According to Maori mythology the volcano, Mt Taranaki once stood in the center of the North Island near the volcanoes of Tongariro, Ruapehu, and Ngauruhoe. However, Taranaki and Tongariro clashed for the right to be the husband of another mountain, the beautiful Pihanga. Tongariro drove Taranaki southwest towards the coast and to where today sits the modern city of New Plymouth. From then on he has stood there alone and the eruptions of Mt Tongariro remind Taranaki that there is no way back for him. When viewed from above you will see that the picturesque Taranaki has a perfectly round base. Its height is 2518 meters above sea level and the last eruption occurred in 1854. In 1881 the Egmont National Park was founded around the volcano - a paradise for lovers of hiking and the great outdoors. Within it is The Goblin Forest, which was another setting for the filming of the movie The Lord of the Rings.
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