Auckland trail notes



Te Araroa section: Te Araroa's Auckland region begins at Mangawhai Heads, a popular holiday and surf destination accessible by road. From there, it is a long, scenic, beach walk to another holiday settlement of Pākiri.


From Mangawhai Heads carpark, follow the road to the walkway by 44 Wintle Street, which leads down to the estuary. Follow the estuary past a camping ground, a boat ramp and holiday baches until wooden steps lead up to the Findlay Street walkway. From Findlay Street, head left into Molesworth Drive. Immediately after crossing the estuary, the trail leaves Molesworth Drive to follow the Back Bay Boardwalk for 1km, bypassing a busy road to enjoy the coastal wetlands on a path built by local volunteers. The route returns to Molesworth Drive to continue until reaching Mangawhai Village. Then a right into Moir Street, left into Insley Street and across the estuary, then left into Black Swamp Road. Follow this road until reaching Pacific Road, which leads you through a forestry block to the beach and the next stage of Te Araroa.

Bypass Note: You could obtain a boat ride across the estuary to the Mangawhai Spit to avoid the road walking section. You must take care of sand-nesting birds on this Scientific Wildlife Reserve — please stick to the shoreline.

Just 1km south, a stream cuts across the beach, and it can go over thigh height, as can other water crossings on this track. Follow the coast southwards for another 2km, then take the track over Te Ārai Point. Once back on the beach, continue south for 12km (fording Poutawa Stream on the way) until you cross the Pākiri River, then head inland to reach the end of Pākiri River Road.



No dogs allowed

Lower tide best: check best times for walking on Mangawhai Spit

Warning; when heavy rain & high tide coincide these rivers can be deep; never cross flooded rivers; Environment Wildlife Sanctuary - avoid dune nesting sites; no dogs allowed.

*Please take care all the way down the beach and avoid entering taped/marked nesting sites, particularly if needing to venture upstream to cross. Where possible, avoid the sand-dune area completely.



Northern Start: Beach carpark, Wintle Street, Mangawhai Heads
Southern End: Beach access, Pakiri Beach


Unfortunately, long haul bus services pass by 19kms away at Kaiwaka so getting to Mangawhai would necessitate a pre-arranged pick up by a willing accommodation provider - see local transport below.

Local transport 

Leabourn Shuttles P: 09 423 7416 - E: 


Mangawhai Heads

Mangawhai Village

  • Tudor Oaks Motel - 47 Moir St, Mangawhai - P: 09 431 5393 or 027 493 1901 - E: 
  • Riverside Holiday Park - 41 Black Swamp Rd - P: 09 431 4825 - E: - tent sites, caravans, units, kitchen, laundry, wifi and TV/games room.
  • Mangawhai Camping - We have a basic cottage and tenting with water, electricity and toilet in our small orchard at the Mangawhai village close to Shops and food. Koha of $10pp appreciated. Call first please on Oh too one, 796 496. Your hosts - Mark and Kerry     

Te Arai Point

Car parking, toilets and picnic areas

No tenting allowed. There is a small SCC campground (up to 10 SCC campervans) for SCC campervans only, pre-booking through the Auckland Council is required. 


  • Pākiri Beach Holiday Park - 261 Pakiri River Rd, Pākiri P: 09 422 6199  E: & Shop hours 9 am – 5:00 pm. Limited numbers a limited number of camp sites available for TA walkers at a reduced rate of $20.00 per night with a maximum of 6 people. Tents must be within the site markers.  Summer booking are very high, so we highly recommend booking in advance. The Christmas and New Year period is heavily booked and we may not be able to accommodate everyone.  We have a communal kitchen with fridges and microwaves, and bathrooms, and laundry facilities available). Showers are 50c for 4 minutes and laundry is $2 per load.
  • Pākiri Paradise on the Ridge - 505 Rodney Road, Pakiri, phone 021 066 2108, - AIRBNB - Guest Room. Also accepting campers and charging $10.00 pp for site and water.  This is south of Pakiri, up the hill near km 475.5, 200m off trail

Food and Supply

Mangawhai Heads

  • 4 Four Square - 3 Wood Street, Mangawhai Heads - P: 09 431 4656
  • Mangawhai Deli - Shop 2, 7 Wood Street, Mangawhai Heads - P: 09 431 5887

Mangawhai Village

  • Supervalue - Moir Street, Mangawhai Village - P: 09 431 4585 Hours: Monday to Sunday: 7:00am – 7:00pm
  • New World supermarket -  83 Molesworth Drive, Mangawhai. Hours: Monday to Sunday: 7:00am – 9:00pm


Te Araroa trail section: The trail leaves the northern beaches and coast to head inland to Mt Tamahunga and Matakana.


From the Pākiri Beach access (adjacent to the Camp Ground), follow Pākiri River Road for 3km to the intersection with Pākiri Road. Cross over and continue south on Bathgate Road, past the school and several houses.

Beyond the southern end of Bathgate Road, go down what looks like a driveway to the Te Araroa sign. Follow the orange track markers leading up a ridgeline through steep farm pasture for 2.5km to a farm track near the end of Rodney Road. This climb offers fantastic views up the coast.

At the end of the ridge the track turns right (west) at a junction. The track to the left leads out to meet Rodney Rd. DOC have installed a long drop toilet on the spur track approximately 120m from the Te Araroa trail junction, close to Rodney Road. A little further off trail at 505 Rodney Road there is a campsite charging $10.00 pp for site and water – use the DOC toilet. Total 250m from Te Araroa.

The track turns west through more farmland and across a steep and muddy saddle (do take care when wet) before climbing through pine plantation into DOC native bush. At the summit, there is a helicopter platform which makes a good spot for resting.

Continuing on, this rough and occasionally slippery track soon descends steeply down before climbing again and passing beneath a weather satellite station. There's another rocky and slippery descent before the track levels out through regenerating bush.

A grassy hill affords some views (between the gorse) of the coast before continuing west on a well-formed track. The track leaves the ridge, crosses a stile and descends 200m to another stile before a narrow and slippery track takes walkers down, across a footbridge and to a short boardwalk across a swamp before another narrow, steep and slippery climb to Matakana Valley Road.

There is a possible koha campsite at private house at 777 Matakana Valley Road, just across the road.

Head south on Matakana Valley Road for 450m to the junction with Govan Wilson Road. If in need of re-supply, Matakana is 6km south down Matakana Valley Road.


Be considerate of animals and keep to the track; leave gates as you find them; no dogs, horses, guns, bikes or vehicles.

Potential hazards

  • Few water sources
  • Wasps are common on the section between Rodney Road and Mt Tamahunga


Northern Start: Beach access, Pākiri Beach
Southern End: Corner Govan Wilson and Matakana Valley Roads
If you are day walking this track, please note parking is in short supply at the western end of the track. The only places to park are in a small lay-by at the Govan Wilson Road intersection and a small bus-stop lay-by further south. Please do not park in any driveways.



Long-haul bus services to stop 9km away at Warkworth, the nearest town on SH1.

Local transport/transport to the trailhead


  • Pākiri Paradise on the Ridge - 505 Rodney Road, Pakiri, phone 021 066 2108, - AIRBNB - Guest Room. Also accepting campers and charging $10.00 pp for site and water.  This is south of Pakiri, up the hill near km 475.5, 200m off trail
  • Matakana Village Cottages (SC, B&B) - 202 Matakana Valley Rd - P: 09 422 9337 or 021 189 4242 - E:
  • Glamping Opportunity - Great house with an amazing view located at 732 Matakana Valley Rd - so just down from the end of the trail. The owners are happy to offer a 10% discount to those who are doing Te Araroa walk, just mention this when you book.

Food and Supply

  • Matakana Four Square - 21 Matakana Valley Road, Matakana - P: 09 422 7213 
  • Matakana Store and Post Centre - 21 Matakana Valley Rd, Matakana - P: 09 422 7213


Te Araroa section: Puhoi is situated on the beautiful Puhoi River and is one of New Zealand’s historic villages. It was originally settled in 1863 by immigrants from Bohemia, an area which is now the Czech Republic—situated 40km north of Auckland and the gateway to Matakana Coast and Country.


Govan Wilson to Dome — 15km / 6-7 hours

  • Warning: this track crosses private forestry land in the Waiwhiu Valley. Open daylight hours only — no camping, fires, dogs, horses, or vehicles.

Walk 3km to the end of Govan Wilson Road to the marked steps up onto the track.

Once up the steps from Govan Wilson Road, follow the clay four-wheel drive track. It passes a private home, so please keep to the track. Enjoy the views and the rusty old bus while following along the ridge to the junction with Conical Peak Road. Take the right fork and continue on this 4WD track until reaching a turnoff on the left onto a narrow bush track in DOC’s Tōtara Scenic Reserve.

