The Deepest Lakes In New Zealand

Lake Hauroko, the deepest lake in New Zealand.
Lake Hauroko, the deepest lake in New Zealand.

New Zealand is a country characterized by immense natural wealth. It has numerous lakes of great beauty and aquatic biodiversity. The five deepest lakes of the country are mentioned below:

1. Lake Hauroko - 462 m

The deepest lake in New Zealand, Lake Hauroko is located within the limits of the Fiordland National Park in the country’s South Island. The lake has a maximum depth of 1,516 ft or 462 m and a surface area of 63 square km. It is S-shaped and extends for a length of 30 km. Present in a mountain valley of the national park, the lake’s waters are drained mainly by the Wairaurahiri River which ultimately enters the Foveaux Strait. The name of the lake means sounding wind” in the Māori language.

2. Lake Manapouri - 444 m

New Zealand’s second deepest lake has a maximum depth of 1,457 ft or 444 m. Lake Manapouri is located in the Southland District in the South Island of the country. The lake was formed by glaciers during the Holocene epoch. The lake has an indented coastline with four arms and smaller indentations. It also has many islands with the Pomona Island being the largest. The Manapouri settlement is based on the eastern shores of this lake. The Waiau River acts as both a source of water for the lake and an outlet. The lake is associated with great scenic beauty and is regarded as New Zealand’s most beautiful lake.

3. Lake Te Anau - 417 m

This lake is located in the South Island’s southwestern corner where it is part of the Fiordland National Park. It occupies an area of 344 square km. It is the second largest lake in the country by area and the third deepest. The lake is 1,368 ft or 417 m deep. Three inland fjords extend from the lake. Lake Te Anau is fed by several rivers with the most important being the Eglinton River. The waters of the lake drain into the Waiau River which again feeds the Lake Manapouri. The area surrounding the lake is mostly free of human interference with the exception of two settlements of the Te Anau Downs and the Te Anau township.

4. Lake Hāwea - 392 m

This lake is located in a glacial valley in New Zealand’s Otago Region. It encompasses an area of 141 square km and is located at an elevation of 348 m. It is the country’s fourth deepest lake with a depth of 1,286 ft or 392 m. The Hunter River feeds the lake and the Hāwea River drains it. Lake Hāwea is a popular tourist and recreational destination. Fishing, swimming, boating are popular activities here. The surrounding mountains and rivers permit year-round adventure tourism.

5. Lake Wakatipu - 380 m

The fifth deepest lake in New Zealand, Lake Wakatipu has a maximum depth of 1,250 ft or 380 m. The lake is located in South Island’s Otago Region. It is a finger lake with an area of 291 square km. It is the country’s longest lake and extends for 80 km in length. The Dart River feeds the lake at its northern end. The Kawarau River drains the lake from its Frankton Arm.


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