Lake Pearson (Moana Rua) Campsite

(Moana Rua)

Arthur's Pass

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A basic camping area along side Lake Pearson very popular with bird watching and fishing. Camp nestled underneath the mature willow trees, a huge gravel turning area good for large vehicles. Picnic tables scattered throughout the site.

There is a large 'Rest area' sign on the main road leading the way.

Photos

Maps

Contact

Phone: (03) 371 3700

Phone (intl): +64 3 371 3700

Springfield Address:
Lake Pearson, SH73, 35km south of Arthurs Pass

52 reviews with the most recent first, showing page 1 of 4.

Thanks to all the good people working for the NZ Department of Conservation - for all your hard work - making NZ more beautiful, accessable and healthy! Cheers 😍

Lilia's avatar

Lilia

Ranking: 2/10

It's already not for free i was surprised when i realized that. Without water supply i was not happy...

Reviewed 22 days ago

Kiri Edwards 's avatar

Kiri Edwards

Ranking: 9/10

Open again August 2018. Beautiful location. All new fencing, bitumen and parking sites in place. Good longdrop toilet, didn't smell and had toilet paper. Now $8 per person per night. Lots of friendly ducks. Two hoppy ducks with wonky legs. Wanted to stay longer due to beautiful location. Would recommend.

Reviewed 4 months ago

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Sezz bella 's avatar

Sezz bella

Ranking: 1/10

This place is still closed.

Reviewed 7 months ago

Clobby's avatar

Clobby

Ranking: 6/10

CLOSED ON 2nd March 2018.
The location looks fantastic, can’t comment on staying there because it was closed off by large fences and gravel trucks. I can’t give it a proper rating, just a neutral 6/10 for location. I just felt a notice of closure, even temporary would help others.

Reviewed 10 months ago

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Jarod Haegel's avatar

Jarod Haegel

Australia

Ranking: 10/10

Brilliant view of lake surrounded by the hills. Can park right next to the water. Lots of ducks. Make sure you get there early since the good spots fill up fast. Good drop toilet. Popular place so expect neighbours. This is the best free camp site in NZ!

Reviewed 11 months ago and experienced in November 2017

Pirita Latja's avatar

Pirita Latja

Finland

Ranking: 9/10

Very nice free campsite by a lake on the way to Arthur's Pass. Lots of space, can be a bit windy but hey we're in the mountains. Clean long drop toilets. Good camping.

Reviewed about 1 year ago

Sanne Heil's avatar

Sanne Heil

Ranking: 8/10

This is one of the most beautiful free camp sites we’ve stayed! Great spot at the lake and surrounded by mountains. Be sure to arrive early as it fills up pretty quickly. The camp site’s description says that there should be a water point but we couldn’t find it?!

Reviewed about 1 year ago

Avoid Camping Fines!

The only camping map where each location is approved by every regional council in NZ. So if it shows on the map, you’re allowed to stay.

The Rankers Camping NZ app, is also in association with…

Sally Caboche's avatar

Sally Caboche

Australia

Ranking: 10/10

April 2017 This was the first night of our 2 week road trip around the South Island.Having clambered around the rocks at Castle Hill until late afternoon, Lake Pearson was just a short 20 mins up the road. The wind picked up a bit through the night but we were relatively sheltered amongst the trees right on the lake's edge. We woke to a fresh dusting of snow on the peaks and were greeted by a spectacular view and friendly ducks ... and yes hoppy was a keen visitor with us, too. The site was beautiful; there were a handful of other vans and all was quiet. The long drop was clean and the hand sanitizer was a nice touch. It was the best free campsite of our trip and rated in our top 3 of all sites we stayed at.

