Along the walkway to Wharariki Beach, Golden Bay
When spending time in our natural places please take time to leave our environment clean. When you are out and about, please follow these simple guidelines.
Protect plants and animals
Treat New Zealand's forests and birds with care and respect. They are unique, often rare, and sometimes endangered. In the high country and mountains of the South Island, you may see the kea, the world's only alpine parrot. These attractive, mischievous birds are naturally unafraid of humans. Do not feed them - it can make them human-dependent. They will also seek out humans and their strong beaks can easily damage cars, tents and personal belongings.
- Litter is harmful to wildlife and marine life, and can increase vermin and the risk of disease. When walking, do not bury your rubbish but carry out what you carry in.
- Roadside rubbish containers are only for items like wrappers and tissues. Food and household wastes should be kept in plastic bags and then disposed of in motor camp rubbish bins.
- If you have a baby, remember that disposable nappies will not decompose. Ensure you take plastic bags and get rid of your used nappies at motor camp rubbish bins.
- Bury toilet waste
- In areas without toilet facilities, bury your toilet waste in a shallow hole well away from water sources.
Keep streams and lakes clean
Take water well away from the source when cleaning and washing. Soap and detergents are harmful to water-life so drain used water into the soil to allow it to be filtered. Do not use soap in any waterway or lake. If you suspect the water may be contaminated, either boil it for at least three minutes, filter, or chemically treat it. If your motorhome does not have a grey-water holding tank, place a bucket under the drainage hose for the sink and/or shower and dispose of it thoughtfully.
Take care with fires
Portable fuel stoves are less harmful to the environment and are more efficient than fires. If you do make a fire, keep it small, use only dead wood and make sure it is out by pouring water over it and burying the ashes.
Keep to the track
When there is a track, keep on it. This will avoid damaging fragile plants, prevent you from becoming lost, and in some instances, save you from dangerous terrain like steam vents or hidden caves.
People visit the backcountry and rural areas for a variety of reasons. Be considerate of other visitors who also have a right to enjoy the natural environment.
Respect our cultural heritage
Many places have spiritual, cultural, and historical significance. Treat these places with consideration and respect.
Enjoy your visit
Enjoy your outdoor experience. Take a last look before leaving an area. Will the next visitor know you have been there?
One of the best ways to reduce our wasteful use of resources is to recycle. In New Zealand, local authorities have set up many recycling depots. Glass, metal and plastic are the most commonly recycled products. Recycling outlets are located in all main centres throughout the country.