Take advantage of the search to browse through the World Heritage Centre information.

Nahanni National Park

Nahanni National Park

Located along the South Nahanni River, one of the most spectacular wild rivers in North America, this park contains deep canyons and huge waterfalls, as well as a unique limestone cave system. The park is also home to animals of the boreal forest, such as wolves, grizzly bears and caribou. Dall's sheep and mountain goats are found in the park's alpine environment.

Description is available under license CC-BY-SA IGO 3.0

Parc national Nahanni

Situé le long de la Nahanni Sud, l'un des cours d'eau les plus spectaculaires d'Amérique du Nord, ce parc comporte de profonds canyons, de grandes cascades, ainsi qu'un ensemble unique de grottes karstiques. Le parc abrite, de plus, maintes espèces animales caractéristiques des forêts boréales comme le loup, le grizzli et le caribou. On trouve également le mouflon de Dall et la chèvre de montagne dans l'environnement alpin du parc.

Description is available under license CC-BY-SA IGO 3.0

منتزه ناهاني الوطني

يقع هذا المنتزه على امتداد نهر ناهاني الجنوبي، أحد أروع مجاري المياه على الإطلاق في أميركا الشمالية، ويحوي أودية ضيقة عميقة وشلالات ضخمة ومجموعة فريدة من المغارات ذات التضاريس الكلسية. فضلاً عن ذلك، يأوي هذا المنتزه العديد من الأجناس الحيوانية التي تشتهر بها الغابات الشمالية كالذئب، ودب الغريزلي، ورنّة كندا. كما تضم هذه البيئة الألبية أجناساً أخرى كالأغنام وماعز الجبل.

source: UNESCO/CPE
Description is available under license CC-BY-SA IGO 3.0



source: UNESCO/CPE
Description is available under license CC-BY-SA IGO 3.0

Национальный парк Наханни

Парк протягивается вдоль реки Саут-Наханни, одной из самых живописных и диких рек Северной Америки, и включает глубокие каньоны и мощные водопады, а также уникальную систему карстовых пещер. В парке охраняются северные леса с их типичной фауной, включая волка, гризли и карибу. В высокогорной части парка обитают баран-толсторог и снежная коза.

source: UNESCO/CPE
Description is available under license CC-BY-SA IGO 3.0

Parque Nacional del Nahanni

Situado a lo largo del Nahanni Sur, uno de los rí­os mí¡s espectaculares de América del Norte, este parque posee profundos cañones y grandes cascadas, así­ como un conjunto único de grutas kí¡rsticas. El parque alberga ademí¡s numerosas especies de animales caracterí­sticas de los bosques boreales, como el lobo, el oso grizzli y el caribú. En el medio alpino del parque se pueden encontrar también el muflón de Dall y la cabra montés.

source: UNESCO/CPE
Description is available under license CC-BY-SA IGO 3.0


source: NFUAJ

Nationaal park Nahanni

Het nationaal park Nahanni ligt langs de Zuid-Nahanni rivier, een van de meest spectaculaire wilde rivieren in Noord-Amerika. Het park omvat 4.700 vierkante kilometer ongerept natuurgebied met diepe rivier canyons dwars door bergketens, enorme watervallen, een complex kalkstenen grottenstelsel en warmwaterbronnen. Het park vormt de thuisbasis van dieren die voorkomen in boreale bossen, zoals wolven, grizzly beren en kariboes. In het alpiene deel van het park zijn Dall schapen en berggeiten te vinden.

Source: unesco.nl

Nahanni National Park
Outstanding Universal Value

Brief synthesis

Nahanni National Park World Heritage property, located in Canada’s Northwest Territories, is a 470,000 hectare undisturbed natural area of deep river canyons cutting through mountain ranges, with huge waterfalls and complex cave systems. The geomorphology of the property is outstanding in its wealth of form and complexity of evolution. Fluvial processes and features predominate. Within the property are examples of almost every distinct category of river or stream that is known, along with one of North America’s most impressive waterfalls, Virginia Falls. The Flat River and South Nahanni River are older than the mountains they dissect and have produced the finest examples of river canyons in the world, north of 60º. The injection of igneous rock through tectonic activity has resulted in spectacular granitic peaks.

Criterion (vii): The South Nahanni River is one of the most spectacular wild rivers in North America, with deep canyons, huge waterfalls, and spectacular karst terrain, cave systems and hot springs. Exposure of geologic and geomorphologic features includes the meanders of ancient rivers, now raised high above present river levels.

Criterion (viii): In Nahanni National Park, there is exceptional representation of on-going geological processes, notably fluvial erosion, tectonic uplift, folding and canyon development, wind erosion, karst and pseudo-karst landforms, and a variety of hot springs. The major geologic and geomorphologic features provide a combination of geological processes that are globally unique.


Nahanni National Park was established in 1976 and was inscribed on the World Heritage List in 1978. In 2009, Canada greatly expanded the limits of the national park by adding 2,500,000 hectares to establish the Nahanni National Park Reserve. The expanded protected area now totals about 3 million hectares and provides important protection to the property’s geological heritage and the South Nahanni River system. The boundary of the World Heritage site remains as originally inscribed. Over 95% of the World Heritage property is now surrounded by the larger national park reserve boundary, providing it with excellent protection and ensuring the integrity of its Outstanding Universal Value.

As a result of its remote location, the absence of permanent inhabitants, a very low human population density in the greater region, the support from Indigenous peoples, and national park legislation that prioritizes management for maintenance of ecological integrity, there are no significant threats to the property. There is, however, the potential for resource development in the broader ecosystem surrounding the property.

Protection and management requirements

Nahanni National Park World Heritage property is within Nahanni National Park Reserve, established under the Canada National Parks Act which provides effective legal protection for the property. Under the requirements of this legislation, the property has a management plan that provides direction for protecting the features of the property that are the basis for its Outstanding Universal Value, as well as for providing opportunities for visitors to experience and learn about the park reserve.

The park reserve is managed co-operatively with the Dehcho First Nations (DFN), the umbrella group that represents First Nations and Métis people in the Dehcho region of the Northwest Territories. The Naha Dehé Consensus Team, made up of representatives from Parks Canada and the DFN, is the body that undertakes co-operative management to maintain the ecological integrity of the national park reserve. The Consensus Team works with other levels of government, and other partners and stakeholders in its ongoing efforts to ensure the ecological integrity of Nahanni National Park Reserve.

Special attention will be given over the long term to monitoring and taking appropriate actions related to a number of factors in and near the property. Specifically, these include potential impacts from proposed mining developments near, but not within the World Heritage property. Parks Canada continues to work closely with federal and territorial departments on permitting and monitoring for these proposed mining sites. All mining activities will be subject to an Environmental Impact Assessment and if approved will be further subjected to the appropriate regulations to mitigate risks to the ecosystem. Park staff and its network of partners work together to monitor park ecosystems for stressors from inside and outside the property, which could include human use such as biological and physical resource use; changes in wildlife populations; ecological disturbances such as fire; potential impacts from climate change and sudden geological events; and the potential for invasive or hyper-abundant species.

  • Property inscribed for both geological and ecological values under natural criterion N (ii) before 1994. Criterion N (i) [Operational Guidelines 2002] was added. For more details see Decision 30.COM 8D.1.