The house owners provide a basic tent site. A compost toilet and some water may be available. The entrance gate is on the right, a little further down to road past the old boat, at km 484.5

Follow the marked bush track, which eventually descends steeply down the ridge into the Waiwhiu Valley. At the bottom of the hill, the track turns right across a small creek and follows the true right of the Waiwhiu Stream for approximately 1.3km. At this point, the track crosses the stream (take care not to slip) to enter private forestry land.  

DOC has installed a long drop toilet between the Waiwhiu Stream crossing and Waiwhiu Valley Road, km 489.5.

The track joins the Waiwhiu Valley Road, a private forestry road. Turn right and follow the road for approx 300m. Turn left onto a clay 4WD road (Fisher Road — however, signage may be removed). This track climbs steeply through pines. Just over the hill’s highest point, the track turns off the 4WD road (easy to miss) into the pines for a short climb to the ridgeline and DOC’s Dome Forest. 

This narrow bush track now follows along the ridgeline through attractive podocarp and broadleaf forest with glimpses of the surrounding countryside and coast.

The track climbs to the Dome trig. Then there are a few more ups and downs along the ridge, including a steep scramble around large rocks, on the way to the Lookout platform with views across the Mahurangi Peninsula to the Hauraki Gulf. The track then descends 1km on an upgraded walkway and steps to the Dome Cafe carpark and SH1. The Dome Cafe is closed, but the owners have kindly provided a camping space, with water and a toilet, for Te Araroa hikers.

Dome to Moirs Hill — 16km / 4-5 hours

  • Warning: Forestry and farming operations

Immediately across SH1 from the Tearooms is Kraack Road. Follow this road up to a forestry gate. Pass the gate and head along a southwest forestry road. Take a left down another track heading southwards, then cross westwards through regenerating native bush. This is thinly marked through to Smyth Road.

Follow Smyth Road south, turn right into Kaipara Flats Road, then left into Streamlands/Swamp Roads.

Turn right (west) into Old Kaipara Road and keep an eye out for the entrance to #121 when the route is marked up the driveway. Follow the markers up the driveway and around the edge of a fence (not up the driveway to the house), then follow the marked fenceline up to and along the ridge to Edgerley Road; please use the stiles. Give stock a wide berth — they are very friendly.

Follow Edgerly Road for 1km before turning right (west) onto Woodcocks Road. A further 500m along, take a left into Matthew Road and follow it for 1 km. Running off the end of Matthew Road is a forestry road to bring you up to the summit of Moirs Hill. As the forestry track runs onto Moirs Hill Road, continue straight ahead past DOC’s Waihunga Track and the radio transmission tower shortly after.

A gate and Private Property sign block vehicle access to the forestry road at the end of Matthew Road. Te Araroa walkers are welcome to squeeze around the gatepost on the left end of the gate and continue up the hill, following the forestry road. 

Just east of the transmission tower is a Te Araroa-signed track that heads 1.7km south down to Ahuroa Road. Signage indicates 5 km to Remiger Road and 9.5 km to Puhoi.

Note: stay on the clay/grass track. The gravel track you may see occasionally is a neighbouring forestry road. There are few markers as there is just pine and gorse for much of the way.

Dunns Ridge Track — 2.5km / 1 hour

  • Warning: Farming operations and predator control — please do not freedom camp in this area

From the Ahuroa — J Tolhopf Road intersection, head south 1km down J Tolhopf Road until you pass a rural residential subdivision, then reach a widened area of the sealed road with car parking. Enter through the gate just past the carpark, and follow the fenceline up and over the ridge to the bushline. 

From this bushline, follow orange markers across and through part of Dunn’s Bush (a Queen Elizabeth II National Trust reserve, with loop tracks back to Ahuroa Road) until you pass the “Sugarloaf” rock formation. A stile is in place if you want to climb up to this very peaceful and picturesque spot with beautiful views across the valley and out to the coast.

Otherwise, keep heading southeast on the ridge and follow markers through the farm paddocks. The route briefly joins a farm track and then leaves it again to follow the fenceline — please stick strictly to the marked route and follow the fenceline, descending steeply to Remiger Road.

On reaching Remiger Road turn right and cross the bridge over a small creek. On the left, the Remiger Road Conservation Area offers free camping with a small shelter, picnic tables, water supply (treatment recommended) and a toilet.  Camp on the grass near the shelter, avoiding the young trees and shrubs planted to enhance this DOC site.

Follow Remiger Road 1km to the intersection with Ahuroa Road — directly opposite you is a swing bridge onto the Puhoi Track.


Potential hazards

  • Vehicles on road or track
  • Poisons & traps
  • Farming operations
  • Forestry operations
  • River crossings - Never cross flooded rivers
  • Small stream crossings
  • Track exposed to sun, wind or cold
  • Few water sources between Dome and Puhoi 

No dogs allowed

For tramping tracks, it’s recommended you carry appropriate safety gear including a map, compass, whistle, warm clothing, raincoat, basic medical kit, strong footwear, food and water. Cellphones can work on the ridgelines.


Northern Start: Junction of Govan Wilson and Matakana Valley Road
Southern End: Junction of Ahuroa and Remiger Road, Puhoi


Getting there/away

Long haul bus services stop 9km away at Warkworth, the nearest town on SH1.

Local transport/transport to the trailhead


Govan Wilson

  • Roma and Graham at Totara Bend are located on Woodcocks Rd between Edgerley and Mathews Rd directly on the trail at km 507.5. Campsites and shower available please ring or text before to make sure they have room – mobile 021 759 991. They also have a glamping cabin and self-contained unit if you fancy a bit of a treat at reasonable prices. Water available to refill your water bottles. 
  • Twin Rimus (Matt and Jas) - Cottage for rent at 107 Govan Wilson Rd. Book in advance through airbnb


  • Mahurangi Backpackers - 11 Wickens Place, Warkworth - P: 09 425 7513
  • Walton Park Motor Lodge - 2 Walton Ave, Warkworth - P: 09 425 8149 - E: 
  • Ribbonwood B&B - 7 Thompson Rd, Warkworth - P: 09 422 2685 - E: 
  • Trail Angel, Warkworth - Carolyn Caukwell - P: 0212741724 - Offering pick up from Dome Valley end of trail, and a place to stay for the night, wash clothes, share a meal, and recharge.
  • Free accommodation offered on Sandspit Road, near Warkworth. Double tents available, or put up your own. Fresh running creeks deep enough to swim in. 5 min walk to town centre
    Friendly kiwi family (grandparents, solo dad, 15yr boy) house is away from tent area so privacy guaranteed unless you want to share a drink or two with BBQ.
    Sight seeing available, P: Bob 021 026 80267 

Detour option for accommodation - 2 km south 

Warkworth Sheepworld Caravan Park - Cabins and camping - SH 1, Dome Valley, Warkworth - P: 09 425 9962 

Food and Supply

New World Supermarket - 6 Percy St, Warkworth - P: 09 425 1040 


Te Araroa trail section: Enjoy a mix of forest types with good bird life and views of Puhoi Valley.


Please remain on the track at all times, for personal safety and to protect the magnificent trees you pass.


Extreme rainfall has severely damaged the Puhoi swingbridge at km 519.  It is unusable until further notice. The Puhoi Track is closed at the swingbridge. It is necessary to use Puhoi Road from Remiger Road to Puhoi Village. Northbound walkers should not attempt to walk the track that starts in the Puhoi Domain across the river from the pub as they will not be able to re-cross the stream at the northern end of the track.  Check the Trail Status Alerts for any change to this situation 

Update 2nd February:  Track inspection has found that the Puhoi track is also blocked by a big slip across the track at 1.7 km east of the swing bridge (km 520.7)

From Remiger Road, cross the Puhoi River by swingbridge and climb through pines to an old ridge track. To your right a number of spectacular young kauri trees line the route please take care to stay on the gravel track here to prevent the spread of kauri dieback disease. There are glimpses at times of the Puhoi Valley below, which look particularly splendid in autumn. Curious fantails (otherwise known as pīwakawaka) may take an interest in you as you pass.

Climbing to the highest point on the track, you leave pine forest and move into wonderful native bush, descending through a mix of magnificent mature pūriri, tōtara and rimu and regenerating young growth. When you reach the small footbridge, look up and you may see our resident morepork (or ruru).

Continuing through more pine then up the final climb. There is then another stretch of beautiful native bush and kauri in close proximity before exiting onto the formed track through farmland with great views of the valley below. There's another short bush block then out onto a gravel track for 200m take care as this track can carry construction traffic for a new motorway being constructed.

Before the final descent, cross a stile onto the Puhoi Lookout Loop Track. Here you have a choice the route is marked to head further east down a gentler grade with steps down through more bush, or in front of you is a more direct route down past the Arthur Dunn memorial lookout, but note that when the ground is wet underfoot this can be steep and slippery.

