Tag Archives: Playground

Botany and Dannemora circuits

This short loop walk exploring the reserves from Botany Town Centre to Dannemora is suitable for people who work at Botany Town Centre and enjoy a short walk in their breaks, families with young children (playground, ducks) and dog owners.

Botany-Dannemora walk circuit. Copyright @2014 Unleashed Ventures LimitedThe walkways are flat and concrete – ideal for wet days, and for buggies and scooters.  We saw ducks, pukeko and shags on the waterways. There is a children’s playground en-route, picnic tables and off leash dog exercise areas.

The walking route is great for cyclists, prams/buggies and dog walkers.

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: Reserves and waterways.
Time: approx. 45 minutes (about 3.4 kms).
Start:  Town Centre Drive, Chapel Road, Botany. MAP

Stay on track…Find this walk (AE-102 Botany to Dannemora Loop) and other walk brochures with map and directions at our Walk Store

Westhaven Loop Walk

It has been a while since we have headed down to Westhaven and Point Erin Park.  We found three good reasons to make a return visit. It seemed appropriate to be down at Auckland’s waterfront while TeamNZ was enduring their second race of the competition for the America’s Cup! We had watched the new pedestrian bridge crossing the motorway from the steep steps of Jacob’s Ladder being built, but still had not traversed it.  And the dark grey clouds threatened rain and we did not want to be a long way from shelter.

Westhaven Pedestrain BridgeAnd the results were…TeamNZ won their second race, the pedestrian bridge looks better when you are on it and we stayed dry!

Since we last visited,  the Council has built a new pathway that runs alongside the motorway, with panels that effectively screen the motorway traffic noise. It promises to be beautiful in December when the red flowers of the pohutukawa trees are in bloom.

Dogs – this walk includes an off leash dog exercise area.

Westhaven Promenade - short walks in Auckland

30th January 2015: The Westhaven Promenade is now open. This will form part of a 20km continuous walkway and cycleway that runs from Herne Bay in the west to Tamaki Drive in the east. Read more: Westhaven Promenade

 

Description: Mainly level paths, two flights of steps. Suitable for users of average fitness and mobility. Running shoes suitable.
To see:  Auckland City views, Rangitoto Island views, harbour views, Harbour Bridge.
Time: approx. 45 minutes. (about 4.24 kms).
Point Erin Park for Dog off leash area, Playground, Picnic site. Children’s scooter friendly apart from the steps.
Start: Westhaven Drive, Saint Mary’s Bay (Harbour Bridge end) MAP

Dog friendly walks in Auckland - part threeSuggested cafe: Sitting Duck

Stay on track…get your detailed guide and map over at our Walks Store  (AC-088 Westhaven Loop) and our Book Store (one of 12 walks featured in our book “Dog Friendly Walks part 3”).

Lynfield Coastal Walk

The views across to Blockhouse Bay and Manukau Heads in the far distance along the Lynfield coastal walk this morning, were spectacular! The sun was shining, the sky was clear and the tide (check here for tide times) was almost full.

Lynfield Coastal Walk © 2011-2013 Unleashed Ventures Limited

This was an explore walk for us – trying to work out the best circular route without too much street walking.  The route has a few steep ups and downs, which makes it a good workout. We met some people who were walking their dog off leash along the reserve.

July 2016 Update: The sculpture “Open Stone” by late Japanese sculptor Hiroaki Ueda is now on view in the Manukau Domain, Lynfield.

Description: Bush track, steps, inclines. Muddy in places when wet. Suitable for users of average fitness and mobility.
To see: Native bush, views across Manukau Harbour, native birds.
Time: approx. 45 minutes. (about 3.75 kms). One small children’s playground. Dog friendly off-leash in Manukau Domain (alongside the Lynfield Cove Walkway).
Parking: Himalaya Crescent, Lynfield.
Buses: Halsey Drive, Lynfield MAP

Stay on track…find this walk’s map and directions guide (AC-086 Lynfield Coast & Bush Walk) and other walk self-guides at our Walk Store.

 

 

Beach Haven Coastal Walk

The Beach Haven coastal walk on Auckland’s North Shore hugs to the coastline with views to Bayview, Hobsonville Point and the bush that runs alongside the Upper Harbour Highway. The route follows Hellyers Creek, then all the twists and turns of the small mangrove-filled inlets, and through trees filled with birdsong.

Beachaven Coastal walk © 2011-2013 Unleashed Ventures LimitedToday was rainy and windy – the yachts sailing out from Hobsonville Point were making the most of the winds.  But we were sheltered by the trees and small gullies.

