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Haere mai / welcome to
The Brook Waimārama Sanc
tuary – a very special part of New Zealand

The Brook Waimārama Sanctuary is the largest fenced Sanctuary for endangered plants and creatures in the South Island.

Close to Nelson city but hidden away, immerse yourself in the natural beauty of New Zealand native bush, breathe deeply and engage.

We want to connect people (visitors, our staff and volunteers) with the natural world in a way that promotes environmental responsibility and contributes to the restoration of our local and national ecosystems.

We hope visitors will experience the mauri (life force), vital essence and spirituality of this natural environment.

We are enriching the future – come join us here at the Brook Waimārama Sanctuary.

Get Involved; Brook Waimārama Sanctuary


We welcome your help: hands-on or from a distance.

Brook Waimārama Sanctuary; Children: Students; Education Inspiring The Next Generation; Learning; Rick Field


It’s never too late to learn about how we can care for and interact with nature.

Brook Waimārama Sanctuary; Visitor Centre; Walks And Facilities


Be inspired by our 690-ha protected ecosystem just 6km from Nelson’s central city.

Brook Waimārama Sanctuary; Green Spider;


Discover the extraordinary in our backyard.

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Share your photos with us #brooksanctuary

Brook Waimārama Sanctuary Wins @tripadvisor Travelers’ Choice Award 2024! The award honors businesses that consistently earn great reviews, placing them among the top 10% of listings around the world on Tripadvisor.

This award is based on genuine feedback from anyone in the community who has visited and left and left an authentic, first-hand review on Tripadvisor over a 12-month period, making it a valuable and trustworthy designation of great places to visit. 

Thank you so much to all our visitors, staff, and volunteers who helped make this a possibility. We wouldn’t be able to do it without your continuos support! 

Check out all the reviews and discover more about the Brook Waimārama Sanctuary on our Tripadvisor page🤩
I don’t think people understand that 
New Zealand is home to over 1,500 native weevil species🪲 

Not all weevils are those pesky ones you often find in your garden. These incredible insects help with seed and pollen dispersal, decomposition, and support plant health by acting as weed control. 

They are a significant group of herbivores and their tight relationships with some plants make them vulnerable to extinction: already some of the large-bodied forms are gone, threatened, or refuge on offshore islands.

These are just a few of our favorites: the black spined weevil, elephant weevil, New Zealand flax weevil, and giraffe weevil! 

Some of our field staff state, “You thought Tinder was bad - the mating rituals of a giraffe weevil more closely resemble Love Island antics than what you’d expect from a creature that looks like a cross between Pinocchio’s nose and a warm hug. The females begin by digging holes with their long snouts, called a rostrum. They are able to do this without their antennae getting in the way as they occur halfway down their rostrum. While digging, males will attempt to copulate in whichever way they can. If you’re a large male with a large snout, you will battle until someone either retreats or is knocked off the tree.”

Giraffe weevils inhabit the warmer lowland forests of the Sanctuary, preferring to burrow into porokaiwhiri (pigeonwood), tawa and rimu. The larvae live for more than two years in these rotting trees, eating the numerous fungi that live within them. The adults erupt from the trees ready to mingle through spring and summer. 
Celebrate #WeevilWednesday with us! Bring in your weevil art/bug doodles to the visitor center or tag us and we’ll hang it on our weevil wall.

#nzwildlife #weevil #weevils #ecologie #natureinfocusawards2020 #bugs
This is why you need to book one of our glowworm tours…

This magical night-time adventure guides you through the Sanctuary’s native bush along the river! 🌿 Follow the moonlight and the call of the ruru (morepork) as our guides share stories and showcase local plants and animals. You might even get to try a kawakawa leaf! 🍃

As the Sanctuary usually closes at 4 PM, this might be the only time you can get through our predator-free gates and unlock an exclusive after dark experience with so many other bugs and birds, on top of the glowworms too! Plus, 100% of ticket sales go directly to protecting and conserving our beautiful Sanctuary. 🌍💚

Don’t miss out—book your spot now! Most Saturdays are already sold out. Comment “GLOW” and we’ll send you the booking page or just head to our website🌌 

#Glowworm #glowworms #Nature #Conservation #explorenewzealand #nelson #whakatū
This is the secret to beating boredom during these School Holidays. 🌟 Join us for our extended hours at the Sanctuary from Tuesday to Sunday, 10 AM to 4 PM until 19 July, for an unforgettable experience! 🦋 Let’s keep the kiddos entertained and educated with free coloring sheets, native wildlife scavenger hunts, bug hotels, a native fish tank, and so much more! 🎨🌿 It’s the perfect opportunity for a fun, educational day surrounded by nature. Come and explore with us! 🌳🍃 

#SchoolHolidays #schoolholidaysnz #easyactivitiesforkids #weekendactivity #wa #FamilyFun #NatureEducation #nzmum #kiwimum #ecoparenting #kiwikids #nz #newzealand
✨A glimpse of our Matariki event with @tasmanbayguardians last Thursday🌟

We welcomed around 30 locals from the Brook area for a special guided fish spotlighting event. Despite the cold night, we discovered numerous macroinvertebrates, a few koura (freshwater crayfish), and even a kōaro (Galaxias brevipinnis)! 🦐🐟 

The goal was to provide a fun, educational experience and explore the possibility of forming a Brook Valley catchment group to support the Sanctuary Halo, undertaking activities such as planting native trees, monitoring water quality, controlling invasive species, and advocating for greater conservation efforts. 🏞️💧

We wrapped up with a whānau BBQ, allowing everyone to have a kōrero and strengthen community ties. A big thank you to Paul Fisher from @nelsoncitycouncil and Akira Doura, plus all the freshwater experts for their invaluable help! 🙌 We’re so grateful for everyone who joined us and made this event a success too! 💚 

#matariki #BrookSanctuary #tasman #community #naturelovers #haloeffect #sanctuary #educationalfun


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