Jagged mountain peaks dusted with snow, icy glacier lakes glittering in the sunshine, fields of pale lavender lupin swaying in the fresh, cool breeze. Aoraki/Mount Cook National Park is one of the most stunning unspoiled regions of New Zealand’s South Island - and boasts the highest mountain peak in the country.
It draws mountain climbers, star-gazers and nature-lovers and offers countless vistas that will stop you in your tracks with awe.
We love sharing the beautiful Ngāi Tahu legend, that tells how these mountains were formed when Aoraki (the eldest son of Raki, the Sky Father) and his brothers sailed their canoe down from the heavens to visit their stepmother Papatūānuku (the Earth Mother).
They saw that they would not be able to separate their father from his newfound love, so they headed back to the heavens. When Aoraki was reciting the karakia for the journey back, he misspoke - causing the canoe to be stranded on a rock. The brothers were turned to stone, their hair turning white to become the snowy mountain peaks.