You exit into the Puhoi Domain. Directly opposite is the Puhoi General Store and the historic Puhoi Pub, where well-deserved refreshments may be in order and good chats with the friendly locals are guaranteed.

There is a small 3-car parking bay at the Remiger Road end of the track and plenty of parking in the Puhoi Domain carpark at the Puhoi end of the track.


Potential hazards

  • Vehicles on road or track
  • Poisons and traps
  • Forestry operations
  • Few water sources


Northern Start: Junction of Remiger and Ahuroa Roads, Puhoi
Southern End: Puhoi Village


There is no official camping in Puhoi, but a polite enquiry at the Puhoi Hotel may prove worthwhile.  Puhoi is a Te Araroa friendly town

Food and Supply

Puhoi River Canoes - Puhoi Village (opposite Historic Church) - Open 1st Sept - 30 June - P: 09 422 0891 or 027 284 1672 - E: 


At the present time, the walking route to Wenderholm Regional Park is incomplete so, on an outgoing tide, you can hire a kayak for the downstream journey to Wenderholm. 



Tide information for Puhoi to Wenderholm by kayak

Potential hazards

  • Poisons & traps at Wenderholm Regional Park
  • Tides, waves & rivers - safer at low tide - better to paddle (SOBO) on outgoing tide, or (NOBO) incoming tide
  • Water - wear a lifejacket.

No dogs allowed


Northern Start: Puhoi Village
Southern End: Wenderholm Regional Park


Canoe and Kayak Hire

  • Puhoi Kayaks - 84 Puhoi Rd, Puhoi (Opposite the Historic Puhoi Church) - P: 027 484 1672   Puhoi Kayaks (formerly Puhoi River Canoe Hire) are part of the Puhoi to Wenderholm section of The Araroa.  Price is $50 per person. Hire includes Kayaks, all safety equipment and transport of your gear to your finish point.  Opening times - Daily 1st Sept - 30th June (Closed - Christmas Day)
  • Hibiscus Kayak Hire - P: 021 133 6938 - E: - $45 for Puhoi River, $50 for half-day (4hr) or $70 for 1-day hire if you want to go further (pickup/delivery fee may apply depending on final destination). All hire includes kayak, paddle, lifejacket and drybag.
  • Auckland Sea Kayaks  - P: 0800 999 0899 (Freephone) - Operating throughout the summer months

Note: Exchange the kayak for your pack at the ramp on the Puhoi River side of Wenderholm Regional Park.

Requires an outgoing tide - check tides at Niwa Tide Calculator


There is camping available at the Schischka Campsite, turn left and walk 1km just after the Wenderholm main gates. 
Please do not freedom camp anywhere else within Wenderholm Regional Park.


Should tides not suit, or you don't wish to pay for kayaking from Puhoi to Wenderholm - it can be walked. When walking along SH1, please take caution as this road is very busy, and there are areas where the road shoulder is very narrow. SH1 is particularly busy during weekends (Friday-Sunday), public holidays, and from Christmas through to the and of January. There are also significant roadworks in this area, due to construction of the new motorway. We recommend kayaking as it is much safer and more enjoyable than walking these busy roads.



Please wear a hi-viz vest and/or pack cover if available

The road south from Puhui passes under and through extensive road construction. The path through this area is subject to change.  Watch for local signage and directions

From the Puhoi Domain, turn left/east and walk 1200m to SH1. Pass under the motorway bridge (under construction) and cross SH1 with extreme caution, then turn right/south, walking 2km on the east side of SH1, behind the barrier where possible.

Take the "offramp" towards Wenderholm/Waiwera as signposted on the Twin Coast Discovery Highway, then continue east a further 2.75km to the entry to Wenderholm Regional Park (Schischka Road).

It is 1km down the driveway to the start of the next route.


Cross SH1 with extreme caution as cars are travelling at 80-100km/h.  Walk as far off the road shoulder as you can, on the far side of the barrier fence where this is possible.

Potential hazards

  • Vehicles on road or track. Walk well off the road, over barrier where possible
  • Motorway construction and road works. Follow any instructions given by traffic management staff and signage.
  • Track exposed to sun, wind or cold
  • Few water sources


Northern Start: Puhoi Village

Southern End: Wenderholm Regional Park


Wenderholm Regional Park - Basic camping, duty ranger - Auckland Council - P: 09 366 2000

There is camping available at the Schischka Campsite, turn left and walk 1km just after the Wenderholm main gates. 
Please do not freedom camp anywhere else within Wenderholm Regional Park.


Te Araroa trail section: This section includes a low-tide walk and rock hop, and a fantastic view of the trail down Orewa Beach.


Wenderholm to Orewa Estuary - 11.5km / 3hr

  • Low tide route only

Requires an outgoing tide - check tides at Niwa

From the Puhoi River boat ramp at Wenderholm Regional Park, follow the sealed carpark road south-east for 200m to the Park's Information Board. Here, a map of the park is displayed. Walk through the grounds of the historic Couldrey House to join the Perimeter Track (clockwise over the headland is the most picturesque and has great views). Exit the track by the Waiwera Bridge on the Hibiscus Coast Highway. Cross the bridge and head down Waiwera Road to the beach. Time your walk so that you reach here about half an hour before low tide.

At low tide, it is an easy walk and rock hop around rocks to Hatfields Beach. Beware of slippery rocks.

At the southern end of the beach, take the public walkway steps up to Ocean View Road and follow the walkway signs south via footpaths back out to the Hibiscus Coast Highway. Just over the hill to the south is Lookout Point and the most fantastic view down Orewa Beach – a great sight no matter what the weather.

Note: Optionally, you can avoid Lookout Point by walking along the beach and rocks from Hatfields to Orewa at low tide. This option, however, would bypass the elevated coastal views.

Continue down the hill and walk through Arundel Reserve to Orewa Beach. About 1.5km south is the Orewa Beach Shopping Centre. (Orewa Beach is approx 3km long in total).

Orewa Estuary to Stillwater - 13km / 3 hours

From the southern end of Orewa Beach, follow the path to the bridge over the Orewa River.

At the south end of the bridge, take the path next to the bridge and turn west underneath the bridge onto Te Ara Tahuna (The Orewa Estuary Cycleway and Walkway)

Follow Te Ara Tahuna approx. 2.5km to the intersection of Longmore Lane and Millwater Parkway then turn south for 1km.

Turn right/south at the intersection of Millwater Parkway and Silverdale Street. On your left is the Silverdale Centre with a selection of shops, including a supermarket, outdoors shop and pharmacy. To your right are multiple banks (with ATMs), fast food outlets, butcher and greengrocer.

Continue on Silverdale Street to the intersection with Hibiscus Coast Highway where an underpass takes you safely under the road, and onto Tavern Road (past the historic Wade Tavern), up the hill to Forge Road/East Coast Bays Road.

Turn south onto East Coast Bays Road and walk 2km to the intersection with Spur Road. Turn east onto Spur Road and walk 1.4km to where it leads into Duck Creek Road. Continue a further 5km on Duck Creek Road to the Stillwater Boating Club where the next track commences.


Potential hazards

  • Vehicles on road or track Take extreme care on East Coast, Spur and Duck Creek Roads heading to Stillwater
  • Poisons & traps at Wenderholm Regional Park
  • Tides, waves & rivers - safer at low tide

No dogs allowed


Northern Start: Wenderholm Regional Park, Hibiscus Coast
Southern End: Stillwater Boating Club, Stillwater



There is no accommodation in Waiwera - the options you have are Schischka campground in Wenderholm Regional Park (north) or hostel/motel/campground accommodation in Orewa (south).



Silverdale Bed and Breakfast - 41 Whangaparaoa Rd, Silverdale (600m off the Te Araroa route) - Apartment - Studio - Caravan - P: 09 4211460 - E:


  • Stillwater Motor Camp - 2 Duck Creek Rd, Stillwater - P: 09 424 7518
  • Kereru Cottage - Stillwater Cres - P: 021 832358 (Lisa) 
  • Feijoa Cottage - 389 Duck Creek Rd, Stillwater - Contact Jane on 021 037 5338. Set on a rural property in Stillwater, Feijoa Cottage is a fully self-contained home away from home. If you're walking the Te Araroa Trail and want a night of luxury in a comfortable bed, a nice hot shower, to cook up a yummy meal and do your washing - you'll be walking right past their door.

Food and Supply

Waiwera minimart - 2 Waiwera Rd. Waiwera - P: 09 426 1470

Silverdale Centre - 61 Silverdale Street, Silverdale - P: 09 426 4716 - Includes Countdown Supermarket, pharmacy, outdoors store (Macpac), food outlets, The Warehouse, barber etc.


Te Araroa trail section: Follow Okura Bush Walkway around the coast before crossing Okura Estuary. Be careful not to disturb dotterels.


