November 2006, updated 2011 and 2018
This document sets out the Department of Conservation’s intentions for managing Tongariro National Park.

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There are three documents relating to this plan – the original plan and the partial reviews in 2011 and 2018:


The Tongariro National Park Management Plan ('the plan') has been prepared in accordance with the National Parks Act 1980 and sets out the Department of Conservation's proposed intentions for managing Tongariro National Park.

Tongariro National Park is an outstanding international site with values unique in New Zealand. Its landscape and cultural values attract hundreds of thousands of visitors each year. With these visitors come issues, including conflict between users, impact on the environment and the need to maintain protection of the taonga acknowledged by the Gift from the Tūwharetoa people to the nation, which formed the nucleus of the park.

There is a special relationship between the iwi of the Volcanic Plateau and the mountains of Tongariro National Park. The relationship is a direct connection between today's people and their ancestors. The Ngāti Tūwharetoa and Ngāti Rangi people are the kaitiaki of the park.

This plan expresses the department's intent and directions for management below the strategic level of the Tongariro/Taupō Conservation Management Strategy. It is consistent with the General Policy for National Parks 2005 and with the National Parks Act 1980.

The park community and Tongariro/Taupō Conservation Board participated actively in the development of this plan to ensure the park's ongoing protection for future generations. The New Zealand Conservation Authority approved the plan having regard for the views of the Minister of Conservation.

Background to the 2010/2011 partial review

The 2010/2011 partial review of the Tongariro National Park Management Plan was prepared in accordance with sections 46 and 47 of the National Parks Act 1980. It reviewed sections of the existing Tongariro National Park Management Plan 2006 that were no longer working or necessary due to increased knowledge and/or changing circumstances.

The five policies and/or sections include:

  1. Removal of Mountain Biking on concessions and event management on the Old Coach Road and Desert Road to Pillars of Hercules tracks;
  2. Removal of the Transport Concession Limit for the Tongariro Alpine Crossing (TAC);
  3. Removal of 04-05 Financial Returns to set TAC Passenger Limit;
  4. Allowing Over-Snow Passenger-Service Transport Use within Ski Areas; and
  5. Removal of the Sole Winter Transport Operator on Bruce Road.

The Department prepared the partial review of the management plan in consultation with key stakeholders, including the Tongariro Taupo Conservation Board, iwi, concessionaires and other interested groups and individuals via a discussion document released in April 2010. Feedback from the discussion document was sought on the existing TAC Policies and proposed Over-Snow Passenger-Service Transport. A total of 51 written suggestions were received and taken into account by the department during the development of the partial review.

The draft partial review was publicly notified for comment (submissions) on 8 October 2010 until 10 December 2010. A total of 48 submissions were received. All comments were considered by a hearing panel comprising members of the Tongariro Taupo Conservation Board and Departmental representatives. Hearings were held in Turangi in person and over the phone for those submitters who indicated they wished to be heard.

As a result of the hearings and consideration of all submissions, changes were made to the draft partial review prior to it being presented to the New Zealand Conservation Authority (NZCA) on 23 June 2011 for approval. Following consideration by the NZCA and the Minister of Conservation, some further changes were made before the partial review was approved by the NZCA on 13 October 2011.

The partial plan review is part of, and will be effective for, the life of the Tongariro National Park Management Plan 2006.

Background to 2017/18 partial review

The Department asked for you to be involved in the partial plan review and you responded. This partial review has been a community driven process that now provides opportunities for iwi/whanau/hapu and the community to enable people to experience nature in different ways while also ensuring a safer option for walkers and cyclists off road. 

Publication information

ISSN 0111 – 5804
Tongariro/Taupo Conservation Management Planning Series 4


Taupo Office
Phone:   0800 275 362
Address:   37 Motutaiko Street
Taupo 3330
Postal Address:   PO Box 528
Taupo 3351
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