Sign Up
Newsletter Signup
Free Fodor's Newsletter

Subscribe today for weekly travel inspiration, tips, and special offers.

Passport: Your weekly travel wrap-up
Today's Departure: Your daily dose of travel inspiration

Upper South Island and the West Coast Sights

The Natural Flames Experience

  • 47 Waller St. Map It
  • Murchison
  • Local Interest–Sight

Updated 02/18/2014

Fodor's Review

There are a handful of places in the world where you can find a natural gas flame, none in a natural ancient forest setting such as this one, near Murchison. It's been quietly glowing since the 1920s, when oil prospectors smelled natural gas seeping from the ground and put a match to it. Merve and Shirley Bigden have sole access rights, across a private deer farm then through Department of Conservation forest to the flame. The four-hour tour involves a short, scenic drive up the Mangles River valley, a talk about oil drilling history, a one-hour backcountry walk (you might get wet feet) through farmland and forest to the flame, where you'll be treated to pancakes and tea, cooked up on the natural fire. You're likely to see farmed deer and lots of native birds. Tour groups are restricted to eight.

Sight Information


47 Waller St., Murchison, Tasman, 7007, New Zealand

Map It


0800-687–244-free in New Zealand only

Sight Details:

  • Tours leave from Murchison township daily at 9:30 am and 2 pm

Updated 02/18/2014


Map View

Map of

What's Nearby

  • Restaurants
  • Sights
  • Hotels

See all sights in Upper South Island and the West Coast

Add Your Own Review

When did you go?

Minimum 200 character count

How many stars would you give?




Don't Miss



No Thanks

Love To Travel?

Get FREE e-mail communications from Fodor's Travel, covering must-see travel destinations, expert trip planning advice, and travel inspiration to fuel your passion.

How we use your email

Thank You

Now sit back, relax, and check your inbox to start planning your next travel adventure.

Please tell us more about the type of travel you're interested in. Check all that apply.