Nestled in the hills behind the village of Hanmer Springs is a forest park. Hanmer Forest Park to be precise. Scattered with a selection of New Zealand’s oldest exotic plantings, and accessible by a range of different tracks, an adventure through the picturesque woods should be on everyone’s to-do list that visits Hanmer Springs.
The various tracks can be explored by bike or on foot, are well sign posted and range from 5 minutes for those looking for a quick stroll to one hour for those looking to explore what the park has to offer.
Highly recommended is tackling Conical Hill, an iconic holiday pastime. The trip to the 550 metre summit takes around an hour and at the top you’ll enjoy a magnificent view of the region. Once covered in tussock, this has now been replaced by a number of exotic trees including western hemlock, Lawson’s cypress, giant fir, Japanese cypress and Atlas cedar.
With many magical spots to sit back and soak up the fresh Canterbury air, why not take a book or a picnic to unwind and listen to some of the native birds present in the air including tuis, fantails, kereru and bellbirds.
There are also larger grassed areas so plenty of space for flying kites, to kick a rugby ball around, or to get a game of cricket going.
Comfortable footwear is suitable for most walks within the park, however if you are planning on tackling some of these longer treks such as Chatterton River, Mt Isobel or the Waterfall Tracks then sturdy footwear is essential.
If you are looking for accommodation close to the Forest Park that is also close to the famous Hanmer Springs Hot Pools, be sure to check us out - Hanmer Springs Top 10. As you can see from the map below we are handily located to explore everything that Hanmer has to offer.