Picnic Spots and Walks

The Hillary Trail


Some of the ancient kauris on The Hillary Trail

Connects a network of existing regional park tracks and basic backpacker campgrounds . It can be experienced over a few days depending on fitness level - camping along the way or hiking for a few hours with pick up arranged by yourself. For maps and further information phone 09 366 2000 or visit the Arataki Visitor Centre on Scenic Drive, Auckland West (between Titirangi Village & the Piha Road turnoff) 35 minutes from Auckland City

Cornwallis Beach


Cornwallis Beach in summer

A magical location for romantic occasions family picnics and barbeques in the Waitakeres. A pohutakawa lined cream sandy beach. From Titirangi, travel down Huia Rd for 15 kilometers and turn left at Pine Avenue or take the next left, Cornwallis Wharf Rd. About 40 minutres from Auckland City. About 10 minutes from Titirangi Village.

Piha Beach


The black sands of Piha Beach

Dramatic coastal location with black iron sand and pounding surf. Watch stunning sunsets over the Tasman Sea or walk along meandering streams, through rainforest hiking trails to exotic waterfalls. A popular destination for surfers and visitors. Take Piha Road (off Scenic Drive near the ‘Elevation Cafe’). About 25 minutes from Titirangi Village and an hour from Auckland city.

Karekare Beach and Waterfall


Karekare waterfall - a popular wedding photo location

Popular location where rugged rainforest meets the dramatic black sand surf coast. Famous location of the triple Oscar award-winning movie The Piano. The stunning waterfall is a short walk from the beach Follow sign on Piha Road (before Piha Beach). About 50 minutes from Auckland City.

Bethells Beach (Te Henga)


Wedding at Bethells Beach

The wild and wonderful Te Henga - Bethells Beach is a typical west coast, black sand beauty and makes for a spectacular escape. The surf patrol means you can swim in summer. Remember to stay between the flags. About 50 minutes from Auckland City. Click on the ‘map’ link on the index for more location info. The beach cafe is open on weekend daylight hours during warmer months. Te Henga walk between Muriwai and Bethells Beach is considered by DOC as one of the 12 most beautiful in NZ

O’Neills Beach (beside Bethells Beach)


west auckland o'neill bay

O’Neills Beach

Continue over the hill to another part of Te Henga (Bethells Beach) Take an umbrella to shelter from the sun as there is no shade or drinking water.

Lake Wainamu - Te Henga (Bethells Beach)


Lake Wainamu - situated behind the huge dunes at Bethells

Take Te Henga Rd at Scenic Drive Swanson then veer left into Bethells Road. Park just after the single lane bridge (10 minutes drive) at the small carpark beside the sign posted track entrance, Be prepared for a refreshing walk in the Waiti Stream (20 mins) which leads to the lake- the shortcut over the black sand dunes is very hot in summer.Great for the kids to slide down but not easy to find a comfortable spot as the sand dunes are steep. Fun day out with the kids. Take a sled or cardboard box - but remember to take it home again. Movie location for TV Series - Xena.

Karamatura Stream - Huia


Crossing the Karamatura Stream

Great picnic spot and bushwalk. From Titirangi Village continue on Huia Road past Kaitarakihi and Little Huia.. Drive over causeway and veer left. Sign will show the way. Hiking trails from beside the carpark. Can be muddy in the rainy season. Wear sensible shoes! About 50 minutes from Auckland City. Click on the map link on the index for more location information. Snacks coffee and icecream at the Huia Store.

Mokoroa Falls - Goldies Bush Muriwai


Goldies Bush

Beautiful waterfall accessed via Muriwai Road - turn left off Highway 16 at Waimauku (Helensville Highway) 40 mins from Auckland City. Then approx 8 kms to Oaia Rd then 3.5 kms to Constable Rd. Track at left of sign. Visitors Information at Kumeu has maps. Hiking trail suitable for relatively fit. Walking shoes required. Take refreshments. About an hour from Auckland City. Then an hours walk to the falls.

Nine Pin Rock Whatipu


Ninepin Rock on the rugged west coast

Whatipu is where the Manukau Harbour meets the Tasman Sea. Follow Huia Road to the end and follow signs to this remote sanctuary about an hour from Auckland City. Click on the ‘map’ link on the index for more location info.

French Bay


French Bay

Lovely little Pohutukawa lined bayside beach - popular in summer for canoes, sailboats and picnics. Drive up Titirangi Road and just after Godley Road (on left) and before reaching Titirangi Village turn left into Park Road then first left down Otitori Bay Road down to French Bay (also visit Colin McCahon House). Or - from the village turn left at Lopdell House, then first left into Park Road, then second left down Otitori Bay Road to French Bay. 30 minutes from Auckland city central.

