Tag Archives: Nikau

Le Roys Bush Loop

Saying that you are going for a walk in the bush in urban Auckland, may sound like an oxymoron…however, that is one of the many wonderful aspects of walking in Auckland – you never have to go far to find native bush. Kauri Glen Reserve lives up to it’s name and Le Roys Bush follows a stream downhill to the restored wetlands of Little Shoal Bay, Northcote (which was once a tidal estuary filled with mangroves).

Little Shoal Bay © 2011-2013 Unleashed Ventures LimitedThis morning the sun was out (as well as the tide!), which made it a very pleasant and warm winter’s day.  Some of the smaller tracks are wet, muddy and slippery so if that doesn’t fit with you, then I suggest that you save them for a summer walk. The loop walk we have documented keeps you on the drier paths and boardwalks.

We were rewarded with sunlight filtering through the native trees, the sound of the bubbling stream and the songs of the native birds – we could have been deep in the bush instead of in the middle of urban residences!

  • Free Map for your smartphone – go to the new prototype site:  Le Roys Bush Walks [22Nov2015]

Kauri Glen is one of the oldest bush reserves on the Shore (measures about 25 acres and first sizeable pieces of land that was placed under public management) which includes trees such as taraire, totara, kauri, tawa, rewarewa and maire. Kiekie and nikau are abundant in this sub-tropical rainforest. Smaller species of note are pate and karapapa. The area is alive with the likes of tui, fantails and moreporks.

Little Shoal Bay Reserve is a great place to start and finish at – with plenty of parking and a fun looking children’s playground.  Dogs must be kept on leash to protect the flora and fauna.

Alternatively you could begin your walk at Birkenhead. A new track has been constructed (September 2016) from 31-45 Birkenhead Avenue. Called the Maori Pipi Walk.

You could pop into the Northcote Tavern  for lunch, coffee or a beer afterwards – full of character and nice ambience. Or stop at Sausalito Cafe.

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Please protect our Kauri.  Clean ALL dirt off your shoes and dogs feet BEFORE you arrive. Spray feet on entering and leaving. Dogs on leash at all times. Keep to the tracks. Enjoy your walk. 
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***Please note: September 2018 This track has been temporarily closed due to Kauri Dieback
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Description: Bush track and board walks. Slippery when wet. Suitable for users of average fitness and mobility.
To see: Native bush, waterfall, wetlands, views across Auckland Harbour, native birds.
Time: approx. 60 minutes. (about 5.0 kms)
Parking: Little Shoal Bay Reserve
Buses/Ferries: Queen Street, Onewa Road, Northcote MAP

Stay on track…get your detailed guide and map  (AN-079 Le Roys Bush Loop) over at our Walks Store and our Book Store (one of 12 walks featured in our books “Urban Bush” and “Dog Friendly Walks part 2”).

 

Botanic Gardens and Totara Park Loops

walks in AucklandA beautiful sunny morning made our trip south for a walk around the Auckland Botanic Gardens and Totara Park walking tracks and the Puhinui Stream forest, a wonderful experience.

We had set out to do a 5km walk but we ended up getting lost due to poor signage.

There was a good side to getting lost 1) we walked further than we had planned and 2) we found a look-out that we did not know existed which gave us a clear view all the way to the Auckland city skyline and across to Manukau Harbour.

The Puhinui Stream Forest Trail (the full loop trail is approx 4 kms) in Totara Park was gorgeous with the sunlight dappling the native ferns and palms. The trail took us past beautiful totara, puriri, nikau and kauri trees. We enjoyed soaking up the beauty of the lush native forest.

There are great spots to stop and picnic along the trail and children’s playground areas (including a  children’s flying fox). Dogs on-leash on the trail, but there are off-leash areas. It makes for a great family day out. (And if you are into mountain biking or want to give it a try, there is a 15 km mountain bike track here too).

Dogs – off leash exercise area between north side of the Gardens and Totara Park.

If you have children then we do recommend a visit to the Potter Children’s Garden (within the Botanic Gardens) – and as adults we enjoy visiting them too! The Auckland Botanical Gardens are magnificent and a wonderful place to visit all year round – the spring blossoms are stunning.

Description: A mix of level paths, steps and slightly inclined paths. Suitable for users of average fitness and mobility. May require boots in wet weather, running shoes suitable in dry weather.
To see: Auckland Botanic Gardens, native bush and palms
Time: approx. 75 minutes. (about 6 kms)
Start: Auckland Botanic Gardens Carpark MAP
Miko Cafe at Auckland Botanic Gardens Visitor Centre provided us with much needed refreshments (we especially enjoy the Piazza D’Oro coffee).

