The Park and its Shakespear Open Sanctuary are New Zealand’s most visited and accessible wildlife sanctuary.
This 500ha pest-free sanctuary integrates public recreation with intensive conservation and a working farm.
The Park incorporates a wastewater treatment plant and a military training base.
The Park is a large, popular green space on the tip of the Whangaparaoa Peninsula. It is well known as a place for seaside and water-based activities and as a place to relax by the ocean.
Also, many people come here for active recreation such as walking and mountain biking, or to enjoy the natural features of the Park.
The proximity to Auckland, a city experiencing a rapid population growth, makes the Park an enduring and much needed destination for respite, rest and relaxation.
The Shakespear Open Sanctuary is very accessible and has large visitor numbers - approx 600,000+ p.a.
The creation of the Shakespear Open Sanctuary has added a new dimension to the regional parks, which fits well with a growing awareness of wider initiatives like the North-West Wildlife Link and Pest Free New Zealand.
The Shakespear Open Sanctuary has a predator-proof fence.
A central part of the story of the Park is that the park is a vital link in the chain between Tiritiri Matangi Island and the North-West Wildlife Link.
Since the inception of the Park, a substantial planting programme of native trees and shrubs has seen the transformation from a largely open farm, to a mixed landscape of paddock vistas and forested gullies and wetlands, all on a stunning peninsula overlooking the Hauraki Gulf.
A comprehensive trapping programme, together with the introduction of a predator proof fence in 2011, has resulted in the Park enjoying pest-free status for nearly ten years.
Much of the re-afforestation ground work has now been laid and the coming decades will see the planning and hard work come to fruition, with a lush environment where people can (re)connect with nature, the sea, the forest, the farm and New Zealand’s heritage.