Zig Zag Track to Titirangi Beach


Titirangi Beach Kauris

Cnr. Park Road and Titirangi Beach Road (opposite The Ferns) Park your car at the top of track that winds down through rainforest to Titirangi beach and children’s playground. To avoid the hike back up the steep track continue along the beach front past the hall and go up the Bill Haresnape track to Tanekaha Road. Turn left and then left into Otitoria Bay Road back up to Park Road. Go left again and opposite the Zig Zag track entrance is another trail to Titirangi Village.. Approx 1. 1/2 hrs.

KiteKite Waterfall Track (Piha)


View of the waterfall from the KiteKite track

At the end of Piha Road (before the gallery) turn right into Glenesk Road and drive to the end. There is usually of parking through carpark entrance on r.h.s. Follow track beside a winding pebbled stream through exotic rainforest tree ferns, nikau palms and kauris to the watefall and swimming hole. Approximately 25 minute walk each way. Picnic tables also on other side of the stream. Cross over the bridge at the beginning of the track. One hour approximately from Auckland City. 30 minutes from Titirangi Village. Hike to waterfall approx 20 minutes

KiteKite Waterfall


KiteKite waterfall

At the end of the track (see above) this stunning waterfall and waterhole offer a refreshing rest stop after a thirty minute walk from the Glenesk Road carpark along the kitekite stream. In summer the waterhole is a great place to have a dip with adjacent rocks to dry off or picnic on. A popular weekend spot for visitors or a day out with the family.. There is a track on the opposite side of the waterhole for a different walk to return on and a bridge at the end to cross over the stream and back to the carpark on Glenesk Road.



Kaitarakihi Beach - a popular swimming destination

A short distance down a winding, unsealed road bordered by lush tree ferns to this hidden treasure. A secluded, sandy beach and grassy picnic area surrounded only by sub-tropical trees and pristine water. From Titirangi, travel down Huia Rd for 15 kilometers past the Cornwallis & Kakamatua exits and turn next left at the Kaitarakihi Beach sign. About 15 minutes from Titirangi Village. Go to the ‘maps’ link on the index to find this idyllic harbouside location. Approximately 45 minutes from Auckland Central

Omanawanui Track - Whatipu


View of Whatipu Beach and wetlands from the top of the hill

The track runs along the cliff tops above the Manukau harbour (from east to west). Park at the main Whatipu carpark and take the main track to the beach - very soon after leaving the carpark you cross a small stream (bridged) and the track forks right (to the beach) and left (up the hill). It’s a marked, maintained DOC track - at the top there’s even a big park bench to sit and admire the awesome 360 degree views.

Fairy Falls


Native bush on the Fairy Falls walk

Walk from the top of Scenic Drive (between Piha Rd and Mountain Road ) down down down into the lush rainforest valley. More spectacular after a lot of rain. An excellent workout for energetic adults and children.

Mercer Bay Loop Walk - Piha


The Mercer Bay Walk descends down these steep cliffs into the bay 

This track provides stunning views along the coast in both directions from Piha to KareKare and a great spot to watch the sunset. The round trip takes about one hour. Turn left off Piha Road into Te Ahuahu Road (1.2km after the Karekare turnoff), which becomes Log Race Road to a carpark at the end. Recommend good walking shoes being a little muddy on left side track during winter and signage a little confusing. Some side tracks go to lookout points or behond the loop trail.

Cascades Walk and Falls


One of the ancient Cascades Kauri - over 2000 years old

The falls are not so spectacular and difficult to see much without clambering over rocks but the walk along the Cascades Stream is enjoyable and easy to do - about 30 minutes. Off Scenic Drive go to Bethells Road and take the Falls Road turnoff to the Waitakere Golf Club. Included in the Auckland City Walk - about one hour.

Montana Heritage Trail


The Waitakere Dam at the top of the Montana Heritage Trail

A four hour trek through the Cascades Kauri trail. Recommended as a good ‘winter’ walk being better maintained than others. This circular tramp starts from Falls Road carpark then follows Auckland City Walk, Upper Kauri, Long Road, Fence Line and Auckland City Walk again back to carpark. Uphill for the first 15 minutes from Waitakere Golf Club entrance. Drive past the clubhouse to parking for walks. Toilet facilities and maps available.

Mt Atkinson - Titirangi


Amazing sunset from the summit of Mt Atkinson

From Titirangi village at the roundabout go into Kohu Road (3rd exit ). Travel up first road on the left to the top walking (track at the base) Beautiful hilltop view to the city over West Auckland and also to the Manukau Harbour.

mercer bay