Reviewed about 1 year ago and experienced in April 2017

Katy Coutts's avatar

Katy Coutts

Ranking: 8/10

What a great find for free! Stayed here about 12 times over 2 months as climbing in the area. Exceptionally busy over Easter but quieter after, though always at least 10 vehicles, even when - 5°c! However, DOC do a great job with the toilet (long drop) - always stocked with toilet paper and hand sanitiser! The ducks are super friendly too, especially 'Hoppy', the one-legged mallard.

Reviewed over 1 year ago

Lucy Oury's avatar

Lucy Oury

Ranking: 8/10

For a free DOC campsite, this is a great option. The long drop toilet was pretty dirty and smelly, but does the job! The lakeside setting is nice, with ducks wandering around and the chance to spot some rarer species. Sandflies not so bad here as on the west coast. Willow trees provide fairly good privacy, but the site is clearly popular so get there early for a good spot.

Reviewed over 1 year ago

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Camping NZ App

Every camping site on your iPhone™, iPad™ or Android™ phone or tablet. Avoid camping penalties using this council approved app. Featuring offline maps.

Download from the App Store Download Android app on Google Play

Cathy Mead's avatar

Cathy Mead

Ranking: 9/10

This was our first night in an RV and what a place to begin! The ability to camp right on the lakeside was great - not withstanding the various bugs, spray essential. The weather was perfect so the views and the colours magical. The long drop toilet had no paper but it did have sanitiser. A great place to start.

Reviewed almost 2 years ago

Fabio Flepp's avatar

Fabio Flepp

Ranking: 10/10

This was the very first campground we tented at in New Zealand. It was freezing cold in early January, the snow nearly fell all the way down to the lake. But the scenery with the white peaks and the lake with the blue ducks was just amazing. The toilet was fine. Free DOC site, very cool.

Reviewed almost 2 years ago

Kelly Roxanne's avatar

Kelly Roxanne

Singapore

Ranking: 7/10

Big campsite but very popular and crowded. Only one long-drop toilet that comes with toilet paper and hand sanitizer. It stays rather clean considering the number of people here in summer (February). Not much sandflies when we arrived around 8pm but they were there in the morning when we woke. You can camp right by the lake if you come early enough!

Reviewed almost 2 years ago

52 reviews with the most recent first, showing page 1 of 4.

Thanks to all the good people working for the NZ Department of Conservation - for all your hard work - making NZ more beautiful, accessable and healthy! Cheers 😍

Lilia's avatar

Lilia

Ranking: 2/10

It's already not for free i was surprised when i realized that. Without water supply i was not happy...

Reviewed 22 days ago

Kiri Edwards 's avatar

Kiri Edwards

Ranking: 9/10

Open again August 2018. Beautiful location. All new fencing, bitumen and parking sites in place. Good longdrop toilet, didn't smell and had toilet paper. Now $8 per person per night. Lots of friendly ducks. Two hoppy ducks with wonky legs. Wanted to stay longer due to beautiful location. Would recommend.

Reviewed 4 months ago

Conservation Campsite Pass

Save up to 70% on campsite fees! Support conservation and experience the natural beauty of NZ. 74 Department of Conservation campsites, one convenient pass.

Get the Pass

Sezz bella 's avatar

Sezz bella

Ranking: 1/10

This place is still closed.

Reviewed 7 months ago

Clobby's avatar

Clobby

Ranking: 6/10

CLOSED ON 2nd March 2018.
The location looks fantastic, can’t comment on staying there because it was closed off by large fences and gravel trucks. I can’t give it a proper rating, just a neutral 6/10 for location. I just felt a notice of closure, even temporary would help others.

Reviewed 10 months ago

Top Ranked NZ Deals Pass

Access savings worth hundreds of $$ on Top Ranked NZ Accommodation and Activities for just $1 per day.

Get deals pass

Jarod Haegel's avatar

Jarod Haegel

Australia

Ranking: 10/10

Brilliant view of lake surrounded by the hills. Can park right next to the water. Lots of ducks. Make sure you get there early since the good spots fill up fast. Good drop toilet. Popular place so expect neighbours. This is the best free camp site in NZ!

