Eastwoodhill Arboretum


The Garden

Eastwood Hill is an arboretum of national and international importance. It holds the most comprehensive collection of woody plants in New Zealand and possibly the largest collection of Northern Hemisphere trees south of the equator including 170 species currently on the International Union for Conservation of Nature (I.U.C.N.) world endangered list. The arboretum displays over 4000 different taxa of trees, shrubs and climbers on the 135 hectare property, gathered by the late Douglas Cook, the founder, and since augmented by the Eastwoodhill Trust Board.

Many winter flowering trees herald spring when a one hectare planting of daffodils and prunus, malus, magnolias, chestnuts, maples, cornus, azaleas and many unusual species come into bloom. There is interest all year but the highlight is perhaps in autumn when oaks, ash, maples, cotinus, larch and countless other deciduous trees provide a riot of colour. Many rare and unusual conifers add evergreen form and colour.

The historic one hectare homestead garden dating from 1910 is an integral attraction cared for by volunteers. An ongoing project, the garden provides a fitting introduction to the arboretum and is full of interesting plantings aesthetically combined in a unique setting.



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The Gardener

Curator Dan Haliday leads the team, and is passionate about botany and Eastwooodhill. Dan brings a wealth of knowledge and can often be found working amongst the trees on one of the many walking tracks or in the office.

Dan Haliday took up the position of curator at Eastwoodhill in January 2015 after a comprehensive career in botany and horticulture. He initially gained a Trade Certificate in Horticulture and was employed at a tree and shrub nursery in Waiuku, South Auckland. He also holds a Diploma in Nursery Management and Degree papers in Botany and Zoology from Massey University.


Garden Details

2392 Wharekopae Rd, Gisborne 4072, New Zealand

Eastwoodhill is situated approximately 35 kilometers northwest of Gisborne - a 30-minute drive through the picturesque Ngatapa Valley on the Wharekopae Road.
+64 6 863 9003
+64 6 863 9003
Contact Person
Marion Nicholas Office Administrator
The Arboretum itself is open daily from 9am to 5pm. It is only closed Christmas Day.
From Queen's Birthday Weekend (June) to Labour Weekend (late October) we close the shop and Visitor's Centre on weekends and public holidays. However, the Arboretum is still open and an honesty box system applies.
Garden Size
Eastwoodhill Arboretum is the National Arboretum of New Zealand and encompasses over 131 hectares planted in exotic and native trees, shrubs and climber plantings.
The Homestead Garden is 1.5 hectares, and extends from the Visitor Centre to the Homestead and across to the Black Gates.
Adults $15
Senior Citizens (over 65) $12
Children under 5yrs no charge with paying adult
Children aged 5 - 17yrs $2
Polytechnics $10 per student
Universities $10 per student
Off street parking for coaches buses and cars.
Yes we have toilets available along with disabled facilities.
Cafe/Resaurant Available
The Tasty Leaf Cafe only operates over our busiest weekends in the Autumn as it is operated by volunteers. Please phone the office to confirm whether it is open during your visit.

If you plan to visit with a group of 15 or more, please contact Eastwoodhill staff at least three working days prior to your visit as we may be able to arrange to have the Cafe open for your visit. Bookings need to be made between 9am and 5pm Monday - Friday.
Enjoy a picnic hamper at your favourite spot in the park, or a scrumptious light lunch or evening meal in the relaxing surroundings of the Douglas Cook Centre courtyard.
Enjoy a boxed picnic to take to your favourite spot in the park or enjoy a scrumptious light lunch or evening meal in the relaxing surroundings of the Douglas Cook Centre courtyard.
Minimum 15 people per booking or a minimum charge of $150 (minimum charges do not apply to morning or afternoon teas).
Wheelchair Access
For people with mobility issues, or for visitors wishing to see more of the arboretum, we have a Jeep available for tours - seats a maximum of 12 people. Weather permitting.
A mobility scooter, kindly funded by the Esme and Tom Tombleson Trust, is also available from the Visitor Centre free of charge.
Children Allowed
Designed by leading New Zealand play space designer Tina Dyer from Play Central, we have created “the most awesome natural playground”.
Children, and their parents, are beginning to discover the delights of this amazing new playground - all its existing areas and elements are ready to be explored and enjoyed.

The Discovery Centre features a children's corner including a library of books, as well as bean bags to relax in. An interactive microscope projected through a television is child friendly, and is a fantastic way to discover the natural world up close.
Immerse yourself in the beauty of our very own national arboretum when you enjoy a stay at Eastwoodhill's Douglas Cook Centre.
Guided Tours
A guided tour is one of the very best ways to enjoy Eastwoodhill, discover new and amazing facts about the national arboretum and the 25,000 plants and trees it contains.

Walking tours of the arboretum take approximately an hour, and a minimum of four people on these tour is ideal. However if you would like to take a tour with less people, please talk to the staff in the Visitor Centre or contact Eastwoodhill.

A tour with the curator of Eastwoodhill, viewing some of the special flora and fauna in the arboretum.
$15 plus entry fee per person (minimum charge $60).

Tours must be booked prior to arrival. To book or for more information, please contact Eastwoodhill.

Highly recommended for senior citizen groups, visitors with restricted mobility and those on a tight schedule. The Jeep is able to seat 12 people maximum. A minimum fee of of $50 is charged.
Function Center Available?
Enrich your Eastwoodhill experience by staying at the arboretum, taking a guided tour, or booking a corporate conference or function. The Douglas Cook Centre library is the ideal venue for your next seminar, conference, retreat or team building exercise. The Douglas Cook Library can accommodate up to 40 people, with doors opening out to a large patio area - perfect for coffee and lunch breaks. Facilities include a whiteboard, digital presentation equipment and comprehensive office resources. With prior notice, Tasty Leaf Catering can provide all the food and drinks needed to make your conference at Eastwoodhill a great experience.
Other Facilities

Our walks cater for all levels of fitness and ability , from flat tree lined paths to a steep climb up Mt Arateitei which rewards visitors with glorious views of the arboretum and the surrounding countryside.

The walks are clearly signposted and maps are available from the Visitors Centre. 

The latest addition to the Eastwoodhill Arboretum Education Programme is the Discovery Centre. The Discovery Centre features information boards about the history of the arboretum and the people who are credited with developing and securing its future.

Eastwoodhill provides an inspirational environment for art and craft groups, study groups, walking groups, or groups of friends after some quality time together.

There are many educational opportunities at Eastwoodhill. We love hosting student groups and try to keep it as cost-effective as possible. Prior bookings are preferred, so please get in touch.

Depending on the season, it's possible to encounter over 40 species of native and exotic birds at Eastwoodhill who come to feast on the many seeds, insects and berries within the arboretum.