Wetlands you can visit
Sandspit, fresh and saltwater wetland complex
NZ’s longest sandspit. Designated both as a nature reserve and Ramsar site, due to its importance as a staging area for migratory shorebirds on the East Asia-Australasia migratory shorebird flyway. A total of 83 species of wetland birds have been recorded. Amongst its notable rare and endangered plant species are:
Wallking track (2.5 km) along the ocean beach. Beyond this, access is restricted to authorised tour groups and permit-holders to protect the delicate ecology of the area. Café at main carpark.
Pakihi and lowland sedge and swamp forest
Framed by striking limestone rock formations to the west, and draining into the Te Tai Tapu marine reserve at Westhaven Inlet to the north, this 400 ha swamp supports 54 bird species including:
Lodge, walks, picnic areas, interpretative signage, small information centre
Pupu Springs (Waikoropupu)
Natural freshwater springs
In the Waikoropupu Valley, water stored in the marble and limestone chambers under the world famous Takaka Hill emerges as springs of crystal clear, cool water. Water clarity has been measured at about 63 meters, a world record for fresh water.
These springs are the largest in the Southern Hemisphere, and are an example of a wetland type that is rare in NZ. The springs support a diverse flora and invertebrate fauna, including nationally unique mosses and liverworts.
Boardwalk to the springs and circuit route. Interpretation signs.
Google Earth Tour
Click here to take our Google Earth tour of wetlands in this region. Follow these simple steps. For best results select the Terrain box in the Layers folder on the right hand menu.
You will need to have access to Google Earth to run this programme. You can download it for free.
You can either view individual sites and associated information by clicking on them, or select the Play Tour button that appears when you click on the Tasman-Marlborough folder.