Icon sites tell a range of great stories about kiwi identity. The Department started developing these sites in 2003 in collaboration with local councils and communities.
Located in beautiful natural settings they have wonderful walks that can be enjoyed with family and friends. Visitors have the opportunity to discover some of New Zealand's heritage at the same time as experiencing the outdoors.
The afterlife is a spiritual concept shared by many cultures. Visit the site of departure for Māori spirits.
Ruapekapeka is the site of the last battle in the north (1845-46). As a defence against the British, Te Ruki Kawiti built tunnels, rifles pits and trenches surrounded by a palisade.
You can visit the historic Cape Brett Lighthouse that stands at the entrance to the Bay of Islands.
Find out about the history of North Head Historic Reserve including recent work to restore parts of the site.
Unlike most other bush tram routes, much of the Ongarue tram system survives unmodified, making it a nationally significant site which represents an important part of the timber industry and pioneering New Zealand.
Situated between Paeroa and Waikino, the Karangahake Gorge Historic Walkway follows the old railway line through the gorge. The walkway passes a number of notable rail and mining heritage sites.
Learn about the Waitawheta bush tramway that operated from 1898 to 1928. Today the historic tram route is a popular track for hearty and experienced trampers.
The Ohakune Old Coach Road links some fascinating pieces of New Zealand’s rail heritage through a spectacular part of Tongariro National Park.
Many battles were fought for the ownership of Otatara Pa. Stand at the top of one of the largest pa sites in New Zealand.
Forces of nature defeated servicemen returned from World War One. Go by jet boat or canoe to this graceful arch bridge abandoned in the forest.
Built in 1876 to house New Zealand's new central government. Visit New Zealand's largest and grandest wooden building.
Ship Cove was Captain James Cook’s favourite New Zealand base during his three voyages of exploration.
In New Zealand, the name Molesworth Station evokes the nation's high-country farming identity. Learn more about the station's history and present management of the area as a working farm, conservation site and recreation destination.
Built in 1939, the Godley Head coastal defence battery is ranked as one of the top ten New Zealand coastal defence heritage sites.
Premium coal mined from a lonely landscape in the clouds. Visit the dramatic location of the West Coast's leading coal mine.
Sheep farming has long been a key element of the New Zealand economy. Cycle 150km through traditional New Zealand farming communities and old gold mining towns.
Above Arrowtown is the partially restored and well interpreted Arrowtown Chinese Settlement. Learn more about the contribution made by the Chinese goldminers and business people to the region’s goldmining, cultural and business history.
Phone 0800 DOC HOTline (0800 362 468) 24 hour emergency number to report:
Sick or injured wildlifeWhale or dolphin strandings