Low tide route

Check with NIWA for times to walk at low tide

Updated advice for Okura Estuary 14 September 2022: The tide calculator will indicate the water depth at the estuary crossing point above a standard level for Okura, of between 0.30 and 1.10 metres. Adding 0.15 m to this number will give a predicted maximum water depth across the deepest part of the channel at the recommended crossing point, near the south shore. Storm conditions and atmospheric pressure may alter this depth slightly.

From the jetty or ramp near the Stillwater Boating Club (Tel: 09 428 2185), walk to the eastern end of Duck Creek Road and the start of DOC’s Okura Bush Walkway. Follow this track around the coast, initially on grass and then along the beach past the historic Dacre Cottage to Dacre Point. At or near low tide you can walk along the beach and rocks below the cliffs all the way. At higher tide level there is a scenic track over the headland before Dacre Cottage. You can wade across the Okura Estuary at low tide (roughly hip-deep at the fourth steel pole marker in from the river mouth) across to the southwest end of the cliffs opposite. From the tip of the rocky Dacre point, look across to the headland. The cliffs at left drop down to a small bay where Te Araroa resumes. To the left of that bay from your view, where the cliffs are low, you should see a tall narrow steel pole. This is the fourth similar pole counting from left to right. Ignore the smaller wooden or white painted poles. From Dacre Point walk across the mud flats to the fourth pole and then continue into the bay where the grass comes down to beach level. 

Stingrays feed in the shallow water of the estuary.  They are not aggressive, but do not like being stepped on. To avoid contact tap the mud ahead with a hiking pole or splash the surface to disturb them

Okura Estuary crossing from Dacre Point

Northbound: Come off the cliff track into the beach. Turn right towards the river mouth 100m, then cross towards the fourth pole from the mouth. You are looking for thin metal posts, not big white ones, which are further upstream. The fourth pole should have an orange marker attached. This has been dislodged after storms on occasion. Once at the fourth pole turn slightly left and head due west to the tip of Dacre point. 

Southbound: Walk to the very end of the Dacre Point. You are targeting the small bay at the right end of the cliffs nearest the river mouth. The four narrow metal poles are can be seen from that point although it may be difficult to spot the ones nearest to the river mouth. Cross to the fourth pole from the river mouth. The pole to aim for should have orange triangle markers attached. At low water the base of the fourth pole is usually standing on mud just above the water next to the deeper channel. Low tides are variable so the pole may be standing in water even at the lowest tide on some days.

Once across the estuary (southbound), veer to the right around the southwest end of the cliffs and up into the Long Bay Regional Reserve. Pick up the coastal track that heads southeast to Long Bay. Note: This track passes Pohutukawa Bay, a male nudist beach.

While the tide is low it is possible to walk to Long Bay along the beach and rocks below the cliffs. The rock surfaces are very slippery when wet.

Update April 2023. The cliff-top path is closed between km 562.5 and km 563 due to severe and continuing track subsidence. The closed section may be bypassed by using the coastal track between Pokutukawa Bay (km 562.5) and Granny's Bay (km 563.7)

Shallower crossing route including 5km road walk
If the tide is not low enough for the normal estuary crossing there is an alternative crossing point at the sandspit, further up the Okura River
The official route, including the main estuary crossing near Dacre Point, is preferred if you can fit in with the low tide.

Southbound: From Dacre Point continue on the Okura Bush Track until you reach a spit with a shallower crossing to the ramp at the end of Okura River Road. After reaching the Okura boat ramp on the south shore walk up Okura River Road 2.2 km to the pine trees at the top of the hill. Turn sharp left down Vaughan's Road. Follow Vaughans Road and then Piripiro Point Drive for a combined 3 km. There is active road construction at the junction with Piripiri Point Drive but the road remains open. At the end of Piripiro Point Drive there is a wooden gate and gravel path leading to the right of the stockyards for 150 metres to a stile. This is an access track provided by Auckland Council to get around the track subsidence at km 563. From the stile follow the marker poles for 350 metres down to the cliff-top path at km 563.2. Turn right onto Te Araroa. From Granny's Bay (km 563.7) you can use the coastal path or the cliff-top walk for 1.5 km to Long Bay

Northbound: Previous road-based bypass routes are no longer available. From Long Bay you can use either the coastal track or the cliff-top walk as far as Granny's Bay (km 563.7). If you will be using the normal Te Araroa low-tide Okura Estuary crossing to Dacre point you should continue on the coastal track to Pohutukawa Bay (km 562.5) to get past the cliff-top path closure at km 563.

If you are using the shallower alternative crossing via Okura River Road take the cliff-top path from Granny's Bay up to the track blockage at km 563.2. Cross the stile on the left and follow the marker poles 350 metres to a second stile on the hilltop. Walk another 150 metres of gravel track, passing to the left of the stockyard to cross a wooden gate onto Piropiro Point Drive. Follow Piripiro Point Drive and then Vaughans Road for a combined 3 km to the pine trees and junction with Okura River Road. There is active road construction at the junction with Vaughans Road but the road remains open. Turn right and walk 2.2 km down Okura River Road to the boat ramp and shallower river crossing to the Okura sandspit. Walk down the river bank to rejoin Te Araroa at Dacre Point (km 560)

Take special care to avoid disturbing the dotterels nesting and feeding around the Okura sandspit. These birds are now rare and protected. Their vulnerable nesting sites are indicated by fencing, but the birds will often rest on the shore just above the high tide line. Keep well clear to avoid causing the birds to fly unnecessarily.

An older bypass route using East Coast Road and Glenvar Road is no longer usable as Glenvar Road is blocked by a road slip just before the junction with East Coast Road

The Okura Bush Scenic Reserve is currently closed to all walkers because of kauri dieback disease. The closure does not affect the official Te Araroa route, which crosses the estuary without entering the affected area. The Okura Bush Scenic Reserve previously offered an alternative route, following the Okura Bush Reserve track all the way to its end at Haigh Access Road, and then heading out on Haigh access Road to East Coast Bays Road and turn left/south to walk to Glenvar Road.

The estuary crossing can be avoided altogether by following East Coast Road from Browns Bay to Silverdale. Note that there is no access from Glenvar Road to East Coast Road. Take extreme care walking on East Coast Road as it is a high-volume road with traffic moving at speed.


Low tide estuary crossing — check the best times for walking. 

Please assess water safety before any water activity — based on the amount of recent rain, tides, currents, waves and your own confidence in the water.

No dogs are allowed at Long Bay Regional Park.

Dog restrictions apply on the beaches.

  • Poisons and traps
  • Tides, waves and rivers – safer at low tide
  • Take extreme care crossing Okura Estuary – cross at dead low tide only
  • River crossings – never cross flooded rivers
  • Track exposed to sun, wind or cold


Northern Start: Stillwater Boating Club, Stillwater

Southern End: Long Bay Regional Park, North Shore


  • For bus transport to or from Long Bay Regional Park, contact Auckland Transport — P: 0800 103080 or 09 366 6400 

Food and Supply

  • The snack kiosk is open only in summer.


Te Araroa trail section: This walk from Long Bay to Devonport never strays far from the coastline.


All-tide route follows cliff top tracks, pedestrian shortcuts, steps and footpaths. After heavy weather events, some areas can be affected so follow marked alternatives or self-navigate the streets.

You will need to take careful note of the time of low tide, as there are several points where you can be cut off by the rising water. If you want to walk the whole way during one low tide, prepare to do some wading. Alternatively, break the walk partway, and complete it at low tide the following day. At low tide only: check tide times

It is possible to walk almost all the way on the shoreline, but Auckland Council does not recommend this route. Rocks may be very slippery and unstable underfoot. Because high sandstone cliffs are subject to sudden rockfalls, please keep at least 10m out from the cliffs. 

Long Bay to Torbay

From Long Bay, near Marine Education Recreation Centre at the bottom of Beach Road, head up the Oneroa Track to Cliff Road. Go down Cliff Road to Rewi Street, turn left into Rock Isle Road, right into Waiake Street, left onto Beach Road and head down to Waiake Beach (Torbay).

Torbay to Browns Bay

Walk along the Waiake beachfront at Torbay, go up Beach Road for a short while and turn left into Sharon Road. At the end of Sharon Road, follow the Lotus Walk down to Manly Esplanade and Browns Bay Beach.

Browns Bay to Rothesay Bay

At the southern end of Browns Bay Beach follow the concrete path to the footbridge, which leads round onto the North Shore City Cliff Top Walkway, up the steps to Beechwood Road, past Dan Jones Bluff and down to Rothesay Bay.

Rothesay Bay to Murrays Bay

Coming out of the Cliff Top Walkway at Rothesay Bay, follow the path across the footbridge, through the reserve, and up into Rothesay Bay Road. From there turn left into Churchill Road, and just before the road curves right, head down Gumdiggers Trail and onto the Cliff Top Walkway, to emerge on Murrays Bay Reserve.

