The Department of Conservation's summer visitor numbers reveal a dip in numbers for the first time in three years.
Visitor numbers to DoC sites dipped from 84 per cent over February 2021 to 73 per cent in February 2022. Elswhere in the network, hiking numbers were down by a fifth.
After a pandemic boost for tramping and camping, it appears some New Zealanders have had their fill of nature and are over the outdoors.
DoC's head of Heritage and Visitors Tim Bamford said the dip was "Unsurprising", after the demand following Covid-19 Lockdowns.
"Three-quarters of us still headed outdoors" he said, but a slight drop was to be expected following as life gets back to normal, albeit with some continued disruption in the 21/22 season.
"Time pressures mean we mostly like to get out for short walks and to beaches near to where we live. And we mostly stay in huts or campgrounds at weekends or during school holidays."
The reason why Kiwis were visiting conservation sites was to find space and wellbeing - 'taking time out to enjoy the peace and quiet' - while the second and third top reasons cited were 'fun' and 'physical exercise'.
Camping remained popular with over 100,000 New Zealanders heading under tents this summer.
Although this was a 5 per cent drop from last year, there was little change in demand in spite of the introduction of vaccine certificates to use DoC campgrounds and huts being introduced in December.
Many 'Great Walkers' hung up their boots over the summer. After a high of 48,000 walkers on the network of multi-day hikes - this dropped 20 per cent to 40,000 trampers on the Great Walk network this summer.
Some of this was due to local restrictions, cancellations and even hikers visiting other bunks on the network.
While 2020/21 saw a huge boom from domestic visitors to New Zealand parks and facilities, overall it was much lower than pre-pandemic.
"While Omicron and border restrictions meant overall fewer people visited conservation areas over summer 2021/22 compared with the year before, these places remain an important part of many New Zealanders' lives," said Bamford.
Although the drop in numbers was to be expected, he said DoC's priority was to nurture the connection to the outdoors that many Kiwis made over the past two years.
Short walks, affordable family-friendly camping facilities and maintenance of heritage sites would be top areas for improvement.
Things DoC wanted to see less of was damage to trails and dogs entering national parks.
Four out of ten visitors to conservation land reported damage to trails and facilities.
The top peeves of the Department have been dogs being taken onto trails where they are not permitted, litter and human waste.
The behaviour of boaters and four-wheel drivers in wildlife areas was also a top complaint to DoC.
"With borders reopening, it's really important we visit the outdoors responsibly to limit our impact and safeguard our natural environments and wildlife for future generations."