New Zealand’s best kept secret

Whangarei has lots to offer the adventurous traveller!  Not only has it got so MANY amazing walks, it also has some of the most beautiful and secluded beaches! Located in the North Island of NZ it is approximately 2.5 hrs from Auckland

Whangarei Scenic Reserve

Whangarei falls is a must see and you will find these magnificent falls in Whangarei Scenic Reserve.

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Whilst I was there I found a walk that started at the AH Reed Memorial Kauri park, off Whareora Rd.  It was an easy walk approximately 1.5km in distance.   I recommend this walk as not only does it take you to the Whangarei falls but you start off adventuring through a tree canopy walk among lush rainforest.

 

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Make sure you listen out for the unqiue sounds of the New Zealand bird wildlife that are present in the forest.   You will also come across the Pukenui falls which are lovely.   Following the track further you will see the the Hatea River which you cross via a little swing bridge. 
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You will then make your way towards the Whangarei falls which are 26.3 meters high! They are a spectacular sight as they were created more than two million years ago, falling over basalt cliffs.  

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 Mt Parihaka

Mt Parihaka has some wonderful tracks up to the summit that are a must for the keen adventurer.  To access these great tracks head to the car park on Mair St and make your way down the path to the Hatea River.

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There you will see a bridge which you can cross and begin your walk! I took the Drummond track up which was only 1.4km and didn’t take any longer than 40 minutes. Parihaka scenic reserve has not only some GREAT tracks but offers you a cultural experience. 

 

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As Mt Parihaka has cultural significance in the Maori culture, its name comes from the haka (a Maori war dance).  Furthermore at the summit you will find the memorial for those New Zealand men who died in World War II.  

 

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Making your way to the top of the summit you will pass through native New Zealand trees and ferns. Once you reach the summit the view is AMAZING and the best way to literally see all of Whangarei!  As you will be approximately 241 metres above sea level and have the best view of Whangarei’s beautiful harbor and town. 

 

 

Tutakaka coast

The Tutakaka coast is home to some of the most beautiful beaches in the WORLD! One of my favourite beaches being Matapouri Beach.

 

However it is very hard to pick a favourite, as I also love heading out to Ngunguru.  Which is a lovely little coastal village offering a nice place to swim, relax and explore!  The natural beauty of this region needs to be explored!

 

 

Luckily they have some awesome walking tracks surrounding the ocean which really allow you to adventure further.  Be sure to take one of the tracks near Matapouri beach and see some wonderful views then have a dip to cool off!

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Pataua South

Pataua South offers a unique travel experience and is just 45 minutes from Whangarei.   It is a fantastic spot for  various water activities, including surfing, swimming and kayaking! As well as many on land adventures including bike riding, picnicking and hiking!

 

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Just over the other side is Pataua North, you can walk over via a footbridge and you will find yourself at a crazy ocean beach.

 

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We ventured up the headland adjacent to where we were staying and came across these magnificent views! Definitely worth the trek, if you don’t mind uneven surfaces and a bit of rock climbing to make it to the top.  However you can always pull out early and admire the view. You will get a birds eye view of this stunning area!  

 

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You may choose to stay here for a few days, depending on availability you can rent a bach in the local area!

 

DSC00646 By REBECCA ROBINSON

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