We enjoyed our day hiking around Mt Taranaki so much that we decided to go back again, this time to the 3rd entrance into the park on the Southeastern side. Dawson Falls can be seen after an easy 5-10 minute hike through the trees and down some steps. There is a nice look out point as well as access to the bottom of the falls.
A great place for a picnic
There was plenty of space to sit on the rocks and enjoy the water. Dawson Falls is about 18 meters high and when we visited consisted of two separate falls. The water below was crystal clear and the sound of the water crashing down was beautiful.
The crystal clear water
After spending some time at the falls we drove back down the mountain to The Hollard Gardens. This amazing park had been privately owned since the 1940’s before being transferred to the city for public use about 10 years ago.
The gardens are full of paths leading through all types of flowers and trees. It was the beginning of Spring so many things were in bloom although I imagine it would be beautiful during any season.
Beautiful colors of Spring
Enjoying the trees in bloom
The flowers were amazing!
There is a huge main lawn with benches, a gazebo, BBQ and playground. We spent a couple of hours walking around before heading to the brand new visitor center for complimentary coffee and hot chocolate. The visitor center contained lots of articles and photos of the Hollard family. Another spectacular free activity to do in New Zealand!