New Zealand Waterfalls: Misty Curtains in the Home of Middle-Earth

Milford Sound

The collection of New Zealand Waterfalls encompasses almost every imaginable variety.

They range from the short, powerful, yet colorful Huka Falls to the tall and majestic Sutherland Falls. There are waterfalls that run hot like Kakahi Falls, and there are giant waterfalls fed by the melting snow like Devil's Punchbowl Falls. There are also waterfalls near beaches such as Kitekite Falls as well as waterfalls in dense native rainforests like Mokau Falls and silent fiords like Browne Falls.

Like its diverse waterfall collection, New Zealand's landscape is just as diverse. I'm sure this was one of the primary reasons why Peter Jackson chose to feature his home country in The Lord of the Rings movies - thereby letting the world in on its best kept secret. The diverse collection of scenic features include...

  • Serene Native Rainforests
  • Colorful Volcanic Moonscapes
  • Soothing Sandy Beaches
  • Unique Thermal Wonderlands
  • Mythical Fiords
  • Towering and Snow-covered Alpine Mountains
  • ...and of course, New Zealand Waterfalls
I haven't even mentioned the friendly and laid back people, the Maori culture, and small town rural charm!

The list goes on and on, and you'll have to give New Zealand some time to explore to understand why it was the ideal choice for the idyllic, J.R.R. Tolkien-inspired Middle-Earth. In fact, we loved the country so much that we published a guide book about waterfalls in New Zealand. Browse through these pages to virtually experience Middle-Earth and its misty curtains...

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Below are the New Zealand Waterfalls that we have been to. Click on a region or a waterfall for more details about them.

Waipunga FallsNorth Island: The waterfalls found here range from coastal hangouts beneath Kauri trees not far from the city to technicolor volcanic landscapes and geothermal features. Even though this island is the more populated of the two major islands, we still found most of the attractions remain unspoiled, and this was especially true of the waterfall attractions.

Click here to read more about the area and see its waterfalls.
Click here to jump directly to the area's waterfall list.

Devil's Punchbowl FallsSouth Island: This waterfalls found here tumble and plunge from towering snowy peaks throughout the Southern Alps as well as some more tropical spots to the island's far north. The waterfalls range in character with as much diversity as the wild extremes we've experienced here. Perhaps that's why this island is the less populated of the two main ones, but that also meant wildlife sightings and the unpredictability of Nature were also on full display.

Click here to read more about the area and see its waterfalls.
Click here to jump directly to the area's waterfall list.

Rere FallsReader Submissions: We can't possibly visit every single waterfall in New Zealand. Fortunately, there are readers kind enough to share their knowledge and experiences by writing up their own guides for those waterfalls that we haven't been to.

Click here to submit your own write-up.
Click here to jump directly to the reader submissions waterfall list.

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If you'd like to know more about New Zealand, check out the following links...

A Guide to New Zealand Waterfalls (Johnny T. Cheng): This one-of-a-kind 288-page themed travel guide is an invaluable companion, trip planner, and keepsake. With each waterfall covered, you will find...
Fore Word Magazine Book of the Year Award Winner
Indie Excellence 2007 Book Awards Finalist
  • full color photos
  • detailed color maps
  • author ratings and lists
  • detailed driving directions
  • interesting facts and tidbits
  • index and color references

The Kauri CoastNew Zealand's Other Attractions: There's more to the Land of the Long White Cloud than waterfalls. If you're curious about the country's other natural attractions or you're suffering from fatigue of New Zealand Waterfalls, have a look! [read more]

The Tongariro CrossingNew Zealand Travel Stories: Read about the stories behind the World of Waterfalls. See New Zealand through our eyes while becoming more informed about this beautiful country. In this section, you will find travel journals that will leave you laughing, smiling, curious, or just about all the emotions you'd expect when you're traveling to an unknown place. [read more]

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If you already have a waterfall in mind that you'd like to see details about, browse the list below...


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Fore Word Magazine Book of the Year Award Winner
Indie Excellence 2007 Book Awards Finalist

There's lots to say about New Zealand and its waterfalls. Click on one of the following links to jump to the section you're interested in...

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Featured Visitor Stories
or Comments

Cold doesn't even begin to describe it
August of 2007, my dad and I took a short trip to NZ, which I've always wanted to do. We were the only ones booked on the trip around lake Taupo and Tongiriro park that day...[more]

Rere Falls
Rere Falls are in North Island, to the west of Gisborne and to the south of SH2. Joyce and visited these falls towards the end of March 2010...[more]

Maungaharakeikei Falls, North Island, New Zealand
The little known Maungaharakeikei Falls (pronounced Mong-ah-hah-rah-kay-kay)are probably the North Island of New Zealand's least known major falls...[more]

Billygoat Falls, New Zealand
In the Kauearanga Valley near Thames at the start of the Coromandel peninsula is a mighty falls named Billygoat Falls. The Department of Conservation states...[more]

Bigger than most people think
Just wanted to mention that the bottom 3 tiers of Kite Kite Falls are the most viewed but have attached a pic of the whole waterfall. There is another...[more]

Wairere Falls
I was at these waterfalls near Matamata during early April of 2007, my first visit to New Zealand. I found them purely by accident while trying to find somewhere to park for the night...[more]

Wairua Falls
We visited them back in April 2006, and with beginners luck found them with a reasonable flow. I have since read that a...[more]

Waitangi Falls
These are the Waitangi Falls in the Ruakituri Wilderness area. The only way to get to these falls is to walk in. It is a no fly area. The Ruakituri River...[more]

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