Stay on track…get your detailed guide and map (AS-037 Botanic Gardens and Totara Park Loops ) over at our Walks Store  and our Book Store (one of 12 walks featured in our books “Urban Bush”, “Dog Friendly Walks part 2” and “Best of the South”).

Parnell markets and urban bush walk in Auckland

Another beautiful autumn day and todays walk in Auckland Central is one of contrasts – from the quietness of secluded reserves to the noisy Parnell farmers markets. This Auckland urban bush walk is great to do all year round.

There are two markets:

Parnell Farmers Market – behind the Foundation for the Blind off Parnell Road. It is open from 8am to noon every Saturday. Today there was quite a variety of stalls from cheese to bread, to unusual pumpkins. The stall holders are very friendly and enjoyed giving us a taste of their products.

Walks in Auckland

French Style Farmers Market at La Cigale, off St Georges Bay Road. This is a bigger market with more variety. There is a wide range of delicious looking and smelling foods for humans plus an interesting looking stall of dog food. These markets are open Saturdays 8am to 1.30pm and Sundays 9am to 1.30pm. La Cigale cafe was busy with people catching up for coffee with friends and staying on for lunch. Again, everyone is friendly and happy to share a taste of their tasty produce. It is all locally produced so you know that it is fresh and in many cases organic.

We walked from the busy bustling markets to the peacefulness of reserves with birdlife, nikau palms and New Zealand native ferns, past quaint cottages and the massive Holy Trinity Cathedral and the more modest St John the Baptist Church.

Parnell Village is a popular shopping strip with many cafes and restaurants to choose from. To make this a full day outing, you may wish to stay and explore Parnell Village and learn about its history.

This is a great walk if you wish to take in both markets on a Saturday or you can exclude them if you prefer a quieter walk. Dog walk friendly with off-leash areas.

Description: A mix of level paths and steep paths/steps. Caution: Muddy and slippery when wet. 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.
To see: NZ native ferns palms and cycads, Waitemata Harbour views, farmers markets, old cottages.
Time: approx. 60 minutes. (about 3.92kms)
Start: Stratford Street (off Gladstone Road) MAP
Suggested Cafés: la Cigale, 69 St Georges Bay Road,     Rosie’s Café, 82 Gladstone Road


Short Walks in Auckland: Urban Bush
Stay on track…get your detailed guide and map brochures over at our Walks Store  (AC-009 Parnell Markets and Reserves) and our Book Store (one of 12 walks featured in our books “Urban Bush” and “Dog Friendly part 3”).

Churchill Park Loop

Churchill Park is one of a few walks in Auckland that does not have much shelter, so it was a great day to get into the park, with a pleasantly  warm sun and no rain.

The walk starts off going uphill and there are further gentle undulations – it fits the ‘fitness’ criteria! There is some variety – big pine tress, distant city skyline views, a path following a stream (where the Nikau Palms were showing off their red berries), a few cattle taking up what shade they could find and then once out of the park the fabulous views over the harbour and estuary.

Churchill Park, Glendowie Park and Roberta Reserve all have an off-leash dog exercise area and today there were dog owners taking advantage of the weather.

For children, there is an attractive playground area at the walk start and end point. Update June 2014: A recent redesign and reconstruction has transformed Roberta Reserve playground into a series of exciting, safe play spaces
for kids of all ages. For more adventurous youngsters, the park’s large colourful rope fort, eagle’s nest and swing basket are a real highlight.

Description:A mix of level paths, and a few steep paths. Suitable in dry weather. Suitable for users of all ages and abilities, suitable for normal footwear and for wheelchairs and pushchairs. May be muddy in places during the winter months.
To see: Sea views, city views, stream, private gardens, farm animals
Time: About 5kms (approx. 60 minutes).
Start: On corner of Robert Ave and Riddell Road. MAP
Playground: Corner of Riddell Road & Roberta Ave

Suggested Café: Ronnies Café, Corner of Riddell Road and Roberta Avenue (they do great iced coffees and date scones!)

Stay on track…get your detailed guide and map over at our Walks Store  (AE-007 Churchill Park) and our Book Store (one of 12 walks featured in our books “Coastal part 1”, “Dog Friendly Walks part 1” and “Best of the East”).