Waterfalls in New Zealand

by James Chuang
(New South Wales, Australia)

I am quite impressed with the website. Been a waterfall fan myself. I felt I finally found a group that understands what I like!

If you catch a train from Auckland and Wellington, there are many nameless waterfalls all the way, especially after Tongariro National Park, and Wellington (All the way till the end, there are waterfalls 5km from Wellington rail station) big or small waterfalls en route beside the railway line, some aren't as spectacular as the ones in your book, but still special!

Also between Taihape and Hunterville, the train mandering along the top of Rangitikei river valley


Some part of this stretch you get to see waterfall all along the river valley! there are spectacular waterfalls along Midland mainline (Tranz Alpine train) as well in South Island.

James Chuang

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Comments for Waterfalls in New Zealand

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Sep 08, 2008
Bluff Falls
by: World of Waterfalls

Thanks for your insight David!

I had read about the existence of Bluff Falls on the World Waterfall Database and was curious about it when planning the trip to New Zealand back in 2004.

Unfortunately, with the limited time on holiday, we had to pick and choose where we wanted to go, and apparently, it was very nontrivial to get to Bluff Falls so we had to pass on it.

Still, I'd very much like to make an adventure out to there on my next trip to New Zealand. We'll have to see when that will be though...

Sep 08, 2008
Seen a lot of them
by: David Phillips

I became very interested in waterfalls at the tender age of 11 when I crossed Victoria Falls for the first of 39 times. Have even walked along the rim during the dry before it became a fashionable tourist attraction.

Like you I have assembled a huge database (2250) of falls around the world and have to agree in most part with your top 10 choices for many countries.

My database for NZ is 491 vs the recognised Gazette of 256. Some of the best are hard to find and was astonished to see Mt Damper in your collection. It's a long hike down that back road.

Has a website half built but never finished it so hat's off to you for your collection. Walked the Wilmot Pass in 1961 to Doubtful Sound (last one of two [Andy Blair] in and out before they closed it)and was taken to some place behind an island where there is a fall reputed to be 2500'.

It was icy cold and we had to try and swim into a narrow cleft where the fall came from a tarn at the top. So powerful and misty was impossible to see but is marked on topo map.

Bluff Falls info from World Database comes from me. I read a 1924 tramping book that related how a group had camped at night near a stream and when they woke they realised they were on the edge of a 400-500m precipice. This was before the Bluff Hut was built. Tramper friends of mine say the falls are impressive after rain with about 4 bounces to the bottom and they climb up alongside it as the shortcut route to the hut. Understand the stream is the source of the Hokitika River.

Keep up the good work.

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