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Rotokare Scenic Reserve Trust

A community-led sanctuary project Sangster Road, Eltham 3498
Call us anytime 06 764 8500
Opening Hours: Open all day every day. Entry is through a double set of gates. All vehicles and gear must be checked for predators (rats, mice, mustelids) before entry. DOGS are not allowed.

Rotokare Scenic Reserve is a stunning, nationally significant 230 ha fenced sanctuary located 10 km east of Eltham. The 8.2 km predator-proof fence was erected in 2004 and acts as a barrier to pests immigrating from surrounding farmland. The reserve is now entirely free from exotic predators.

Our Vision – Rotokare is a thriving natural ecosystem that benefits and inspires wider conservation efforts within the community and throughout the region.

Our Mission – We will achieve the highest level of restoration, protection and enhancement of the indigenous ecosystem at Rotokare Scenic Reserve and beyond. We will actively involve the community and provide the best opportunities for education, recreation, inspiration, and environmental sustainability.

Ecological highlights to date include complete predator eradication since 2004, Saddleback, Whitehead, Robin and Hihi species translocations.
Rotokare Scenic Reserve Trust runs a MOE ‘Learning Outside the Classroom’ education program that reaches approximately 2000 Taranaki children each year.

Rotokare Sanctuary runs an active and highly successful volunteer program which includes training and skill development. Volunteers assist with operations within the sanctuary and contribute to the success of regional ecological programs.

The Trust is committed to community access to recreational activities within the reserve. The lake is open to power boating from 1 December to 30 April. The 4 km lake edge walking track is popular with families. The first 500 m of this track is barrier free and includes a wetlands boardwalk and floating pontoon. A 6 km ridgeline walk is more strenuous and provides breathtaking views of the sanctuary and eastern hill-country.

Night tours are run through the winter months for a small fee.

Limited camping is permitted at the reserve subject to South Taranaki District Council by-law.


Free entry - donations very welcome.

Sangster Road, Eltham 3498

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