Reviewed 11 months ago and experienced in November 2017

Pirita Latja's avatar

Pirita Latja

Finland

Ranking: 9/10

Very nice free campsite by a lake on the way to Arthur's Pass. Lots of space, can be a bit windy but hey we're in the mountains. Clean long drop toilets. Good camping.

Reviewed about 1 year ago

Sanne Heil's avatar

Sanne Heil

Ranking: 8/10

This is one of the most beautiful free camp sites we’ve stayed! Great spot at the lake and surrounded by mountains. Be sure to arrive early as it fills up pretty quickly. The camp site’s description says that there should be a water point but we couldn’t find it?!

Reviewed about 1 year ago

Avoid Camping Fines!

The only camping map where each location is approved by every regional council in NZ. So if it shows on the map, you’re allowed to stay.

The Rankers Camping NZ app, is also in association with…

Sally Caboche's avatar

Sally Caboche

Australia

Ranking: 10/10

April 2017 This was the first night of our 2 week road trip around the South Island.Having clambered around the rocks at Castle Hill until late afternoon, Lake Pearson was just a short 20 mins up the road. The wind picked up a bit through the night but we were relatively sheltered amongst the trees right on the lake's edge. We woke to a fresh dusting of snow on the peaks and were greeted by a spectacular view and friendly ducks ... and yes hoppy was a keen visitor with us, too. The site was beautiful; there were a handful of other vans and all was quiet. The long drop was clean and the hand sanitizer was a nice touch. It was the best free campsite of our trip and rated in our top 3 of all sites we stayed at.

Reviewed about 1 year ago and experienced in April 2017

Katy Coutts's avatar

Katy Coutts

Ranking: 8/10

What a great find for free! Stayed here about 12 times over 2 months as climbing in the area. Exceptionally busy over Easter but quieter after, though always at least 10 vehicles, even when - 5°c! However, DOC do a great job with the toilet (long drop) - always stocked with toilet paper and hand sanitiser! The ducks are super friendly too, especially 'Hoppy', the one-legged mallard.

Reviewed over 1 year ago

Lucy Oury's avatar

Lucy Oury

Ranking: 8/10

For a free DOC campsite, this is a great option. The long drop toilet was pretty dirty and smelly, but does the job! The lakeside setting is nice, with ducks wandering around and the chance to spot some rarer species. Sandflies not so bad here as on the west coast. Willow trees provide fairly good privacy, but the site is clearly popular so get there early for a good spot.

Reviewed over 1 year ago

Camping NZ App Icon

Camping NZ App

Every camping site on your iPhone™, iPad™ or Android™ phone or tablet. Avoid camping penalties using this council approved app. Featuring offline maps.

Download from the App Store Download Android app on Google Play

Cathy Mead's avatar

Cathy Mead

Ranking: 9/10

This was our first night in an RV and what a place to begin! The ability to camp right on the lakeside was great - not withstanding the various bugs, spray essential. The weather was perfect so the views and the colours magical. The long drop toilet had no paper but it did have sanitiser. A great place to start.

Reviewed almost 2 years ago

Fabio Flepp's avatar

Fabio Flepp

Ranking: 10/10

This was the very first campground we tented at in New Zealand. It was freezing cold in early January, the snow nearly fell all the way down to the lake. But the scenery with the white peaks and the lake with the blue ducks was just amazing. The toilet was fine. Free DOC site, very cool.

Reviewed almost 2 years ago

Kelly Roxanne's avatar

Kelly Roxanne

Singapore

Ranking: 7/10

Big campsite but very popular and crowded. Only one long-drop toilet that comes with toilet paper and hand sanitizer. It stays rather clean considering the number of people here in summer (February). Not much sandflies when we arrived around 8pm but they were there in the morning when we woke. You can camp right by the lake if you come early enough!

Reviewed almost 2 years ago