Reviews - What our visitors say about us

We love to get your feedback!  Have you been to the sanctuary and want to let us know what we fantastic or what we could do better?  
Email us our team at and let us know what you think!

A truly spectacular day for me thank you, and trust me I've done some really cool things before but this was right up there. The passion, the pride, the service beyond self and the truly intergenerational and transformational work you and the team have done and are doing is inspirational and such a great example of giving today for tomorrow.


Extremely organised, with clear communication. Tali and Sue were really engaging, working at an appropriate pace for the children. Lots of fun things to see and do. We also really appreciated having sanitizer and a tarpaulin already there for us. We really appreciated our day there and how well it was run.

Horsham Downs School

The appropriate level of information for the junior and senior children. The instructions by Tali and Clare to the children were excellent. The patience and way that Tali and Clare interacted with our children was perfect! The children were excited by all the things they were being told. Very interesting stories and fun facts were shared. I was amazed at the level of detail the children remembered when we went through the photos today! Just to say thank you very much again. It was an outstanding experience for the children, parents and staff. We look forward to coming back again when our juniors are seniors and we have a new group of juniors coming through!

Motumaoho School

Brilliant experience - looking forward to next year!!

Kings School

The team's knowledge of the sanctuary's work, the culture of the land, bringing in Maori myths about the birds, the way they interact with the children. Our kids where engaged the entire time - ages from 5-12yrs old. The programme was brilliant!

Kio Kio School

The guides are what makes this so special. We had such a fabulous day!!! The guides were wonderful...we asked lots of questions which they patiently engaged with and gave us SO much information as we trotted around. It was like a nature story book.

Archers Homeschool Group

All of us had such an amazing time! The children were exhausted on the way home but they had such an amazing time! They have been talking about it constantly and have been remembering all sorts of details from the things that they remember.

Korakonui School

The educators were very easy to listen to and very knowledgeable. They spoke to the children and at their level. They also interacted with the adults too. The props used to get the message across was great. This made a great visual learning experience. Staff just couldn't stop talking about it. The tower was a great end to the walk too.

Tirau School

All the educators were great. We loved their enthusiasm and patience. Thanks for a wonderful visit. One teacher said it was the most educational trip she has ever been on. Maybe we need to visit again and look at another part of the sanctuary.

Tirau School

Thank you. It was an informative and engaging day. Engaging the children with what you were doing conservation wise and the guides information on the track were excellent. Excellent knowledgeable staff, friendly and plenty of them to help guide the students (and teachers) around.

Fairfield Intermediate

Thank you so much for an excellent trip yesterday. I am still buzzing from it and have been telling a lot of people about it and the new learning I got from it.

Raglan Area School

Thank you all for an awesome educational experience last week. The tamariki were stoked, as were we all. We look forward to visiting again in the future.

Te Wharekura o te Kaokaoroa o Patetere

It was so cool to finally meet you in person and the experience you gave us was just so amazing! You know what, I haven't stopped smiling today. I am still buzzing from the trip and so are the kids! It's just so incredible to get out and see firsthand what we have been learning about and it has really sparked even more interest in the topics we have covered so far. You, Sue, Brian and the team are amazing at what you do. You made the trip so fun and really pitched at the right level for the kids. I am highly recommending a trip out your way to every person I come across. As a teacher I feel like we don't get outside on these educational trips enough. I definitely feel like my bucket is filled after our trip yesterday, I literally had a spring in my step today.

Aberdeen School

Sanctuary Mountain is meant for nature and bird lovers and those who wish to learn more about the native flora and fauna. The maintained trails provide an opportunity to see some unique biodiversity, including endangered species (when they come out of hiding). Our knowledgeable guide Sue enhanced the visit by sharing insights into conservation efforts and how they keep it a predator-free environment. Great for bird watchers, photographers and those wanting a deeper education of nature.

Mike Cristello

Outstanding. A must visit. Give yourself plenty to soak in everything. The staff are amazing and chock full of interesting knowledge. Don't miss this.

A L Lomas

Great walks and reserve in what is now pristine North Island forest. Jake's 90-minute guided tour of the Southern Enclosure was fantastic. A must for every tourist and NZ folk to see Kākā and Tīeke in the wild.

Peter Symington

I’m honestly still smiling after my afternoon on the maunga yesterday, so I had to write and thank you SO MUCH. The team is doing extraordinary work with the whole sanctuary, and to see the kiwi team, volunteers, dogs, it was absolutely amazing. It was very moving to see the kiwi close up. They’re absolutely iconic in every sense of the word.

Katy Scoullar

THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU! Because one THANK YOU is not enough! We felt very honoured and privileged to witness the health check and transfer process of two kiwi yesterday. To be so close to our iconic bird was very surreal for many of our team. Many photos were taken and I’m sure you’ll see some of them pop up on social media in the coming few days.

Nicola Greenwell

This place is special. Heaven for the nature-loving ornithologist. Gentle walkways, a viewing tower, and a clearing with kākā. Please respect and take care of this precious maunga.


Education Programme Review: Great pre trip organisation and support. Excellent team of engaging educators and such an amazing resource! A really great field trip that was as close to real world biology as I have done in the high school setting.

Cambridge High School

There are great hiking trails that can easily be walked in one visit. You can see many native birds and look at local plants. It's worth a visit!!!

Linea Matheis

Impressive Magical Inexpensive

Gerhard Markus Beckmann

Really well laid out trails with good info on the flora. We were lucky enough to see quite a few of the native birds and even get some pictures.

Lisa Harris

Very friendly guides, full of knowledge and passionate about what they do. We were lucky enough to see different types of native birds, including a very inquisitive kākā. They are wild, so keep that in mind when you visit (the guides can't make them appear on demand!).