This walk begins at the Community Creche entrance to Shepherd’s Park, where there is a children’s playground  a cyclists learning track and a fitness trail, as well as sports fields. The signs indicate that dogs must be kept on-leash (but we did see dogs off leash along coastal walkway).

If you wanted to make this a day outing, you could catch a ferry from Britomart to Beach Haven.  Bring a picnic lunch.

Description: Bush track, steps, inclines. Muddy in places when wet. Suitable for users of average fitness and mobility.
To see: Native bush, views across Auckland Harbour, native birds.
Time: approx. 60 minutes. (about 5.0 kms)
Parking: Beach Haven Community Creche carpark.
Buses: Tramway Road stop on Beach Haven Road.
Ferry: to Beach Haven MAP

Cafe suggestion: CAFE AU BON COIN CAFE PATISSERIE

Stay on track…find this walk’s map and directions guide (AN-084 Beach Haven Coastal Walk) and other walk self-guides at our Walk Store.

Bayview Giant Kauri Walk

Bayview Giant Kauri tree © 2011-2013 Unleashed Ventures Limited We returned to Bayview on the North Shore to complete a circular walk in a different direction to our previous Bayview Coast and Bush Walk.

Today’s walk starts off in Lynn Reserve, and heads up a bush filled gully with a small stream, to a giant Kauri tree (over 2 metres in diameter and is said to be about 800 years old) among a grove of smaller kauri trees which are growing in Leigh Scenic Reserve.  It is awesome!

The route joins up with the Glenfield Coastal Walkway and heads around to the boat ramp and Manuka Reserve at the bottom of Manuka Road.  Hearing the song of the tui birds as we slowly walked up the incline of Manuka Road gave us great encouragement.

This walk through the bush and along the Upper Harbour coastline is not only beautiful, it provides a great workout if you are into fitness. It is also a fun family walk that includes two children’s playgrounds, plus dog off leash exercise areas.

The new playground at Lynn Reserve looks great, and in the week since we last visited, a children’s ‘learn to cycle track‘ has been installed.

Description: Bush track, steps, inclines and board walks. Muddy in places when wet. Suitable for users of average fitness and mobility.
To see: Native bush, including Giant Kauri, small waterfalls, views across Auckland Harbour to Hobsonville Point, native birds.
Time: approx. 75 minutes. (about 5.8 kms). Dog off leash areas. Three children’s playgrounds.
Parking: Lynn Road, Bayview near Glenfield.
Buses: 111 Lynn Road, Bayview MAP

P3 Dog friendly walks in AucklandStay on track…get your detailed guide and map (AN-082 Bayview Giant Kauri Walk) over at our Walks Store and our Book Store (one of 12 walks featured in our book “Dog Friendly Walks part 3”).

 

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.

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”).

 

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”)

Kingsland-Mt Eden Loop

This Auckland walk takes you from Kingsland Train Station (with views of Mt Albert), touches the city end of Dominion Road, Eden Quarter, and through the suburban streets of Mt Eden, to Mt Eden Village and return.

Kingsland, AucklandYou can enjoy the tree lined footpaths and beautiful old homes.  And this walk makes it very apparent that Eden Park is really in Kingsland.

You can choose to take your time and stop at various shopping precints along the route or do the 90 minute walk in one gulp!

Description: Mainly level paths and steps. Suitable for users of average fitness and mobility.
To see:  Kingsland, Dominion Road, Mt Eden Shops; residential homes
Time: approx. 90 minutes. (about 7.0 kms). Dogs on-leash. One small children’s playground.
Start: Kingsland Train Station MAP

Stay on track…find this walk’s map and directions guide ( AC-065 Kingsland-Mt Eden Loop) and other walk self-guides at our Walk Store

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”).

Mangere Bridge to Onehunga Loop Walk

Another sunny winter morning in Auckland and no wind – perfect for a walk in Mangere and Onehunga!  The Manukau Harbour tide was in and the water was like a mirror!

View of Mangere Mountain from the old Mangere Bridge

Many people were out walking, running, cycling and fishing.

This walk takes in views of Mangere Mountain and Manukau Harbour, the harbour shore birds, mangrove swamp area, Onehunga Wharf, Onehunga Mall, a dog off-leash area in Onehunga Bay Reserve, Jellicoe Park (with it’s historical houses, picnic tables, children’s playground and public swimming pool). With a distance of 7.5kms, it is a bit longer than our usual walks.

There are several cafes to choose from at Mangere Bridge village along Coronation Road as well as a good choice of funky cafes in Onehunga.

You could even catch the train to Onehunga and pick up the walk from the station!

The New Zealand Transport Agency is proposing to replace the old Mangere Bridge.  Stop and relax at Onehunga’s beach Taumanu. Discover more about Onehunga’s rich past, click here.