Murrays Bay to Mairangi Bay

From the reserve at the northern end of Murrays Bay, walk along the beachfront and then up the steps to the Cliff Top Walkway at the southern end of the beach. This leads up and over to come out on Mairangi Bay beachfront.

Mairangi Bay to Campbells Bay

From Mairangi Bay Beach head up Forde Way to Whitby Crescent. Turn left into Whitby and a little way along find Te Araroa signs pointing up Sea Dog Alley to View Road. Head left down View Road until you reach the Possum Ladder track on the left. This will take you down to Campbells Bay.

Campbells Bay to Castor Bay

Walk along Campbells Bay Beach, and up Huntly Road to Beach Road. Stay on Beach Road as far as JF Kennedy Memorial Park. Go through the park to the eastern edge and follow the track through to Rahopara Historic Reserve. From here take the path down to Castor Bay Reserve.

Castor Bay to Milford

From The Esplanade at Castor Bay there is no access, at any time of the tide, around the beach to Milford. Wairau Creek cannot be safely forded.

At the southern end of Castor Bay Esplanade, turn right along the concrete path and follow it left to climb the steps between the houses, emerging on Beach Road at the top of the hill. From there go down to Inga Road, and across the footbridge over Wairau Creek, through the reserve and onto Milford beach.

Milford to Takapuna 

You can walk all the way along the beach and rocks from the northern end of Milford Beach to the southern end of Takapuna Beach. Between Milford Beach and Takapuna Beach the route follows the North Shore City heritage trail Takapuna – Milford Walk and crosses private property thanks to the owners’ goodwill. Please respect the environment and the privacy of local residents, and do not trespass on private property outside the described route.

Note: The pathway in this area is not properly constructed, so please take care. Neither North Shore City Council, Te Araroa Trust, nor the private property owners accept any responsibility for any loss, damage or injury to you or your property arising from your use of this walkway.

Takapuna to Devonport

From the southern end of Takapuna Beach, head up Clifton Road to Lake Road. Walk down past Takapuna Grammar School and Belmont Intermediate School, turn left into Winscombe Road, and then right along Seacliffe Avenue and Hamana Street. At Old Lake Road, turn left to reach Narrow Neck Beach. At low tide it is possible to walk along the beach from Takapuna to Narrow Neck Beach.

From the southern end of the beach follow Vauxhall Road up and over, down to Bath Street on your left. At Bath Street turn left to reach Cheltenham Beach and walk along the sand as far as Cheltenham Road. 

Here, there are two options:

  • You may leave the beach at Cheltenham Road, and walk straight through to Devonport.


  • You may go to the end of the beach and up North Head to come down Takarunga Road. Then head left along King Edward Parade to finish at Devonport Wharf.

From Devonport Wharf, you can catch a Fullers ferry to link with the next stage of Te Araroa, Auckland’s coast to coast walk.

These is a printable map of the route.


  • Te Araroa traverses 10 cities. The North Shore Coastal Walk was Te Araroa’s first fully marked-up urban section. 
  • The Auckland isthmus is New Zealand's narrowest neck of land, never more than nine kilometres from north to south and less than 2 kilometres east to west. Given the distance, Maori used these as canoe portages, from the Waitemata Harbour and the Pacific Ocean on one side to the Manukau Harbour and the Tasman Sea on the other.
  • in 1840, New Zealand's first governor, Captain William Hobson, acquired some 3000 acres of Isthmus land from the Ngāti Whatua chiefs, a triangle whose base stretched some 12 kilometres along the Waitemata southern shore and whose apex was the summit of Maungawhau (Mt Eden).
  • Aside from the colonial governors, the best known early Aucklander was the Scot, John Logan Campbell. An adventurer and one of the first Auckland settlers, he became the city's most prominent businessman and mayor. He gifted Cornwall Park to the people of Auckland, with the park still run by a trust he helped to establish. Te Araroa passes by a statue of Campbell in that park. His grave, with the Latin inscription - si monumentum requires circumspice - "if you want a memorial, look about you" - is on the summit of Maungakiekie/One Tree Hill.


The trail is a mix of suburban footpaths, steep paths and steps, with some slippery and uneven surfaces and unstable rocks. Wear comfortable clothes and strong walking shoes, carry water, snacks, raincoat, sunscreen and a hat.

Caution: Parts of the signed route are very steep. There are steps and narrow grassy tracks which may become slippery in wet weather.

Potential hazards

  • Vehicles on road or track take care when walking in urban areas
  • Tides, waves and rivers safer at low tide
  • Track exposed to sun, wind or cold

Dog restrictions apply on the beaches.


Northern Start: Long Bay Regional Park, North Shore
Southern End: Devonport


North Shore

For bus transport to/from Long Bay Regional Park 

  • Auckland Transport for bus or train information - P: 0800 103080 freephone or 09 366 6400 
  • North Shore Taxis - P: 09 488 8000
  • Fullers Ferries - passenger ferry runs between Devonport Wharf and Auckland CBD. The trip takes 12 mins and generally departs every half hour - check the timetable. P: 09 367 9111 


North Shore

Also, throughout this section, there is a wide range of a variety of accommodation available.

Karin's Villa - 27 Clarence St, Devonport - P: 09 4458689 - E:

B&B accommodation with free internet and laundry.

Food and Supply

Short detour to Browns Bay Village

A range of shops including supermarket, cafes, banks and a pharmacy

Short detour to Mairangi Bay Village

A range of shops including supermarket, cafes, banks and a pharmacy

Short detour to Milford township

A range of shops including supermarket, cafes, banks and a pharmacy

Short detour to Takapuna township

A range of shops including supermarkets, cafes, banks and pharmacies.

Short detour to Devonport township

A range of shops including supermarkets, cafes, banks and pharmacies. Includes Devonport i-SITE Visitor Information Centre - Devonport Wharf, Devonport P: 09 3659906


Te Araroa section: The Auckland isthmus is New Zealand’s narrowest neck of land, never more than 9km from north to south and less than 2km east to west. Given the distance, Māori used these as canoe portages, from the Waitematā Harbour and the Pacific Ocean on one side, to the Manukau Harbour and the Tasman Sea on the other.


Printable route map

Please follow the map and signage in exploring the Auckland isthmus. Proceed roughly as follows: 

  • Cross Quay St onto Queen St
  • Customs St East
  • Emily Place
  • Princes St
  • Auckland University 
  • Alfred St
  • Grafton Rd
  • Auckland Domain
  • Auckland War Memorial Museum (adjacent to the route)
  • Park Rd
  • Mountain Rd
  • Clive Rd
  • Mt Eden Domain
  • Owens Rd
  • Cecil Rd
  • Epsom Ave
  • Through the Auckland College of Education
  • St Andrews Rd/Melville Park
  • Cross Gillies Ave to Kimberley Rd
  • Cross Manukau Rd and park to Pūriri Drive
  • Cross Greenlane West Rd to Cornwall Park
  • Pōhutukawa Drive and Olive Grove and up to One Tree Hill summit
  • Exit onto Haydn Ave, then onto Manukau Rd, and south through the Royal Oak roundabout
  • Continue on Manukau Rd (this leaves the Coast to Coast Walkway temporarily) and through Jellicoe Park
  • Grey St
  • Quadrant Rd
  • Arthurs St, and down a green corridor
  • Onehunga Bay Reserve, across the bridge to Orpheus Drive
  • Walk east along the path to cross the new pedestrian bridge to Mangere

TEMPORARY VARIATION  The new pedestrian bridge to Mangere will be closed for resurfacing from 18 November until 9 December 2022. Use the pedestrian underpass attached to the vehicle bridge. From the point where the footpath rises to align with the new pedestrian bridge at km 604.8, turn sharp left, away from the bridge, to use the short pedestrian bridge to cross over the road and join the path leading to the older route underneath the vehicle bridge.

The Isthmus

Auckland has long been known as Tāmaki Makaurau — "the spouse desired by a hundred lovers.” All who saw it for its fertile volcanic slopes, sheltered fishing sites, and access to the greatest waterway in New Zealand, the Waikato River, desired it.

The Coast to Coast walk takes you through landscapes shaped by 600 years of Māori occupation and through some of our finest natural and built heritage areas — woodland settings, windswept hills, charming parks and gardens, captivating architectural treasures, and fascinating geological landforms — all offering glimpses of times gone by.

You will also experience panoramic views stretching across Auckland city and the region. Most impressive is the vista of Auckland’s waterfront playground, the Hauraki Gulf, including the distinctive cone shape of Rangitoto Island.

