Category Archives: Walks in Auckland East

Auckland meets the sea to the east. Here the walks take you to see harbour and estuary views, farmland, beaches, wetland and native bird-life and native trees.

Maraetai Loop Walk

The Maraetai Loop Walk lives up to our criteria for a route that is diverse and interesting.  It starts by the boat ramp on the western side of Maraetai Reserve, and follows a rough track beside a stream through the lush bush of Dr. Adah Platts-Mills Reserve (which we suggest may be muddy in winter) before emerging into residential streets. Then it’s down hill to the Omana Regional Park, past the goats (Dixie and Pixie) and then follows the waters edge back to the start.

The views over the Gulf are magnificent – you can see over to Waiheke Island, and of course Rangitoto. And the bird song within the bush was beautiful. Today we came across a talkative and friendly fantail.
Maraetai Loop Walk in Auckland

On a summers day, you may wish to pack your togs and a picnic. There is an off leash dog exercise area along the perimeter of the Omana Regional Park. Public toilets and a playground enroute. Cafes along Maraetai Coast Road.

Description: Mostly level paths with one incline. Suitable for most ages and levels of fitness and mobility, designed with flat shoes or running shoes in mind. Muddy in bush in winter.
To see: Native bush and birds, coastal views.
Time: approx. 90 minutes (about 7.5 kms). Children’s playgrounds, Dog off leash exercise area. Safe swimming.
Start: Maraetai Park, off Maraetai Drive. Map

Stay on track…get your detailed guide and map brochure  (AE-112 Maraetai Loop Walk) over at our Walks Store

 

Best walks in Auckland

We don’t really think that there are any best walks in Auckland – they all are great. But to fit each area of Auckland into a handy size book, we did have to choose some of our favourite short walks to share with you, as we could not include them all.

As with all our books, these ones include maps, directions, colour photos plus other bits of information (places of interest, playgrounds, dog off leash exercise areas, cafes, picnic sites).  They will help guide you/and your friends and family, as you discover the hidden gems of Auckland.

These “Best walks in Auckland” books will become available from Amazon and your local Auckland library.

Best of the West - Short Walks in AucklandWe started with “Best of the West“…
 In this edition, we take you on twelve circular short walks that have been selected to give you a good sampling of the diversity of urban West Auckland. Our walks take you from Blockhouse Bay to Henderson, from bush to coast, through reserves and alongside streams, alongside the southern Manukau Harbour and the northern Waitemata Harbour. Available from CreateSpace and Amazon.

Best of the East: Short Walks in Auckland Then we head over to “Best of the East“…
These thirteen urban walks have been chosen to showcase the beauty of East Auckland. Our walks take you from Orakei to Botany; you can enjoy the stunning views of the Waitemata Harbour, the lush native bush, volcano sites and the waterways.
Available from CreateSpace and Amazon

 

 

Best of the South: Short walks in AucklandAnd then onto “Best of the South”.
These twelve urban walks have been chosen to showcase the beauty of South Auckland.  We guide you on walks from Mangere Bridge to Papakura. You can enjoy the stunning views of Manukau Harbour, the lush native bush, ancient volcano sites and the secret waterways that make South Auckland unique.
Available from CreateSpace

Botany to Cascades Loop Walk

It continues to amaze us how the distances between places seem shorter when we are out walking compared to driving. This loop walk in Auckland from Botany Town Centre and back via Cascades Road, was one  that took us from an unfamiliar area to an area we have walked previously. When we start exploring a new area, we are never sure what we are going to find, and we found today’s walk very pleasant.

We made good use of reserve walkways and the suburban streets.  And we had three delightful surprises.

Our first surprise was finding a book –  a travelling book (from BookCrossing) left by someone to be picked up, read and released!

The second surprise was stumbling upon an old farm cottage which has been converted into a cafe that is surrounded by modern suburban housing. The grounds contain a tree that was planted in 1890. A hidden gem with a rural feel right in the middle of an urban wasteland with heaps of character and charm – Hawthorn Dene Historic Country Cafe.

Botany to Cascades Loop Walk Copyright 2014 Unleashed ventures LimitedThe third surprise was an amazing and wonderful wood carving which you would not know was there if you were travelling by car.

 
The walking route is also great for cyclists, prams/buggies and dog walkers . Dogs- Off leash exercise areas within reserves and parks.

