Walks & Parks

  • Pukekura Park, New Plymouth

    Wander through this inner-city botanical wonderland to discover lakes, a zoo, historic tea house, playground and countless short walks, as well as a Fernery and Display Houses and a Japanese-inspired hillside.

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    • Location: Fillis Street, New Plymouth
  • Whinray Scenic Reserve

    There a couple different options to custom fit this trail to your time frame. Either a 30 minute walk from the car park on Motu Falls Road or a 2.5 hour walk from Marumoko Road to the Motu Falls Car Park.

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    • Location: Motu 4092
  • Mount Taranaki Walks

    A must-visit of the region is the Egmont National Park and there are plenty of short walks around the foothills or sides of Mt Taranaki (also known as Mt Egmont). During summer you can also tackle the all-day hike to the summit (very strenuous, 8-10 hours return, 2518m).
    The two 'starting off' points for day hikes are North Egmont Visitor Centre, nearest village Egmont Village, or Dawson Falls Visitor Centre on the southern side, nearest town, Stratford.
    From here you can choose a walk or hike to suit your family's ability and fitness, from just a few minutes to 10 hours (Mt Taranaki summit climb). Some of the 3-4 hour walks are long enough to get you up high on the mountain with amazing views of the summit and right across flat farmland to the sea. They are short enough to be do-able for reasonably fit families. There are also overnight huts on the mountain and the most famous multi-day tramp is the Around the Mountain Circuit (4-5 dayas)

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    • Location: Mt Taranaki National Park, nr New Plymouth
  • Best Beaches :: Taranaki

    Round up the family and head to one of the region's superb beaches! Great choices include Back Beach, Centennial Drive, East End Beach, Nobs Line, Fitzroy Beach, Beach St, Ngamotu Beach, Ocean View Parade, Oakura Beach, Jans Terrace, Oakura. East End, Fitzroy and Oakura are the only beaches in New Zealand to be awarded the Blue Flag eco-label for their environmental, education and safety status.

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  • The Coastal Walkway, New Plymouth

    This is an excellent, completely flat walkway that is also perfect for family bike rides. You can start the walk from the middle of New Plymouth, just in front of the iSite, and head alongside the Tasman Sea towards Bells Block. You will pass the famous, 45 metre Wind Wand sculpture along with a number of interesting stone carvings, before passing the popular surf beaches of Fitzroy and East End. There are plenty of good picnic spots and a playground enroute, before you arrive at the must-see Te Rewa Rewa Bridge. From the town centre, if you head in the other direction - west, the walkway winds past the Todd Energy Aquatic Centre, Kawaroa Park and playground then heads to the marina at the port and Ngamotu Beach - a safe swimming beach for the family.

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    • Location: New Plymouth, Taranaki
  • Barrett Domain and Lake Mangamahoe, New Plymouth

    A good venue for a family day out - pack a picnic and hang out on the shores of Lake Mangamahoe. There are lots of walking and easy mountain bike tracks. It takes about 2 hours to walk the round the lake circuit, and there are some undulating sections so reasonable fitness is required. There are other walks that take 10-20 minutes, and a section of dedicated mountain bike trails.

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    • Location: nr Egmont Village, New Plymouth
  • Bason Botanic Gardens - Whanganui

    Bason Botanic Garden is rated a “Garden of Significance” by the New Zealand Gardens Trust. It includes one of the most extensive public garden orchid collections in New Zealand. Families enjoy their time here making use of the wide open spaces and free gas BBQ facilities.

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    • Location: 552 Rapanui Rd,
      Westmere 4574
  • The Esplanade Picnic Area - Queenstown

    A favourite spot, only minutes from the town centre. There’s lots of space as the picnic area runs alongside the lake for about 1km. Close to playground and toilets.

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    • Location: Queenstown - The Esplanade
  • Hawkes Bay - Pourerere Beach

    Ideal for fishing, swimming and surfing, Pouerere Beach has a camping ground and freedom camping areas. The safe swimming beach has golden sand and dolphins and seals are sometimes seen in the bay. There are toilets and changing rooms on the right side of Pouerere Road.

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  • Diamond Lake - Rocky Mountain Walking Track - Wanaka

    The track is a figure 8 shape. For a shorter walk take the return track to the Lake Wanaka viewpoint. The entire track takes around 3 hours return but the views from the summit are stunning. Note: the track’s steep and uneven in parts – not suited to poor weather conditions.

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    • Location: Wanaka - 25 mins drive west of Wanaka, along the Mount Aspiring Road.
  • Taupo -Tokaanu Thermal Area

    Just five minutes from Turangi is the village of Tokaanu. A short walk around the loop track on well formed paths and boardwalks allows you to see steaming hot mineral pools and bubbling mud pools. Take a picnic with you as there are areas for picnics and fishing. You can swim in the nearby Tokaanu Thermal pools at Mangaroa Street and there are often rainbow trout swimming in the cold Tokaanu stream which flows beside the thermal area. As with all thermal area, children should be supervised at all times.

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    • Location: Tokaanu Thermal Area, SH41, Lake Taupo
  • Hahei Beach - Whitianga

    This attractive, white sandy beach with pohutukawas is one and a half kilometres long. The crystal clear water is home to crayfish and fish. At the eastern end of the beach is the site of an old Maori Pa. From the lookout there is access to Cathedral Cove and the marine reserve. There are cafes, a beach store, ice cream parlour and gift shop nearby.

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    • Location: Hahei, South of Whitianga