Pam Chapman

Yesterday [recently] a group of us were on the mountain. It is probably 8 years since I did this. The hard work from so many is so evident. The undergrowth is fantastic. We heard kōkako, saw saddleback, tūī, robins, and heard many others! This has to be one of the biggest success stories in New Zealand.


An awesome project done solely by the community. Many thanks! Our friend from Switzerland and we hiked for more than 6 hours on parts of Te Tonga and Werere Traverse tracks and encountered many beautiful birds and scenery. After the hike, we had a rest at the visitor center with a great view and super friendly visitor center ladies. This place is truly a gem, and for those who visit in the future, please help to keep it nice and clean for our future generations.

Jeffrey Ke

Just wow! Absolutely wonderful! We recently did the Ancient Forest Tour and The Tautari Wetland tour. Just incredible. We highly recommend this experience, cannot rate it enough. We will be back. We even got to see Tuatara, Kākā and Takahē.

Tasman Travels, Aotearoa New Zealand

Such an asset to the region, stunning flora and birdlife.

Derek Devoy, Matamata, New Zealand

Thank you so much for putting in tremendous effort to reserve this beautiful forest and native animals! As a tourist, I had the most wonderful memory with our guide - Kate. She has taught us so much!


Thank you for looking after our precious wildlife.


My wife and I live in Miami and visited Sanctuary Mountain Maungatautari during a trip to New Zealand a month ago. Our guide was Jenny. We were very impressed with her sincerity as well as your organization and the success of your work.

Anonymous, Miami, USA

Wonderful experience seeing tuatara on a wetland tour. Southern Enclosure surrounded by native trees, bush and birds soothes the soul.

Desley McFarlane

Incredible project and will only get even better with time.

Andy Williams

Incredible what has been created to protect the animals in this area. Ample parking and a bit of an uphill walk to get to the office, followed by a really awesome walking trails. Lucky to get a video of a kingfisher bird at the entrance. A must do walk!!

Rene Lind-Steyn

We had the most wonderful experience at Sanctuary Mountain, I even managed to spot a beautiful Saddleback! Highly recommend.

Martha Rowbotham

A really great sanctuary, with some incredible birdlife. If you’re slow and quiet enough you may get a little show from the Piwakawaka.

Jack Howe

Great experience and wonderful staff so friendly and helpful. The bush and birdlife are amazing, have to go back to do the wetland tour to see the tuatara.

Gary Chapman

Sanctuary Mountain Maungatautari has a beautiful array of native New Zealand birds. The tracks are well signposted and easy to navigate I would highly recommend for any nature or bird lover or photographer.

Lydia Gillies, Auckland, New Zealand

We absolutely love visiting Maungatautari, we have been several times over the years, often visiting the Southern Sanctuary and once doing the over the mountain hike from very early in the morning. We visited the southern enclosure today and spent six hours watching, walking and photographing the birds. We saw whiteheads, rifleman, kaka, friendly robins, saddlebacks, fantails and heard a cuckoo but didn't see it. Highly recommend.

Nikki Jean

Wow wow wow ... I am ashamed to say this was my first visit here. Our company held a 'Bush Boardroom' Strategic Planning day with Nature and Nosh's lovely Kylie hosting us. The walk in transcended any expectation I may have held. The forestry was close to prehistoric and is completely untouched. The birdlife was a delightful window into rare species not usually seen or heard. Our day was serenaded by the Saddlebacks laughing like kookaburras and the delightful North Island Robins bouncing around our feet. The observation tower that took us into the tree canopy was magic. You truly have to be here to appreciate the 'feel' and it is on Hamiltons doorstep!. Nature and Nosh was sincerely a 'completely exceeding any expectation' experience - Kylie's setup, catering and hosting was second to none. Every one of our group enjoyed every minute of this day and she was so right! - the bush invigorates and refreshes - what a wonderful equation to make such an important day the absolute best it could be!

Nikki Close

Saw kaka, robin, saddleback, fantail and other birds. There was bird activity even though it was raining. I love the 'jurassic park' style forest, 500yr+ old trees and informative signs. The viewing tower is great. I think if you stay up there long enough you will always see something. If you have binoculars they would improve the bird viewing.

Elise Cooper

If you want to see New Zealand's nocturnal animals, go here. Of course, there are day tours as well as night tours. I went on a night tour and it was great. I was happy to see glow worms, go up to the observatory, and see many stars in the night sky! This is not a zoo, but a conservation area fenced off to protect native animals.

HyoJin Yang (YY)

A beautiful and peaceful place.

Tony Nicholls

I've hiked many, many forests around New Zealand, but this one hits differently. You just know you're in as native of an NZ forest as it can get, thanks to the predator-proof fence that takes a lot of work and money to maintain. The forest is alive with the beautiful songs of many native birds. It is extra special knowing that the very endangered kākāpō parrot may be roaming around since this is their only mainland home for now. Unlike other hikes, you're not looking for any particular thing, but just soaking in the feeling, the sounds, the sights. The staff members are so passionate about NZ's wildlife. I enjoyed the stories and knowledge I learned from tour guide Liz, and desk staff, Jenny. Thank you for memories to last a lifetime in this unique corner of Aotearoa! Please come to support the conservation efforts and enjoy this magical forest.

Meggie Tran

I loved going here. It's a little piece of calm. Staff are welcoming and helpful.


Great place to visit, nice and cool in the trees.

David Peters

Beautiful spot - loved seeing the kākā, robins and fantails.

Emma O'Neill

A great morning activity for our family. Our mountain buggy terrain was easily able to navigate the trails.

Emma Southall

Really cool place to see some unique birds and enjoy a beautiful peaceful nature walk. Extremely friendly staff as well.

Kelly Kaufman