Description: Mostly level paths. Suitable for most ages and levels of fitness and mobility, designed with flat shoes or running shoes in mind. Suitable for pushchairs.
To see: Historical sites, bridges, waterways.
Time: approx. 75 minutes (about 7kms).
Start:The Hub, Ti Rakau Drive, Botany. MAP

Stay on track…find this walk’s map and directions guide (AE-100 Botany to Cascades Loop) and other walk self-guides at our Walk Store and our Book Store (“Best of the East”).

Mangemangeroa Valley Walkway

Today we headed south along the Mangemangeroa Valley Walkway – previously we had walked north to Shelly Park Beach.  Today started off overcast but the sun came out, and there was a cool breeze.  The breeze was very welcome when we were walking uphill in Hayley Lane and at the end of the Rotary Loop.

Mangemangeroa Valley Walkway © 2011-2014 Unleashed Ventures Limited All Rights Reserved

We started off at the barn in Somerville Road (MAP) and turned right.  It was good to see new maps and direction posts have been erected since our last visit, one year ago.  A lot of work has also been done with the planting of flax and cabbage trees – where this is done it will be a joy to see the rejuvenation of the native bush. We were pleased to see young kauri trees growing strongly. We walked up the steep hill of Hayley Lane, along Point View Drive, then back down the steep steps to rejoin the path, then followed the next turn left up the steps of the Rotary Loop to return to the start – a length of just over 5kms.

This walkway is very pleasant and perfect for a day walk and picnic, if doing the full length. Get the Auckland Council brochure here.

We drove onto Whitford for refreshments beside the Turanga River at Amy’s Kitchen.

Half Moon Bay East

This walk at Half Moon Bay explores the parks and reserves to the east, and then heads down to Eastern Beach. On a sunny day at high tide it is quite beautiful! The new-ish boardwalk, is a great finishing touch as you return to Half Moon Bay.
Half Moon Bay marina - ©2013 walksinauckland.com

It was very busy at the Half Moon Bay cafes today – with many people out making the most of the sunny, warm weather and Mothers Day.

 

Description: Mainly level paths, steep steps and steep slopes. Suitable for users of average fitness and mobility.
To see: Views of Tamaki Estuary, marina, Eastern Beach Esplanade; views of Rangitoto, Mount Wellington and One Tree Hill
Time: approx. 75 minutes. (about 6.0 kms)
Start from: Half Moon Bay Marina  MAP

Stay on track…get your detailed guide and map (AE-072 Half Moon Bay East) over at our Walks Store  and our Book Store (one of 12 walks featured in our books “Coastal part 2” and “Best of the East”).

Half Moon Bay West

Half Moon Bay. Copyright 2013 Unleashed Ventures LimitedHalf Moon Bay was bathed in sunshine this morning – very welcome after a week of rain.  The walk west follows the cliff tops with fantastic views of Point England Reserve, Tahuna Torea, Rangitoto and Mount Wellington.

It’s been a while since we had visited Half Moon Bay; the last time there was a lot of building work going on.

We were prompted by Brett to return – this is his suggestion “A great one to commute to by ferry, go for a walk & check out the cafes, restaurants & bar at Half Moon Bay Marina, even a supermarket now at the marina. Best kept secret, free push bikes available from Grangers Restaurant & Bar!” Thanks for the tip, Brett!

Description: Mainly level paths, some steps and steep slopes. Suitable for users of average fitness and mobility.
To see:Views of Tamaki Estuary, Point England Reserve, Tahuna Torea, Rangitoto, Mt Wellington.  Wetlands, Pukeko birds habitat.
Time:approx. 60 minutes. (about 4.7 kms)
Start from: Half Moon Bay Marina off Ara-Tai Road MAP

Stay on track…find this walk’s map and directions guide (AE-070 Half Moon Bay west) and other walk self-guides at our Walk Store

Check it out: the Half Moon Bay ferry service

Pakuranga Farm Cove Loop

We have now added a fourth loop walk taking in the wonderful Pakuranga Rotary walkway. This 5kms loop walk follows the Tamaki Estuary through Farm Cove and explores the Sunny Hills suburban streets, with views of Mount Wellington and One Tree Hill.

You may wish to cycle the whole 5 kms of the Pakuranga Rotary walkway, or just stop and watch the tide on one of the many seats along the walkway.  Families may like to take a fun break on the snakes and ladders playground near the Bramley Drive entrance.

The walking route is also great for prams/buggies and dog walkers (on leash only).

