Maltilda Battery
Image: Sharleen Briden | ©



Bendigo's historic and scenic reserves and associated conservation areas are well worth visiting for their historic and natural features.

Bendigo’s conservation areas consist of three separate blocks on the western side of Central Otago’s Dunstan Mountains.

There are old and very deep mining shafts throughout this area. Extreme care must be taken and children closely supervised.

Bendigo scenic and historic reserves

  • Provide easy and interesting opportunities for day trips, walks and rambling around relics of our gold mining past.
  • The Bendigo Scenic Reserve has a uniquely terraced band of kānuka, along with unequalled views of the Upper Clutha Basin and the farmland and vineyards on the slopes and valleys below. 
  • The Kānuka Loop Track circumnavigates the Chinaman’s Creek catchment and provides a wonderful opportunity to have a longer walk in a shrubland environment – a rare experience in Central Otago.

Bendigo Conservation Area

  • A high and isolated 1,980 ha area with all the natural features of Otago’s alpine tussock land. It also has panoramic views west to the Southern Alps/Kā Tiritiri o te Moana and east to the Otago hinterland. 
  • Spanning the crest of the Dunstan Mountains, its highest point is Mount Apiti at 1509 m. 
  • Provides plenty of good recreational opportunities: mountain biking, hunting, walking, cross-country skiing and 4WD driving along the crest. 

Ardgour Conservation Area

  • Straddling the ridge line of the Dunstan Mountains in the Thomsons Saddle area, Ardgour’s 303 ha gives access to interesting walks along the tops to Mount Kamaka at the northern end of the conservation area.
  • A remote and isolated area but well worth a visit if you want a mountain-top walk with great views of Central Otago and its surrounding ranges. Mountain biking and cross country skiing is also possible up here.
  • Apart from the Bendigo Historic Reserve, which was private protected land, the conservation area has become public land following tenure review of Bendigo and Ardgour Stations. The Bendigo Conservation Area is still leased and grazed by Bendigo Station as part of their high country farming operation.

Find things to do and places to stay Bendigo area


Wānaka Tititea/Mount Aspiring National Park Visitor Centre
Phone +64 3 443 7660
Address 1 Ballantyne Road
Wānaka 9305
Hours Visitor centre hours and services
Back to top