Nearby places to visit: Watercare Coastal walkwayAmbury Regional ParkVilla Maria Winery and cafeButterfly Creek,  Otuataua Stonefields historic reserve , Mangere Strawberry and Vegetable Farm @ 127 Kirkbride Road.

Other Mangere Walks:  Ambury Park Farm WalkMangere MountainMangere Esplanade Loop

Description: A mix of mainly level paths, steps and inclined paths. Suitable for users of average fitness and mobility. May require boots in wet weather, running shoes suitable in dry weather.
To see : Views of Mangere Mountain and Manukau Harbour, the harbour shore birds, mangrove swamp area, Onehunga Wharf, Onehunga Mall, a dog off-leash area in Onehunga Bay Reserve, Onehunga’s beach Taumanu, Jellicoe Park (with its historical houses, picnic tables, children’s playground and public swimming pool)
Time : approx. 90 minutes. (about 7.5 kms)
Start from: Coronation Road or Church Road

Stay on track…find this walk’s map and directions guide (AC-049 Mangere Bridge to Onehunga Loop) and other walk self-guides at our Walk Store

Onehunga Foreshore – Taumanu

We began our walk today with a route in mind, starting off from Onehunga Train Station. But as we progressed we changed our mind and found a walk that neither of us had done before, taking in part of Onehunga’s foreshore (as of November 2015 Taumanu Reserve).

View of Mangere Mountain from Onehunga Foreshore. The Foreshore has since been turned into Taumanu Reserve.

The walk follows the edge of the Onehunga Bay Reserve and then the edge of Manukau Harbour along Orpheus Drive. In summer, I would expect to see more shore birds. Even though the walk passes through part of the industrial area of Onehunga, it is still interesting.

This mostly flat walk can be accessed from Mangere Village also.

Onehunga Bay Reserve has a great wide open space (off leash dog exercise area) for dogs to run around in, and, at high tide, a lagoon to swim in. At low tide it is an esturine mud flat full of stinky, black mud (gumboots required in winter/after rain in the reserve itself). Cycle paths and a children’s playground included.

UPDATE 2013/2014:
Auckland Council is “currently restoring the foreshore next to Orpheus Drive to bring back a natural coastal edge and create recreational opportunities for the community. The project will provide high-quality open space, beaches, a boat ramp and picnic areas. A new bridge will connect the new land to the Onehunga lagoon.” (source www.aucklandcouncil.govt.nz)
Video: Secrets of New Zealand’s new $28m beach

To see: views of Mangere Mountain, shore birds, Onehunga Wharf, mangroves, Waikaraka cemetery, industrial area, reclaimed beach at Taumanu Reserve.
Time : approx. 60 minutes. (about 5.77 kms)
Children’s Playgrounds: Onehunga Bay Reserve
Dogs: Off leash area in Onehunga Bay Reserve (caution: muddy after rain). Dogs not allowed within Taumanu Reserve.
Start from: Princes Street, Onehunga MAP

Coastal walks in Auckland part twoWe stopped off at The Library Cafe for refreshments. There is a Columbus Cafe on the corner of Onehunga Mall and Princes Street.

Stay on track…get your detailed guide and map over at our Walks Store  (AC-046 Onehunga Foreshore Loop) and our Book Store (one of 12 walks featured in our books “Coastal part 2” and “Dog Friendly Walks part 3”).

Point Erin and Auckland harbour walk

Auckland Harbour Bridge

A glorious day after very rough weather earlier this week made the walk today very enjoyable.  The sun shone on the full tide, which encouraged me to take many photos as we walked around Westhaven Drive and under the Harbour Bridge.

This Auckland walk not only has fabulous views, it is mostly flat (apart from the steep steps at Jacob’s Ladder (which have recently been shortened)), Victoria Park has a great children’s playground and skate park, and there are beautiful old homes to enjoy. There is also a dog off leash area along the way.  Victoria Park Markets are not yet fully re-opened but there are cafes and a few retails stores.

Westhaven Promenade - short walks in Auckland

30th January 2015: The Westhaven Promenade is now open. This will form part of a 20km continuous walkway and cycleway that runs from Herne Bay in the west to Tamaki Drive in the east. Read more: Westhaven Promenade

 

Dogs – this walk includes an off leash dog exercise area in Point Erin Park.

Description: A mix of level paths, one lot of steep steps. Suitable for users of average fitness and mobility. Running shoes suitable.
To see:  Auckland City views, Rangitoto Island views, harbour views, Harbour Bridge.
Time: approx. 60 minutes. (about 5.4 kms)
Parking: Carparks in Westhaven Drive

We stopped at the Sitting Duck Cafe for a coffee in the sun, overlooking the moored yachts – bliss!  I didn’t want to leave…

Coastal walks in Auckland part 2Stay on track…get your detailed guide and map over at our Walks Store  (AC-043 Point Erin and Harbourside) and our Book Store (one of 12 walks featured in our book “Coastal part 2”).