Mon Bichon Cafe We stopped for coffee at the French inspired deli/cafe Mon Bichon, a delightful surprise in the Farm Cove village shops. You could buy your pastries from here to take and eat beside the walkway…(update: sadly it is no longer there).

Description: Mainly level paths (with one small incline).  Suitable for users of average fitness and mobility. Suitable for cycling and push-chairs.
To see: Tamaki Estuary, Mangroves, white volcanic pumice deposits, views of Mount Wellington and One Tree Hill, residential homes
Time: approx. 60 minutes. (about 5 kms)
Start: Fisher Parade, Farm Cove Village  MAP

Stay on track…find this walk’s map and directions guide (AE-068 Pakuranga Farm Cove Loop) and other walk self-guides at our Walk Store and our Book Store (“Best of the East”)

Pakuranga Kentigern Loop

© 2013 Unleashed Ventures LimitedToday we set out to explore another part of the Pakuranga Rotary Walkway, this time taking a loop behind Saint Kentigern College and through Manor Park.

This mainly flat 4km walk would suit workers at Pakuranga Plaza as well as residents. Views of Mount Wellington and water craft. Great for cyclists (cycle the full length of the walkway to Pigeon Mountain) and dog walkers (on leash – please refer to comments below), and for prams/buggies .

The day was calm and the skies blue – perfect for a walk!

Description: Mainly level paths. Suitable for users of average fitness and mobility.
To see:  Views of Mount Wellington, water craft, residential homes
Time: approx. 45 minutes. (about 4.0 kms)
Start: Pakuranga Plaza MAP

Stay on track…find this walk’s map and directions guide (AE-066 Pakuranga Kentigern Loop) and other walk self-guides at our Walk Store

(Click on photos to enlarge)

Apirana St Johns Loop

This walk makes use of the reserves within walking distance of Glen Innes Train Station. We visit the horse paddocks of Apirana Reserve with views of Mount Wellington, Eastern Beach and on a clear day, the Coromandel (this is part of the 7.5km  Point to Point Walkway) and then walk through the native bush within St Johns Bush.

Apirana Reserve is part of the Point to Point Walkway
Apirana Reserve is part of the Point to Point Walkway

St Johns Bush is a green corridor for birds flying across Auckland.  There is a wetland area with native fish.  This area is home to over 165 different species of plants.  The kauri tree is over 150 years old.

Joining up reserves to minimise street walking is a challenge, but we are very fortunate to have so many green spaces in Auckland. Our dream is that some time in the future, the reserves will be linked together to help us commute safely by bicycle or on foot (and hopefully wheelchairs), from one area to another, minimising road use.

Dogs- off leash exercise area in Merton Reserve.

Description: A mix of level and hilly paths. Suitable for users of average fitness and mobility.
To see: St Johns Bush native trees and ferns, residential housing, reserves, horse paddocks,views of Eastern Beach and the Coromandel, city skyline view
Time: approx. 60 minutes. (about 4.5 kms)
Start: Glen Innes Train Station  MAP

Stay on track…get your detailed guide and map over at our Walks Store  (AE-061 Apirana Saint Johns Loop) and our Book Store (one of 12 walks featured in our books “Dog Friendly Walks part 3” and “Best of the East”).

University of Auckland Walks – Tamaki Campus

Stage Four of the University of Auckland short walks project, with five walking circuits starting and ending from the Tamaki campus in Morrin Road.

If you would like free copies of these PDF brochures, please leave your request in the comment box below.

Stay on track…get other detailed guides with maps from our Walks Store

Maybury ReservePoint England Loop
This walk takes you through Glen Innes and Maybury Reserve (and its rows of feijoa trees) to the edge of Point England Reserve returning through a character-filled Glen Innes residential street.
Time: approx. 40 minutes. (about 3.75 kms)

Maungarei Springs Wetlands Stonefields Loop
This walk winds through Stonefields to Maungarei Springs Wetlands.
Time: approx. 40 minutes. (about 3.6 kms)

 

Apirana Reserve and view of Mount WellingtonApirana Reserve Loop
This walk takes you off the suburban streets into the countryside and horse paddocks, with views from the top of the hill of Eastern Beach and the Coromandel on a clear day, and Mount Wellington close by.
Time: approx. 45 minutes. (about 4.2 kms)

 

Eastview Reserve, Glen innes Eastview Reserve Loop
Refresh and revive amongst the trees in Taniwha and Eastview (mature oak trees) Reserves.
Time: approx. 45 minutes. (about 4.0 kms)

 

Stonefields, St JohnsThe Goldsbury Track Loops
Take in a Reserve before winding through Stonefields to the Gollan Road Pedestrian Trail. Snatch views of Mt Wellington, Mt Eden, Mt St John, Mt Hobson, One Tree Hill and the top of the Sky Tower.
Time: approx. 45 minutes. (about 4.19 kms)

Point England Walk

Point England ReserveWe are not familiar with the Tamaki and Glen Innes area, so today was our first walk and explore. And we discovered beautiful Point England Reserve.  What a gem! We had no idea that there was a sandy beach here.

