The New Zealand National Commission for UNESCO is establishing a UNESCO Global Geoparks programme in New Zealand. UNESCO Global Geoparks are single, unified geographical areas where sites and landscapes of international geological significance are managed with a holistic concept of protection, education and sustainable development.
Activities that can be considered typical of a Geopark are mostly geotourism or educational-based. These include:
- school programmes
- guided walks
- museum exhibitions
- geological heritage protection and promotional activities
- socio-economic activities to encourage sustainable regional development.
Geoparks adopt a holistic approach to their heritage and promote all aspects of their region’s natural and cultural heritage.