilder und -Erinnerungen bringt garantiert jeder Neuseelandreisende mit nach Hause; seien es die touristenüberschwemmten, weiß schäumenden Huka Falls bei Taupo, die ebenso berühmten Stirling Falls im Milford Sound oder die meines Erachtens ein wenig überschätzten McLean Falls in den völlig unterschätzten Catlins. Dazu kommen noch zig kleinere, aber durchaus hübsche Wasserfälle an jedem beliebigen Wanderweg, im Stadtwald oder auf Zeltplätzen (zum Beispiel dem schönen Haruru Falls Holiday Park in Paihia).

Die 10 schönsten Wasserfälle in Neuseeland: Nordinsel

Tourismus-Highlight: Huka Falls

[Google Maps]

Marokopa Falls

This wide, classical, rectangular-shaped year-round 30m waterfall threw a bit of mist even from its easily accessible lookout just 10 minutes from the road.

While most tourists come to this part of the Waikato Region to see the Waitomo Glowworm Caves, this waterfall further to the west put on a show of its own as one of North Island’s more reliable and picturesque waterfalls.

Adding to the scenic allure of this waterfall, we also checked out the eccentric Mangapohue Natural Bridge, which formed from a collapsed cave. We spotted rocks with fossils of ancient sea life on this side excursion.

[Google Maps]

Matamata: Wairere Falls

This skyscraping waterfall with a towering drop of 153m fell from such heights that we even spotted it from the Waikato Plains while driving between Matamata and the trailhead.

Both times we saw this majestic falls from up close, we gained the direct view at an overlook half-way up the mountain.

We could have tested ourselves by climbing to the top of the waterfall for regal views of the Waikato Plains expanse. However, we contented ourselves with the direct views as the falls did enough to impress us without going through the extra effort.

[Google Maps]

Forgotten World Highway: Mt Damper Falls

With a plunge of 74m, it is also one of the North Island’s tallest waterfalls.

Indeed, it felt like we had gone off the beaten path to find this gem. And we benefited from the breathtaking bush and white cliff scenery along with the serenity that one could only attain by straying away from the usual crush of the tourist-beaten paths.

On a return visit, things have changed and it appeared that it felt a little less off the beaten path than before, but it still retained its tranquility and relative wildness nonetheless.

[Google Maps]

Tongariro: Mangawhero Falls, Tawai Falls und Tawa Falls (Gollum Pool)

[Google Maps]

Gisborne: Rere Falls

…und Rere Slide!

[Google Maps]

Die schönsten Wasserfälle auf der Südinsel

Arthur’s Pass: Devil’s Punchbowl Falls

With a towering drop of 131m amidst the stunning alpine backdrop of the Arthur’s Pass section of the Southern Alps, it was certainly the star attraction of the rugged Arthur’s Pass National Park.

Given the various ways we managed to experience the falls (as we were able to get close enough to the base of the falls to feel its spray as well as get a nose-bleed view from across the valley), we found this falls to be very memorable.

[Google Maps]

Kaikoura: Ohau Falls

mit Seehund-Babys!!

Ohau Falls was a thin but pretty 25-30m waterfall that turned out to be quite the popular spot when we made a visit here in early January 2010. We had been told that New Zealand fur seals would sometimes swim their way up to the falls (said to be in the Winter), which would make this waterfall very unique in that aspect.

The walk was pretty developed as it was a mix of boardwalk and bridges along with conventional dirt trail. After a little over five minutes of walking (the sign estimated 10 minutes in each direction), we arrived at the very busy plunge pool and base of the Ohau Falls.

[Google Maps]

Milford Road: Humboldt Falls im Hollyford Valley

This giant 275m waterfall was one of Fiordland National Park’s better kept secrets. When we first saw it back in 2004, it was known mostly to trampers setting out on the Hollyford Track or to those self-driving and willing to take the detour from the Milford Sound Highway. Yet this waterfall epitomized the spectacular bush scenery nestled amongst majestic peaks so prevalent in this remote part of the Southern Alps.

This easy, well graded walking track from the Hollyford Road takes you on a short climb through rainforest to the lookout of the impressive Humboldt Falls. (1,2 km return) From the end of the unsealed Hollyford Road, this well graded track takes you on a short climb through rainforest to the lookout of the impressive Humboldt Falls.

Milford Sound: Stirling Falls und Bowen Falls

As the first of two permanent waterfalls situated in the impossibly beautiful Milford Sound, I gave it special attention because it used to have walking access to its base. Unfortunately, they closed that path indefinitely just prior to our arrival in late 2004. That said, this gorgeous 161m waterfall still benefited from bush-clad mountains serving as a backdrop when we viewed it during the popular Milford Sound Cruise.

[Google Maps]
Die Stirling Falls im Milford Sound

Die Stirling Falls im Milford Sound

Plunging off a hanging valley between the Elephant and Lion Mountains deep in the Milford Sound, this 155m waterfall was the other of the permanent waterfalls we encountered while touring the mythical Milford Sound. Unlike the look-but-don’t-touch experience of Bowen Falls, the cruises that we went on actually tried to drench people willing to stand outside the front of the boat as the nose of the vessel would go directly beneath its falling waters.

Catlins: Purakaunui Falls und McLean Falls

[Google Maps]

Wasserfälle richtig fotografieren

Ist man nicht gerade ein begnadeter Naturfotograf, sehen Wasserfälle auf Fotos irgendwie immer weniger beeindruckend aus als “in echt”. Das Donnern, das Rauschen und das nassgesprühte Gefühl kann man halt schlecht einfangen…

Wenn ihr schauen wollt, was Neuseeland an Wasserfällen zu bieten hat – und euch das Thema noch nicht bzw. nicht mehr zum Hals heraushängt, könnt ihr auf World of Waterfalls noch einiges lernen. Die Seite ist nicht übermäßig schick, scheint aber mit Herzblut geführt und zeigt eindrucksvoll, was man im Internet so alles finden kann.

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