This walk offers great views of East Auckland and the Waitemata harbour and as the walkway passes through bush, mangroves and farmland. This route is a part of the 7.5km  Point to Point Walkway.

The walking route is also great for prams/buggies and dog walkers (on leash only).

The lack of rainfall has made the Omaru River smelly, so we do hope that will improve when it next rains.  Part of the path is in great need of maintenance.  We wonder if the local schools could adopt part of the walkway and learn how to maintain and enhance the bush and stream??? (The Omaru River is an outlet of Orakei Basin and runs underneath Meadowbank to Apirana Ave, through Maybury Reserve and out to Wai O Taiki Bay).
Update: a project was kicked off in June 2013. Read: Youth keen to save river

Description: Mostly level paths. Suitable for users of average fitness and mobility. (Take bread to feed the ducks)
To see: Estuary views, boats, wetlands, mangroves, residential housing, view of two volcanoes – Mt Wellington and One Tree Hill, Point England Reserve, Maybury Reserve feijoa trees
Time approx. 80 minutes. (about 7.0 kms)
Start: Glen Innes Train Station (or Point England Road Reserve at end of Point England Road)  MAP
Nearby Walks: Tahuna Torea, Waiaturua Reserve

Stay on track…get your detailed guide and map over at our Walks Store  (AE-059 Point England Walk) and our Book Store (one of 12 walks featured in our books “Coastal part 2” and “Best of the East”).

Pakuranga Loop walk

Part of our Pakuranga Loop Walk is along the  Pakuranga Rotary Walkway which currently extends to Pigeon Mountain, along the Tamaki Estuary and Whakaaranga Creek. 

Pakuranga walkway

It is a safe cycling, jogging and walking route. The walkway is paved and relatively flat, making it suitable for wheelchairs, pushchairs and a range of fitness levels. The walkway along the estuary is safe for family cycling.

dog off leash sign - CopyThe walking route is also great for prams/buggies and dog walkers (on leash). There is an off leash dog exercise area
along the Pakuranga Rotary Walkway between the Panmure Bridge and Waakaranga Reserve which permits dogs off-leash under the owners control. This is a huge off leash walk but most people do not know about. This sign can be found at the entrance to the walkway at Kerswill Place. See Auckland Council dog rules.

These flat river plains were used to grow oats, hay and wheat up until the 1950’s.   Pakuranga was then known as “the granary of Auckland”.

This walk section looks into the mouth of the Panmure Lagoon from the opposite bank.

Description: A mix of level paths and slightly inclined paths. Suitable for users of average fitness and mobility.
To see:  Estuary views, boats, wetlands, residential housing,  Mt Wellington, Pakuranga Mall
Time: approx. 40 minutes. (about 3.75 kms)
Start: Pakuranga Mall  Map

Stay on track…find this walk’s map and directions guide (AE-057 Pakuranga Loop) and other walk self-guides at our Walk Store

Click on the photos below to view in full screen.

 

 

 

Mission Bay to Okahu Bay Loop

The loop walk in Auckland from Mission Bay to Okahu Bay takes in the views of Auckland Harbour from the M J Savage Memorial Park (the Auckland Explorer Bus stops here) and the Bastion Point Marae.  The bright sunshine and blue skies today, enhanced the scenes.

Mission Bay Auckland NZMission Bay is a great little seaside village that always seems to have a buzz with it’s cafes, restaurants, harbour promenade, famous fountain and sandy beach.

Okahu Bay has a sandy beach and on the other side of Tamaki Drive is the Orakei Domain.  The Domain has an extensive children’s playground that includes a flying fox.

You may wish to linger at the Michael Joseph Savage (first Labour Prime Minister of New Zealand and the founder of the welfare state) Memorial Park which overlooks Auckland Harbour.

