Five New Zealand waterfalls not to be missed

Wairēinga/Bridal Veil Falls near Raglan is one of the most picturesque waterfalls in New Zealand.
LIZ CARLSON

Wairēinga/Bridal Veil Falls near Raglan is one of the most picturesque waterfalls in New Zealand.

There are hundreds of stunning waterfalls scattered about New Zealand.

Some tumble down from great heights while others cascade almost horizontally with huge force.

Only 20 minutes from Raglan you'll find one of the most picturesque waterfalls, Wairēinga/Bridal Veil Falls. An easy walk from the car park, there are viewpoints and lookouts along the way. A mighty 55-metre drop into a lovely blue pool, it's stunning in any weather. 

Featuring a perfect 151-metre vertical drop straight into the fiord below, the best way to experience Stirling Falls is ...
LIZ CARLSON

Featuring a perfect 151-metre vertical drop straight into the fiord below, the best way to experience Stirling Falls is on a kayak tour.

It's no surprise that Fiordland has some of the most epic waterfalls in Aotearoa, if not the world, thanks to the eight metres of rain it receives annually.

Milford is one of those places that's even more beautiful in the rain as hundreds of temporary waterfalls form on the sides of the mountains.

One of my favourite waterfalls is in Milford Sound itself, Stirling Falls. A perfect 151 vertical drop straight into the fiord below, the best way to experience Stirling Falls is on a kayak tour with Rosco's, paddling as close to it as you dare. 

The three-tiered Purakaunui Falls in the Catlins is off the beaten track.
LIZ CARLSON

The three-tiered Purakaunui Falls in the Catlins is off the beaten track.

One of Otago's greatest waterfalls, Pūrākaunui Falls, is a bit off the beaten tourist trail, in the Catlins at the bottom of the South Island.

A lovely three-tiered waterfall near Owaka, it's hidden away deep in the forest, giving it an otherworldly feel. especially if you have the place to yourself.

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Up to 220,000 litres of water a second tumbles over the mighty Huka Falls.
LIZ CARLSON

Up to 220,000 litres of water a second tumbles over the mighty Huka Falls.

Up to 220,000 litres of water a second tumbles through the Huka Falls on the Waikato River near Taupo, New Zealand's longest river.

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A popular spot to visit, there are plenty of great points around the falls themselves, otherwise you can take a jetboat to the bottom of the falls themselves.

Bright blue and furious, with only an 11-metre drop it initially looks almost tame until you realise the sheer force of the water going over them is enough to fill an Olympic-sized swimming pool in 11 seconds. 

The Devils Punchbowl Waterfall at Arthur's Pass is absolutely stunning, though a little scary in a torrential downpour.
LIZ CARLSON

The Devils Punchbowl Waterfall at Arthur's Pass is absolutely stunning, though a little scary in a torrential downpour.

One of the great things about hiking and exploring areas with waterfalls is that it doesn't usually matter if it's rainy or sunny. In fact, many places are even more beautiful in the rain because it makes the waterfalls even bigger and more dramatic, though caution is required in severe rain.

The first time I visited the Devils Punchbowl Waterfall in Arthur's Pass, it was in heavy flood and downright scary but  in tamer conditions  it's really one of the most stunning waterfalls I've been to.

 - Stuff

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