Another day, another instalment of This Is Why We Can’t Have Nice Things.

This time it comes straight outta New Zealand. The country is famed for its abundant natural beauty, and the South Island‘s Lake Wanaka is no exception. The tranquil watering hole is home to a very special tree that’s become something of an Instagram sensation; and it’s slowly paying the price.

Known simply as the Lake Wanaka Tree, the willow sits solitarily in the shallow waters of the lake. Lately, water levels have been low enough that tourists have been wading out to the tree and climbing it in an effort to take the most wild photos. The tree has already been damaged, with a branch snapping off just before Christmas last year thanks to an dumb bum climber.

But now, the New Zealand Tourism Board has said enough is enough.

Speaking to Lonely Planet, the arboricultural officer for the Queenstown Lakes District Council, Tim Errington, explained that the tree is already fragile to begin with.

The crack willow’s brittle wood breaks easily and because the roots of the tree are totally submerged in cold water, the tree has a difficult time regenerating after damage.

He said that from now on, more will be done to protect the precious natural landmark.

“Warning signs will be placed near the tree identifying the issues around climbing the tree, though we really want to avoid putting up fencing as this would have a significant impact on the amenity of the willow tree and take away some of the beauty associated with its stunning backdrop.

Though, should any further damage be sustained, Queenstown Lakes District Council may have to look into more substantial solutions to the issue around people climbing and damaging this very unique tree,” said Errington.

Warning signs in both English and Mandarin will be erected near the tree, ensuring it can live a happy, and branchful, life.


Bring me here #Repost @luxurybackpacking with @instatoolsapp ・・・ As I promised I'd stop posting photos from the Cook Islands for a while, here's a picture of a tree instead ???? Okay jokes aside, it's actually a pretty fascinating tree in Lake Wanaka in New Zealand ???????? Its grown in a lake and is the only tree in the area (or world? ????) to have done it! Crazy right?! ???? :::: Have you seen the famous That Wanaka Tree? ???? :::: • • • #thatwanakatree #wanakatree #wanaka #lakewanaka #purenewzealand #newzealandfinds #naturalgeographic #phototheday #awesome_photographers #eclectic_shotz #newzealandvacations #travelnewzealand #nzmustdo #naturalbeauty #sonya7rii #travelersnotebook #travelblogger #travelphotography #naturephotography #naturelovers #natureshot #earthawesome #beautifuldestinations #wonderfuldestinations #beautifulmatters #lovewanaka #newzealandguide #newzealandvacations #sunset_ig #earthpix

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Source: Lonely Planet
Image: @doalltravel / Instagram