Trail viewpoints also show:

  • To the North - the waters of the Waitematā Harbour, the islands of the Hauraki Gulf and the 600-year-old symmetrically-shaped shield volcano, Rangitoto.
  • To the Northeast - an old volcanic chain, the Coromandel Range.
  • To the East - the uplifted greywacke bulk of the Hunua Ranges.
  • To the South - the more gentle rise of the Bombay Hills, another old volcanic field.
  • To the West - the remnants of a once-mighty volcanic chain, the Waitakere Range.
  • To the Southwest - the vast Manukau Harbour.

The Urban Landscape

A warm climate, good rainfall and generous property sizes have encouraged an urban forest of mixed native and exotic trees with gardens at their feet. Street and park plantings date back to the 19th century. The oaks, often grown from acorns from English estates, and the plane trees brought from London reflect the colonial heritage. The distinctive pinnate shape of the Norfolk pines reflects Auckland’s sea-route beginnings - brought to early Auckland in tubs and sold by sailors. Many native trees also prevail in the parks.

The city’s early merchants built grand verandah villas on Princes Street, establishing what would become, alongside the later bungalows, a prevailing architectural pattern.

Native birds include the iridescent blue kingfishers (kōtare), fantail (pīwakawaka), and tui - distinguished by a white throat tuft and a melodious call, and the large wood pigeon (kererū).

Whau trees, whose wood is as light as balsa and were once used by Māori for net floats, still grow on Maungawhau (the hill of the whau tree). The trail passes a small forest of Tōtara and Rimu on the old volcano’s southern slopes, and Cornwall Park’s many native trees include an avenue of Pūriri, which the trail follows, and a young kauri grove. You will find introduced bird species en route, including the sparrow, blackbird, thrush and rock pigeons in the parks. Sizeable grassy areas attract the large black and white magpie and the bright green and red rosella, both introduced from Australia.


The volcanoes

Regarded as still active, Auckland’s volcanic field is geologically young, having produced mainly small-sized cones. Its pocket-sized volcanoes first erupted through the underlying isthmus rock over 50,000 years ago.

The Coast to Coast walkway passes five volcanic sites and passes over the 183m high summit.

Albert Park, now a green shoulder of the Central Business District, is a small, now barely-recognisable volcano. The Domain volcano retains its central scoria cone, called Pukekaroa, and the smooth encircling mound from its initial eruption - the tuff ring. The walkway crosses the scoria cone and exits over the tuff ring to sidle past an adjacent scoria cone at Outhwaite Park.

Many rock walls made from the extracts of the old lava flows shape the trail’s approach to Maungawhau (Mt Eden). To see a remnant of the old field and its original forest cover, follow the detour marked on the map. The trail crosses Maungawhau summit, at 196m the highest summit in the isthmus. The summit crater is virtually untouched.

Maungakiekie (One Tree Hill) has three craters, two breached and one intact.

The people

Auckland is one of New Zealand’s most religiously and ethnically diverse regions, with the largest Polynesian population in the world.

With fertile volcanic slopes, access to sheltered fishing sites, strategic command of land routes, and access to sea routes on either coast and to the greatest inland waterway in New Zealand (Aotearoa), the Waikato River is a significant Māori landmark. The Māori name, Tāmaki Makaurau, translates to ‘the spouse desired by a hundred lovers’. As they contended for control of the Isthmus, Māori tribes reshaped the volcanic cones into formidable pā sites.

In 1840, New Zealand’s first Governor, Captain William Hobson, obtained 3000 acres of the Isthmus land from the Ngāti Whātua chiefs, a triangle whose base stretched some 12km along the Waitematā southern shore and whose apex was the summit of Maungawhau (Mt Eden).

Aside from the colonial governors, the best-known early Aucklander was the Scot, John Logan Campbell. An adventurer and one of the first Auckland settlers, he became the city's most prominent businessman and mayor. He gifted Cornwall Park to the people of Auckland, with the park still run by a trust he helped to establish. As the walkway enters the park, it passes a statue of Campbell. His grave, with the Latin inscription 'si monumentum requiris circumspice' - “If you want a memorial, look around you” — is on the summit of Maungakiekie.

Auckland city, including 65 islands in the Hauraki Gulf, is governed by Auckland City Council, which has within its jurisdiction the largest population of any local authority in the country.


Potential hazards

  • Vehicles on road or track Take care crossing roads - use crossings where possible
  • Farming operations Take care around livestock in Cornwall Park

Dogs on leash only in Cornwall Park.


Northern Start: Ferry Terminal, Quay Street, Auckland CBD
Southern End: Onehunga Bay Reserve, Beachcroft Avenue



There is a wide variety of accommodation available throughout this section including Te Araroa preferred hostels in Auckland CBD:

  • Econo Lodge City Central, 37 Wellesley St - P: 09 307 3388
  • Metro Adventurer Backpackers, 51 Hobson St - P: 800 112 128
  • Base Backpackers Auckland, 229 Queen St (entrance on Darby St) - P: 09 358 4877
  • Brown Kiwi Hostel, 7 Prosford St - P: 09 37 0191
  • Frienz Backpackers, 27/31 Victoria St East - P: 09 307 6437 
  • Nomad Auckland Backpackers, 20 Fort Street - P: 09 300 9999
  • Queen Street Backpackers, 4 Fort Street - P: 09 373 3471

Detour to Newmarket Shopping Centre

Includes a range of shops, supermarket, cafes, banks, pharmacies

Detour to Onehunga Shopping Centre

Includes a range of shops, supermarket, cafes, banks, pharmacies


Te Araroa trail section: Follow the once volcanic coast east of Māngere through a variety of terrain. You'll see birds, sewage works and old Māori garden mounds.


From the end of the Coast to Coast Walkway at Onehunga Bay Reserve head southeast through the reserve. Cross the four-lane Hugh Watt Drive on a foot bridge to Orpheus Drive. 

Follow Orpheus Drive east along the Manukau foreshore until opposite the Airport Harbour View Motel.

The path rises to a junction where you turn right (south) onto the new pedestrian bridge, built alongside the abutments of the older Mangere Bridge that was replaced, partially demolished and now rebuilt for pedestrians, cycles and scooters

The piles of the old bridge were founded on a lava crust from nearby Māngere Mountain. Over the years, the bridge footings broke through the crust and sank slightly. Further damage from a ship collision led to its removal.

When the old bridge was closed to foot traffic, a pedestrian underpass was built under the newer motorway bridge a short distance further along the foreshore. That underpass is still there, but is scheduled for removal in December 2022

Once you've crossed the Manukau Harbour on the new pedestrian bridge, head west along Kiwi Esplanade.  

Alternatively continue south another 250 m up to Mangere Bridge village to enjoy a range of cafes, including the highly recommended Hong Kong Bakery.

On Kiwi Esplanade, follow the coastal margin for 3km to Ambury Regional Park. Follow the marked track around the edge of the paddocks near the shore.

You'll see the Ambury Regional Park headquarters, including a ranger’s house, and a fairly basic campground fresh water on tap, toilets and a barbeque. Bookings are essential for this campground. 

Ambury Park Campground

Māngere Foreshore Track - 9km / 2.5 hours

Exit through the kissing gates that mark the Ambury Regional Park’s southwest boundary. Cameron the draughthorse is the main resident on this stretch.

Beyond the kissing gates you’ll see the first signage of the Māngere Foreshore Track, opened in 2005 as part of Watercare’s Manukau foreshore rehabilitation.

2.5km later, you pass the Māngere Lagoon, part of the Auckland volcanic field. In the 1960s, earthworks for the Māngere Sewage Works sludge ponds in the lagoon damaged the scoria cone at the centre of this explosion crater, and the crater itself. 

The sewage works handled Auckland’s waste for 40 years. Its sludge ponds stood on this shore, and its oxidation ponds webbed the sea on the right-hand side of the track all the way out to Puketutu Island.

Walk on 1km and you’ll see version two of the old sewage works, Watercare’s Wastewater Treatment Plant, opened in 2003.

The new plant can process waste in 13 hours by using clarifiers and ultra violet radiation. The old plant used sludge settlement and oxidation, and took 21 days. These days, the sterile solids are trucked away, and the sterile fluids are released on the outgoing tide at the rate of 25 tonnes a second Auckland's biggest river. As Watercare decommissions some of the old treatment systems, they have embarked on a project to rejuvenate the area and nurture the abundant birdlife. The Te Araroa track takes you around one of these areas.

Go past the main Watercare works and offices then turn right (west) next to the canal. Then turn again left (south) past the bird roost and continue past the restored area.

From the car park and toilets at km 616 follow the sign for Ihumatao Quarry Rd exit

Across the Oruarangi Creek pedestrian bridge, a wooden gate lets you onto a nicely gravelled path that leads past a bird hide, and past white-shell beaches. Some low-lying parts of the path may be muddy. The walk features two bird hides, and you'll pass roost islands that host an array of bird species: godwits, lesser knots, wrybills, spoonbills and the distinctive red at-arms slope of the oyster-catchers' bright bills.

