See & Do

With over 350 species and 8000 trees, Cornwall Park has the trees for you!

The trees you see today were part of a vision over 100 years ago created by Sir John Logan Campbell and his landscape architect, Austin Strong.  Which makes sense - planting trees is always about looking to the future, as they take years to grow. 

You’ll notice as you walk that there are trees everywhere - they are the stars of the park, shape the paths and views, provide shade, bring beauty, are home to birds and insects, reflect our heritage, and are far enough apart so you have the space to play.  

Many of our trees are native to New Zealand, including a Pōhutukawa over 150 years old. Our trees are cared for by a team of arborists (kaitiaki rākau) - they monitor them, fix them when they’re damaged or unhealthy, prune them and ensure they are safe to be around. You may even spot an arborist up a tree as you wander the park! 

We plant 80–100 trees each year – to replace those that have reached the end of their life cycle, as part of new designs or developments, or to assist with a healthy ecosystem.

Our trees are an important part of what makes Cornwall Park special.  

See our trees and tree map below. 


Origin The Mediterranean Region
Found Olive Grove

Olive trees are along the Olive Grove, where you’ll find some of our oldest trees and the source of our olive oil. In recent years we’ve even be able to produce a small batch of olive oil (not enough to sell though)! The twisted trunks tell many stories - see if you can spot the one that has a Fig tree wrapping around it.


Origin Native NZ
Found Pōhutukawa Drive and near Huia Lodge

Pōhutukawa Drive was planted with 400 native Pōhutukawa trees in 1929 and 100 Norfolk Pines, planted in 1929. The position of the Norfolk Pine means that the Pōhutukawa tree grow towards the road. See them flower with different shades of red in December. To see a yellow-flowering Pōhutukawa, head to the carpark next to the Bistro.


Origin Native NZ
Found Native Arboretum

Did you know that Tōtara roots make the soil more fertile by adding nitrogen to it?


Origin Native NZ
Found Pūriri Drive and just down from Huia Lodge

Pūriri Drive is home to rows of Pūriri trees, Phoenix Palms, and Cherry Blossoms. Pūriri trees fruit and flower all year, so they play an important part in the ecosystem by keeping birds fed throughout winter.

Horse Chestnut

Origin Southern Europe
Found Near main car park

These trees are thirsty - they can draw up to 50,000 litres of water in a single year!


Origin California
Found Native Arboretum

These trees can grow to around 40m and seem to thrive in the NZ climate.

Algerian Oak

Origin Algeria, Portugal, Spain, Tunisia, Morocco
Found Poplar Steps and near the main car park

The Algerian Oak is a mighty tree, standing at 18m tall, 3m in diameter, and nearly 100 years old. It is one of the largest trees in the park.

Morton Bay Fig

Origin Eastern coast of Australia
Found Poplar Steps and near main car park

These trees are big grand trees and are easily identifiable by their roots protruding from the ground.


Origin China
Found Between Pōhutukawa Drive and the cafe

The Chinese native, Gingko Biloba, are planted on the old hospital site. The gingko fruit - a Chinese delicacy - ripen in March/April. You’ll see its leaf, commonly used in natural medicine, turn yellow in May/June.

Cherry Blossom

Cherry Blossoms are the national flower of Japan and the universal symbol of spring. They can be found near the main carpark and along Puriri Drive. You’ll see them in bloom from late September to mid October for three to four weeks.

Native Arboretum

The Native Arboretum is where the trees frame the edges of the central green lawn next to the main carpark. Here you'll find Totaras, Kohe Kohe, Kowhai, Titoki, Rimu, and more! This is the perfect spot for picnics with lots of shade and space to play.

Kauri Grove

The Kauri Grove is home to five native species - Kauri, Rimu, Totara, Tanekaha and Kohekohe, which were mostly planted in 1947. With the trees standing tall, it’s the perfect spot to be immersed in the wonders of New Zealand native trees. But please stick to the path to keep our Kauris healthy.

Magnolias and Liquid Amber

Near the cafe and BBQs you’ll find Magnolias and Liquid Ambers. Liquid Amber is a sight to behold in Autumn with leaves of yellow, orange, red and purple. Magnolias are best seen in spring with their pink flowers in full-bloom.

Twin Oak Drive

A favourite walking and jogging spot for locals is through Twin Oak Drive, where you’ll find yourself surrounded by Oak trees. Look up to see the full beauty of the natural arch they make.