Description: A mix of level paths and steep paths/steps. Suitable for users of average fitness and mobility. May require boots in wet weather, running shoes suitable in dry weather. Caution: part of the walk  is a grassy track.

To see:  Auckland City views, Waitemata Harbour views, Orakei Wharf, MJ Savage Memorial, Bastion Point.
Coastal walks in Auckland part twoTime: approx. 50 minutes (about 4.55kms)
Start: Mission Bay Reserve or MJ Savage Memorial carpark

Stay on track…get your detailed guide and map brochures over at our Walks Store  (AC-018 Mission Bay to Okahu Bay Loop) and our Book Store (one of 12 walks featured in our book “Coastal part 2”).

Orakei Basin walkway

The  Orakei Basin walkway upgrade that began in 2010 is complete. The concrete has been poured onto a new pathway on the Macpherson Track.  And it is fantastic! The bridge over the Orakei Creek is beautiful. Now Orakei and Meadowbank are connected by a boardwalk along the railway line that both pedestrians and cyclists can use.

Orakei basin walkway

There is a pathway from Orakei Railway station and under Orakei Road that leads directly onto the boardwalk that crosses Orakei Basin beside the railway line. It is now easier to catch the train to Orakei and walk around the basin, then return and stop at the Kings Plant Barn for refreshments at the cafe.
(* Teen friendly walk)

The morning was still, clear and sunny causing the reflections on the water to be almost perfect. This tidal lagoon is in a volcanic crater. It was high tide, which we were not expecting. This walk takes you through small patches of bush and up high onto the ridge for a view of the city skyline.

Description: A mix of level and steep paths, steep steps. Suitable for most ages and levels of fitness and mobility, designed with flat shoes or running shoes in mind. Not suitable for wheelchairs and pushchairs.
This is a dog friendly walk with an off-leash area.(See other Dog Friendly Walks)
To see: Wonderful views of Mt Eden and Auckland City skyline. Small areas of bush. Railway track. Birdlife. Volcano crater.
Time: approx. 45 minutes (about 4 kms).
Parking: Near Kings Plant Barn, off Orakei Road near train station.
Buses: to Orakei Train Station
(Please note: no public toilets)

12 Volcano WalksSuggested Cafés:Kings Garden Cafe does very good coffee (and lunches) as does Cafe Greenfingers at the Palmers Garden Centre

Stay on track…get your detailed guide and map over at our Walks Store  (GS-017 Orakei Basin walkway) and our Book Store ( one of 12 walks featured in our book “Volcanoes”) or…you can download this free Orakei Basin walkway map from Auckland Council.

The Cascade Walkway

The Cascade Walkway (7.5km of shared paths between Meadowland Drive and Lloyd Elsmore Park, Pakuranga)  is another area that has been on our list to explore.  We set out from Howick Historical Village hoping to find well sign-posted walking paths. The best we found was a post with two arrows on it! (New signage has been installed since our first visit).

The Cascade walkway mapThe paths are great for cycling and walking (with your dog and/or your children).  There is diverse birdlife and native plants and trees. We were surprised by the lack of picnic/BBQ facilities, public toilets and children’s playgrounds within the Cascade Reserve.  However, we did come across 3 children’s playgrounds in total, making this a short family friendly walk.

walksinauckland.comNear the Historical Village is an area to play with marbles, and another area for kids to ride their bicycles on a specially made track. There is a duck pond  and some bench seats along the walkway nearby.
We had lunch and coffee at the Homestead Cafe (the homemade bacon and egg quiche was very tasty).

You can find the Auckland Council’s information on the Cascade Walkway here.

Dogs – off leash exercise areas available (see more Dog Friendly Walks)

Suitable for family cycling:Between Meadlowland Drive and Lloyd Elsmore Park, Pakuranga, 7.5km.

Description: Mainly level paths and a few slightly inclined paths. Suitable for users of average fitness and mobility. Mostly concrete paths with a small stretch of dirt track under trees. Buggy/pram friendly.
To see: Creeks, birdlife, small waterfall, bridges, tunnel. View of Rangitoto Island, Pigeon Mountain, Mt Wellington, Waitakere Ranges and One Tree Hill
Time: approx. 75 minutes. (about 6 kms)
Start: Bells Road off Cascades Road/Pakuranga Road MAP

Stay on track…get your detailed guide and map of the AE-040 Cascade Walkway Loop at our Walks Store and our Book Store (“Dog Friendly part 3” and “Best of the East”).


Watch this video to get a taste of Cascades Walkway: