A fabulous UNESCO World Heritage site measuring 434 square miles (700 square kilometers), Aoraki Mount Cook National Park stretches from Westland to Fiordland on New Zealand's South Island. A mecca for climbers, hikers, skiers, and lovers of natural beauty, the park's attractions include the Tasman Glacier and the warm and welcoming Heritage, New Zealand’s most famous hotel.
Twenty-two of the country's highest mountains also stand proudly in the park, including the mighty 12,316-foot (3,755-meter) Mount Cook itself, the tallest of them all. Perhaps the best way to take in the mountains’ grandeur is from the air on a helicopter tour.
Mount Cook Village is the park's main base, 7.5 miles (12 km) from Mount Cook's snowy summit. Buses run here from Christchurch, Queenstown and Dunedin.and elsewhere on the South Island.