Waikowhai Park is a large piece of bush land and attractive park land off Hillsborough Road. The view from the car park above the playground has views across Manukau Harbour to Mangere Mountain and Ambury Park Farm.
It has a fantastic playground for older children that has an extra long slide and a flying fox. There is also a large off leash dog exercise area. There are public toilets by the playground. It’s a great place for a picnic on a fine day – there are tables by the playground, seats along the undulating bush tracks and plenty of grass in the park land.
September 2015 – A new Waikowhai Walkway map is now available. It shows tracks in detail plus provides information on the geology and ecology of the area. Available from Mt Roskill Library and Puketapapa Local Board office.
You can walk along the Harbour foreshore at low tide only. The bush tracks to Wesley Bay tend to be muddy in winter, but there are concrete paths on the opposite side to the playground. If you enjoy bird spotting, then the bush tracks are the place to be.
The Puketapapa Local Board which is responsible for the park and this playground, say that they have been putting new tracks into the bush area, with the aim to build up a network so you can walk from the new foreshore beaches at Onehunga all the way to Blockhouse Bay. We looked for new tracks today but did not see any signs of them.
We like to find excuses to head to Mangere Bridge for a walk. The village has a vibrant atmosphere, as the cafes that spill out onto the pavement bring the village to life and there are always visitors. Sunday mornings are market days which bring in extra visitors.
On a fine day the view of the Manukau Harbour is brilliant, and if you are lucky there is interesting bird life to watch. During the summer months, we like to stop and get fresh veggies (and strawberries) from the market gardens in Kirkbride Road.
Today we embarked on a new buggy friendly loop walk that we had overlooked on previous visits. This one starts (and ends, of course) at Mangere Bridge Village, and heads around the harbour edge, under the motorway bridge, partly through the industrial area, along the base of Mangere Mountain and returns along the Kiwi Esplanade.
Description: Mainly level paths, including ramp to bridge over the motorway. Suitable for users of average fitness and mobility.
To see: Views of Manukau Harbour, One Tree Hill, Mangere Mountain; Pukeko and shore birds habitat.
Time: approx. 60 minutes. (about 5.5 kms)
Start: Coronation Road, Mangere Bridge MAP
Stay on track…get your detailed guide and map brochure (AS-109 Mangere Bridge Loop) over at our Walks Store.
When our two children were young, my husband and I would load up all our bicycles to venture out onto the Manukau Foreshore Walkway/Cycleway that runs between the Mangere Bridge to Hugo Johnson Drive in Penrose. Since then Grace and I have done the walk – to the end and back.
Today we explored the possibility of a circular walk taking in the industrial part of Penrose. While it is rather beautiful along the foreshore, the other half of the walk that took us through the Penrose industrial area is not at all pedestrian friendly.
It is a shame that a walkway was not planned and catered for within the industrial area, not only for the people who work there, but for visitors as well.
Another issue we came across was the walkway that is designated “no cyclists” at the Hugo Johnson Drive end, was unkempt and covered in all kinds of noxious weeds (which I have alerted Auckland Council about).
For the first time we looked in at Southdown Reserve (near the Southdown Power Station) – a very seedy looking reserve that I would not enter on my own.
On a bright note, the morning rain clouds dissipated, the sun emerged providing blue skies, the view of Mangere Mountain and Manukau Harbour was great, the birds were singing in the bush areas, and the shore birds were out in force in the lowering tide. And to top it off, we enjoyed each other’s company! (Followed by a very nice lunch at The Library Cafe in Onehunga – note new owners as of a week ago).
Self guided short circular walks in Auckland for health, fitness and fun