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Where to see kiwi birds in New Zealand

null  Where to see kiwi birds in New Zealand Where to see kiwis
Whether you’re a Kiwi yourself or are just popping in for a visit, seeing the New Zealand bird icon in person is an exciting experience. This flightless, though adorable, bird is becoming increasingly rare, with the Department of Conservation noting only around 70,000 are left in the country.

So on your New Zealand bird-spotting road trip, make sure you take the time to see the kiwi in person at one or more of these locations.

North Island

In captivity

First and foremost, make sure you stop by Auckland Zoo for a diverse animal experience. Here you can see the brown kiwi, as well many of its native bird brothers and sisters.

A close-up experience can also be found at Otorohanga Kiwi House and Native Bird Park, which claims it is the best place to see the bird in the country.

Make sure you also visit:

  • Rainbow Springs, Rotorua
  • Wellington Zoo

In the wild
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If you have the time, trek through Northland’s Trounson Kauri Park. Here you might be able to spot the brown kiwi in its natural habitat, alongside other endangered species such as kukupa and pekapeka.

South Island

In captivity

For a unique New Zealand animal experience, head just a 30 minute’s drive outside of Christchurch’s city centre to New Zealand’s only open range zoo: Orana Wildlife Park. Set on this 80-hectare plot of land is a cosy little Nocturnal House, where you can try and spot a kiwi bird, and possibly even a morepork, too.

If you are on an adventure holiday in Queenstown, make sure you take the time to pop into Kiwi Birdlife Park, just next to the base of the Skyline gondolas. Here you can watch a kiwi bird feeding show, where a keeper will talk to you about the kiwi’s wonderful traits in a specially designed birdhouse. This activity is free with general admission.

Make sure you also visit:

  • West Coast Wildlife Centre, Franz Josef (where you can see the rare Rowi kiwi!)
  • The National Kiwi Centre, Hokitika

In the wild

In the tiny little township of Okarito, just north of Franz Josef, you’ll find the HQ for Okarito Kiwi Tours. This tour sets off at dusk (the birds are nocturnal, after all) and claims to have a 98 per cent success rate for finding kiwis. If you’re lucky, you’ll even catch sight of some of NZ’s other native species, all in their own natural West Coast environment.

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