By now the Otuataua Stonefields are in sight. Volcanic vents once effervesced here, and Māori moved in later to trap the sun's warmth, piling up these stones and expanding the kūmara-growing season. The Māori garden mounds, the storage pits and the drystone walls of later Pākehā farmers are still prominent in this area. Various paths wind through the old remnants of a previous culture. 

Watercare signage on this section is less than helpful and Te Araroa direction signs are faded and easily missed.  A gps navigation app may be helpful in staying on the correct path through the coastal wetlands.  The sign at km 616.6 is poorly placed. The path straight ahead leads to a view point with information signs explaining local history.  Turn left, away from coast, for the Ihumatao Quarry Rd exit. 

A second Watercare sign at km 617.2 is also unclear. The gravelled path ahead explores the shoreline but is not part of Te Araroa. For the Ihumatao Quarry Rd exit go through, or climb around, the galvanised gate opposite the sign and follow the grass track up the slope parallel to a line of trees.

From the Otuataua Stonefields, exit onto Ihumātao Quarry Road and follow southeast. There is a signposted avocado orchard near the end of the road and walkers are invited to sample a few in season.

Ihumātao Quarry Road has been the scene of political protest in recent years.  There are are some signs of this remaining. There are vehicle road blocks around the intersection of Ihumatao Quarry Road and Oraurangi Road, but Te Araroa walkers are welcome to pass through. Please show respect for local sensitivities. 

Turn right into Oruarangi Road, left (east) into Ihumātao Road for 3kms. Turn right/south into George Bolt Memorial Drive for 1km, and past the Airport Shopping Centre (and the Airport to the south). Turn left (east) into Tom Pearce Drive, and follow it for 1.5 km as it turns south. Turn left/east onto Puhinui Road and follow it for 3km. Turn right into Price Road. Follow Price Road for 1km down to Puhinui Reserve.

Northbound directions for Otuataua Stonefields

From George Bolt Memorial Drive turn left into Imumatao Road for 3 kms.  Turn right (northeast) into Oruarangi Road.  After 0.75 km walk past the road block and turn left into Ihumatao Quarry Road. At the end of the road (1 km) there is signage and a wooden gate.  The route now follows a grass track to the right beside a row of pine trees.  Cross a galvanised gate at the and of the track and turn right (northeast) onto the Watercare Coastal Walkway.  At km 616.6 turn right (east) again and continue another 0.6 km to cross the Oruarangi Creek pedestrian bridge


Track standard: Walking track

  • Vehicles on road or track - take care crossing roads, especially around the airport
  • Farming operations
  • Open drains
  • Track exposed to sun, wind or cold


Northern Start: Onehunga Bay Reserve, Beachcroft Ave
Southern End: Puhinui Reserve, Price Road


Te Araroa trail section: Make your way through Wiri to Auckland Botanic Gardens.


At the end of Price Road continue straight ahead, passing farm buildings, a house on your left and a pond on your right. You’ll see a cattle grid stile across the fence into the reserve. Head across the reserve to a gate in the northeast corner (the row of trees on your left intersects the reserve at that point). Join the gravel path there and continue north alongside Puhinui Stream.

Crossing the footbridge, continue upstream, now on the Puhinui’s true left bank. Leave the stream at Aerovista Place. Turn right out of Aerovista into McLaughlins Road, then left into Vogler Drive to the junction with Roscommon Road. Turn right and follow Roscommon Road until the traffic lights.

Turn left off Roscommon Road into Wiri Station Road. Follow this road about 2.5kms to its junction with Lambie Drive and Druces Road. Diagonally across the intersection, the Puhinui Stream track opens up again. Follow it through to meet up with Kerrs Road.

Follow Kerrs Road east up to Great South Road, turn right down Great South Road for 400m to where the Puhinui Stream goes underneath. Take the pedestrian underpass to the true right-hand bank of the Puhinui Stream and follow this very impressive track (opened 2012) right up and underneath the Southern Motorway into the Auckland Botanic Gardens.

Te Araroa is signposted through the Gardens to Wairere Road, though if interested a short deviation will take you to the Visitor Centre and/or Cafe Miko near the Botanic Garden Entrance.


Potential hazards

  • Vehicles on road or track take care in urban areas
  • Few water sources recommended not to drink from Puhinui Stream

Leave gates as you find them.


Northern Start: Puhinui Reserve, Price Road
Southern End: Totara Park, Wairere Road


  • Bus stops on Hill Rd

  • Auckland Transport - for bus or train information - P: 0800 103080 freephone or 09 366 6400 


Heaven's Rest B&B - 180A Mill Road, Bombay.  0223121462 and email is 

  • One night’s accommodation in one of our rooms or cabins 
  • Pick up and drop off to the Te Araroa Trail 
  • Continental breakfast
  • Free laundry facilities and use of full kitchen
  • $20 discount on any massage treatment*

The price is $119 for 1 person or $129 for 2.

Here is a link to the package

Drury Hills Nest – Drury Hills Road P: 022 692 3054 (Hannah) or 021 566 527 (Jono) E: – Spacious, self-contained detached accommodation, comfy super king bed, heat pump, wifi and a flat-screen TV. Continental breakfast provided. Happy to accommodate up to two kids, too. 

Food and Supply

  • Westfield Mall - Corner Great South and Wiri Station Rds, Manukau. Full range including supermarkets, shops, café, banks and pharmacies available.


Te Araroa trail section: You will walk over Mount William, but this section no longer takes in the Hunua Ranges due to kauri dieback disease and other developments.



Exit the Botanic Gardens into Wairere Road, and follow it to its end. Turn right/southwest into Hill Road and follow that down 300m to a three-way roundabout. Turn left/southeast into Stratford Road, for 600m to a large roundabout intersection.

Previously Te Araroa included part of the Hunua ranges. The trail was damaged by a storm in 2015-16, and devising a suitable detour without encroaching on private land proved difficult. Later concerns around kauri dieback disease resulted in a complete closure of Hunua hiking trails for a time. Te Araroa was adapted to follow an alternative route that used minor roads through Clevedon and Hunua village to reach SH2. The long road walk to Clevedon included some sections considered dangerous. A further modification eliminated the walk to Hunua village and moved the trail closer to the main highway using urban roads.

The bypass starts here for 36.5km in a direct line to return to the trail through urban areas as much as possible for footpaths.

Turn right/southeast into Ranfurly Road. Head along Ranfurly Road for 150m and turn left into Porchester Road. Follow Porchester Road for 5km until it bends left into Ingram Street. Take the first right into Prictor Street, cross the five way junction/roundabout South into Marne Road. Turn right into Settlement Road, cross over the railway then after 650m, turn left into Great South Road. You will pass historic Kirks Bush Scenic Reserve on the right/west. 

NOTE: the next few km follow a new route for 2022 to get around a very large construction site.  Do not try to get through this work site based on 2021 maps. The correct 2022 maps were published on October 5th 2022

Follow Great South Road for 3.7km to the roundabout in Drury, km 651.2.  Turn right (west) into Norrie Road, cross a bridge and then turn right (north) into Creek Street for short distance before turning left into Bremmer Road to cross the motorway.  Immediately after crossing  the motorway resume the southbound direction along Victoria Street.  Cross the Great South Road with care after the motorway ramps and continue down the left (east) side of Great South Road, which bears left after 0.5 km. After another 1 km turn left in Quarry Road to cross back over the motorway.  This is a minor road but it is used by heavy trucks from the quarry.  After 2.3 km turn right (south) into the reconstructed Maketu Road.  Follow the pedestrian path beside the road for 2 km, across a wide bridge, passing Bill Stevenson Road (under construction) on your left. Turn left into Ararimu Road at the roundabout and then right (south) into Hillview Road.

Follow Hillview Road for 4 km and cross Portsmouth Road into Barber Road for 1km.  After passing the school on your right turn right (west) down Paparata Road towards Bombay.  Turn left into Bombay Road and continue onto Razorback Road.  Pass Beaver Road East on your right.  Turn left (east) into Puketutu Road and after 1 km enter the Mt William Walkway for break from road walking.

At the southern end of the Mt William Walkway continue south on McMillan Road for a short distance, then right (south again) onto Irish Road to meet State Highway 2 (SH2). 

Turn left/east along the SH2 for 6km until you cross a bridge over the Mangatāwhiri River. Cross the road on to the stopbank on the southeast side of the river. 

Northbound directions from Hillview Road (km 659) to the Drury roundabout at km 651.2

Included here because the route has changed in early 2021 and the Drury South Crossing construction area requires extra care.