Karangahape Road and Parks

walks in AucklandThe weather did not look too promising this morning (it did improve), so we set out to walk the back streets and parks of Auckland City.  This walk provides fine views of Mt Eden (down the side roads off Karangahape Road), the Harbour Bridge and the Sky Tower.

walks in AucklandWe got our ‘out in nature’ hit in Myers and Western Parks (with children’s playgrounds and a dog friendly off-leash exercise area). The Children’s playground in Western Park has seven slides and a Flying Fox, making this a short family friendly walk.

Auckland doesn’t seem so big when we walk it – it seemed to take no time at all to walk from Aotea Square to Ponsonby!

This is a great walk for visitors to Auckland and for families.  Catch the train to Britomart to begin the mini adventure!

We walked up to the Art Gallery in Kitchener Street to try the Mojo Cafe on Level One of the Art Gallery for the first time.

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:  Views of Mount Eden, Auckland City, Auckland Harbour bridge, parks, K’Rd shops
Time: Loop approx. 60 minutes. (about 4 kms)
Parking: 1 hour meter parking off Queen Street (2 hours on Sundays)

Dog friendly walks in Auckland - part two
Stay on track…get your detailed guide and map over at our Walks Store (AC-036 Karangahape Road and Parks) and our Book Store (one of 12 walks featured in our book “Dog Friendly Walks part 2”).

 

Pigeon Mountain and the Wetlands Loop Walk

Pigeon Mountain in the suburb of Half Moon Bay is another of Auckland’s volcanoes.  The mountain was originally three times its present size but its two craters have been quarried away to provide scoria. It is called Pigeon Mountain because in early European times, native pigeons called ‘kereru‘ used to live here.

Walks in Auckland
View from Pigeon Mountain

You can walk to the top of Pigeon Mountain and from the summit there are great views of Tamaki Estuary and Wakaaranga Creek Reserve mangroves, whilst below are boardwalks that cross over wetlands that house nests for the pukeko bird.

walks in Auckland

The nearby mangrove edged Wakaaranga Creek has good paths for wheels.  And there is a cool long slide in a playground that is worth checking out. Because most of this walk is in a bird reserve, dogs must be kept on-leash. However if you choose to follow the 5km Pakuranga Rotary walkway, there are several areas for off-leash exercise between the Pakuranga Sailing Club and Wakaaranga Reserve. This is a mostly flat walk if the walk to the summit of Pigeon Mountain is omitted.

It is disappointing to find some pathways between houses and roads blocked off with iron bars that prevent users of wheelchairs, prams and cycles from using the path.

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 City views, Rangitoto Island views, Volcano summit, wetlands, Pukeko birds habitat.
Time: approx. 75 minutes. (about 6 kms). Allow extra time to walk to the summit of Pigeon Mountain.
Start from: Gills Road just off Pigeon Mountain Road MAP

Stay on track…get your detailed guide and map over at our Walks Store  (AE-033 Pigeon Mountain and the wetlands) and our Book Store ( one of 12 walks featured in our books “Volcanoes” and “Best of the East”).

 

Moire Park, Massey

Walks in Auckland This is the second time we have been to Moire Park in Massey/West Harbour West Auckland (the first time was 12 months ago).  The park has many paths of different grades to suit all kinds of walkers. The walking circuit we have documented takes in the variety of the paths and scenery – from native bush to a hill view of the City.

This is a dog friendly walk. (See other Dog Friendly Walks) And there is a variety of playgrounds for children to enjoy. There is a BBQ and picnic area available.  And a Pump Park for young cyclists.

walks in auckland

We studied the map near where we parked the car in Granville Drive (a great looking children’s playground nearby). We thought we had it sussed and set off. We had a print-out of the map with us because even though there are markers pointing out the tracks, they are not numbered or colored. This area would be enhanced with better sign-posting.

Description: A mix of level paths and steep paths. Suitable for users of average fitness and mobility. May require boots in wet weather, running shoes suitable in dry weather. Muddy tracks after rain.
To see: Auckland City views, Waitakere Hills view, native trees and fauna, urban development.
Time: approx. 75 minutes. (about 6 kms)
Start: Westgate Shopping Centre. MAP

Stay on track…get your detailed guide and map over at our Walks Store  (GS-031 Moire Park Bush Walk) and our Book Store (one of 12 walks featured in our books “Urban Bush” and “Dog Friendly Walks part 1”).