West Coast


Nurse in New Zealand: West Coast

At over 600 km long The West Coast region reaches from Kahurangi Point in the north to Awarua Point in the south. To the west is the Tasman Sea and to the east are the Southern Alps. Much of the land is rugged, although there are coastal plains around which much of the population resides.

Doctors and nurses will see that the land is very scenic, with wild coastlines, mountains, and a very high proportion of native bush, much of it native temperate rain forest. The West Coast is the only part of New Zealand where significant tracts of lowland forest remain-elsewhere, for instance on the Canterbury Plains and in the Firth of Thames, they have been almost completely destroyed for settlement and agriculture. Scenic areas include the Haast Pass, Fox and Franz Josef Glaciers, the Pancake Rocks at Punakaiki and the Heaphy Track.

The region has a very high rainfall due to the prevailing northwesterly wind pattern and the location of the Southern Alps.