At the northern end of Hillview Road cross Ararimu Road and turn left towards the motorway roundabout. Turn right (north) at the roundabout and follow the pedestrian path beside the road for 2 km, across a wide bridge.  Pass Bill Stevenson Road (under construction) on your right.  Turn left into Quarry Road for 2.3 km, crossing the motorway.  Turn right at Great South Road (km 654) and right again 1 km later. After 0.5 km cross Great South Road with care before the motorway ramps and walk up Victoria Street to the Bremmer Road bridge back across the motorway.  After crossing the bridge turn right (south) into Creek Street for a short distance and then left (east ) into Norrie Road.  Continue to the roundabout and turn left onto Great South Road again.


Potential Hazards

  • Construction traffic around the Drury South Crossing industrial site
  • Farming operations
  • Few water sources


Northern Start: Wairere Road, Totara Park
Southern End: End of McNicol Road, Clevedon


  • Applaud Bed and Breakfast - check it out on - or text Robert on 0274 928 965 - Homestead for a bed and room for tents - plenty of showers and hot water. Free wifi.
  • Heavens Rest B and B - 180a Mill Road, Bombay. We are a small B&B providing rooms and self contained tiny houses in Bombay, just around the corner from the trail. We offer special rates for Te Araroa trampers including pick ups and drop offs. Call or text Robert on 022 23121462 or email on


Te Araroa section: Please note, the forested areas of the Waitākere Ranges Regional Park, and 10 higher-risk tracks in the Hunua Ranges Regional Park, are now closed to protect trees from kauri dieback disease and prevent its spread.

The Ministry for Primary Industries has also issued Controlled Area Notices (CANs) that apply across the whole of the native forested area of the Hunua Ranges regional parkland.


Wairoa River Track — 4km / 1.5-2hr

  • Potential hazards: Forestry operations; small stream crossings

A stile over a fence at the southern end of McNicol Road takes you onto the Wairoa River Track.

The track follows the true right of the Wairoa River, through some pretty stretches of the bush, and is flat through the first 2km before leaving the river to skirt around a gorge section, then climbing to a track intersection.

The track heads steeply downhill and back towards the river at that junction. At the bottom of the hill, it splashes across a small stream draining an interior swamp and enters a small pine plantation. The track is not particularly well marked here, but if you trend right towards the unseen river, you’ll soon break out of the forest.

From there, follow an easy grassed terrace with the Wairoa River in view below.

Continue through an old farm gate, then a final stretch along what was once a bulldozed access road. The boundary of the Hunua Ranges Regional Park is marked by the track going back into the bush. You need to pay attention to the markers here; there’s also one slippery scramble down to and across a stream before ascending on steps up to Cossey Access Road.

Hunua Ranges Track — 30km / 1.5 days

  • Potential hazards: Bikes; Stream crossings; Tracks in the southern part of this track require good tramping/navigation skills; farming operations.

Note: Conservation and farming areas — NO domestic animals allowed (includes dogs, cats or birds)

Enter the Cossey Gorge Track off Cossey Access Road (also called Massey Road) 700m uphill from the Wairoa River Track exit. Walk down the steps to join Massey Track. 

It is a short detour from here to view the Hunua Falls; however, please note camping is not allowed adjacent to the Falls. There are also a few “camps” shown nearby on some maps — note these are private facilities and no accommodation is available for Te Araroa walkers — you’ll need to plan to make it through to the small campsite on Repeater Road or the Upper Mangatāwhiri campsite a bit further on.

Follow the Massey Track southeast 3.5km to join with the Wairoa-Cosseys Track, a 6.5km tramp with views across the Wairoa Reservoir, around to the dam itself, where there’s a picnic ground. Take the Wairoa Loop Track from here to Repeater Road. About 1km along this road, at the junction with the Challenge MTB Track, there’s a campsite with a basic shelter, rainwater, and a composting toilet. If you’re not stopping, stay on Repeater Road, just over 1.5km to its junction with Moumoukai Road. There’s a parking area and a locked gate – usually left open. This section of the park network is set aside for cycling, but there’s plenty of room.

Turn sharp left (northeast) down Moumoukai Road 2.5km to the junction with Mangatangi Hill Road. 

If you want to camp at this point, continue straight ahead (north) another 400 metres to the Upper Mangatāwhiri camping area with flush toilets and water (water needs to be boiled for 3 minutes).

To continue the through route, turn right (southeast) at the Moumoukai Rd / Mangatangi Hill Road junction and follow along another 2km to the intersection with Manning Road. Follow Manning Road for 1.5km to the turnoff to Moumoukai Valley Road on the right (south). This road has an old ford across the Milne Stream that’s been washed out and never replaced, so you have to walk across the stream to find the road again. Follow Moumoukai Valley Road 2.5km to the Lower Mangatāwhiri Campsite. 

From the campsite, the Lower Mangatāwhiri Track crosses the Mangatāwhiri River. The track heads in the bush up to Peak 445 and continues along the ridge past Peak 234 to a spur above the Mangatāwhiri River. It then descends sharply down to the river.

The largely-bush section from the Lower Mangatāwhiri Campsite is just over 6km, and you need good tramping skills. It’s marked but not otherwise formed, and you should be careful to follow the orange triangles as other tracks intersect it en route.

The track descends off the last steep ridge to a new swing bridge crossing the Mangatāwhiri (here, the river is further from its headwater, so it rises swiftly after rain). The route then goes straight ahead, along the inside of the farm fenceline (there’s DOC land above the farm) until it crosses Mallingtons Farm, along the side of a stream out to Lyons Road.

Please use the boot cleaning station as you exit to help protect against the spread of kauri dieback disease.


Potential hazards:

  • Bikes
  • Stream crossings
  • Tracks in the southern part of this track require good tramping/navigation skills
  • Farming/Forestry operations

No domestic animals allowed (includes dogs, cats or birds)


Te Araroa section: Follow the Mangatāwhiri River past Dutch-style polders to connect with historic Mercer, where the first invasion of the Waikato took place. Finish on the banks of the Waikato River.


Follow SH2 east for 5.5 km keeping well off the road shoulder as this is an extremely busy road with a lot of traffic. Look for the sign for the turnoff to Mangatāwhiri, Miranda and Kaiau. Immediately after crossing a bridge, look to your left for a signboard for the Mangatāwhiri Track.

Head down the side of SH2 (no need to cross it) and cross a stile to take you under the bridge and onto the stopbank route, heading south.

Mangatawhiri River Track — 6.5km / 2 hours

This track opens up a little-seen corner of New Zealand where you’ll overlook the stopbank, a Dutch Polder-style agriculture. It follows the Mangatāwhiri River from the SH2 bridge southwest to the exit at McIntyre Road.

Caution: SH2 is a fast highway. It is safest to drive across the bridge and pull off the highway onto Mangatāwhiri Road, then make your way back on foot below the road bridge. 

Follow the stopbank, which is on the true left of the Mangatāwhiri River – that is, the left bank as you face downstream. One low-lying area about halfway along may flood, but only after heavy rains. After a 5km walk down the stopbank, you’ll come to a drainage ditch about 10m wide. At this point, the stopbank and the track route turn a right angle and follow the drainage ditch inland for about 1km before finishing at the McIntyre Road end, and a pump station is there for an Archimedes Screw, which is part of the drainage.

If you want to see what this land was like before being modified, look across the drainage ditch, and you’ll see the natural swamp run by the Auckland/Waikato Chapter of Fish and Game. 

Mercer — 4.5km / 1.5 hours

McIntyre Road is a little-used road serving only a few houses. It has views across the Fish and Game swampland and a relaxing shady section before it reaches the junction with Kellyville Road. 

  • Note: After heavy rain and when the river is running high, this route may be underwater — check conditions carefully, and if the water is high, use the Koheroa Bypass as an alternative.

After crossing the railway line, follow the markers into the trees opposite and under the Southern Motorway bridge. 

Turn left/south and follow the marked route parallel to the motorway 1.5km to the Mercer Service Centre — where a petrol station, cafe and food court are available for refreshments before you leave the Auckland region and enter Waikato.


Potential hazards

  • Vehicles on road or track
  • Farming operations Occasionally farm animals. Also temporary electric fences (can be stepped over).
  • Open drains
  • Track exposed to sun, wind or cold
  • Few water sources

 No dogs allowed


Northern Start: End of Lyons Rd, Mangatawhiri
Southern End: Skeet Rd, Mercer


The Auckland region conveniently ends at the Mercer Service Centre, SH 1, Mercer.

It is well serviced by long haul bus companies such as: 


  • Mercer Motel - 2 Roose Rd, Mercer - P: 09 233 6555 - E:  Has motel units for $100 per night, there are also cabins for $50 pp and camping is $12 per night for one person and $20 for two people.  

Food and Supply

  • Adjacent to the Mercer Motel is a tavern called Podge's Place with meals and refreshments. Podge's Place is currently being refurbished. Casual camping  is no longer available at the tavern
Page last updated: Feb 11, 2022, 2:20 PM