Walking and Tramping
The East Coast is generally more sheltered with sandy bays suitable for water sports and rocky headlands where fishing, snorkling and scuba diving are popular.
Cape Reinga - Tapotupotu Bay
Time: 2 1/2 hours.
Length: 4 1/2 kms.
A fairly steep climb via Sandy Bay provides great coastal views. the track begins at the Cape Reinga carpark or the western end of Tapotupotu Bay following orange marker posts.
Cape Reinga Toad to Pandora via Kauri Bush.
Time: 40 minute walk to Kauri Bush Walk turnoff; 2 hours to Pandora.
Length: 2kms; 6kms
Pandora is a beautiful sandy bay accessible only by foot via the coastal walkway (described below) or from the Cape Reinga Road.
The four wheel drive standard road to Pandora is suitable for walking or mountain biking.
A side track leads to a remnant of Kauri forest that once covered the Far North - it takes about 1 1/2 hours return. Another side track, 1 km up the road, to the right leads up to Te Paki trig - the highest point in the area.
Cape Reinga Coastal Walkway - (Kapowairua - Pandora - Cape Reinga) 11 hours.
Time: Kapowairua to Pandora - 3 hours.
Length: 8 1/2 kms.
Time: Pandora to Tapotupotu Bay - 5 1/2 hours.
Length: 9 kms.
Time: Tapotupotu Bay to Cape Reinga - 2 1/2 hours.
Length: 4 1/2 kms.
This spectacular coastal walkway passes a dramatic coastline, with sand dune and headlands between Kapowairua on the East Coast and Te Paki stream on the West Coast.
Trampers need to be fit and self sufficient. It pays to carry water as small streams along the way can dry up over summer. There are no huts, but there are several areas for camping and the weather is mild compared to other parts of New Zealand.
Make sure your tent is mosquito proof over the summer months!
From Kapowairua the walkway follows the beach to Pandora. If the tide prevent, you can walk behind the dunes and over the headland at the eastern side of pandora.
Fruit trees around the site mark a former tourist camp. There is an open grassy area suitable for self sufficient overnight camping. The next section of walkway between Pandora and Tapotupotu Bay mainly follows old farm tracks - reminders of the past use of this area.
The track departs uphill behind the grassy flat, to the Darkies Ridge junction. The ridge is undulating offering spectacular views until it drops steeply to the Tapotupotu campsite and estuary, which is best crossed at low tide.
The walkway continues to Cape Reinga at the western end of Tapotupotu Bay - 2 1/2 hours. From Cape Reinga the walkway continues on down the West Coast.
The West Coast is more wild and exposed that the East, with spectacular golden sand dunes.
Te Werahi Gate
Time: 30 minutes to Te Werahi Beach.
Length: 2 1/2 kms.
Time: 1 hour 15 minutes to Twilight Beach.
Length: 4 kms.
From the gate there are two well-graded walks to the coast which connect with the coastal walkways. A dry weather road across the farm leads to the signpost marking the beginning of the two tracks.
A day's round trip (4 1/2 - 5 hours) can also be made through fabulous scenery - take care to follow the orange topped marker posts over the sand dunes.
Te Paki Stream
Spectacular dune walking from the road end.
Cape Reinga Coast Walk
Time: Cape Reinga to Te Paki Stream - 8 hours.
Time: Cape Reinga to Te Werahi Beach - 1/2 hours
Length: 1 1/4 km.
Time: Cape Reinga to Cape Maria Van Diemen turnoff - 1 hour 45 minutes
Length: 6 kms.
Time: Cape Reinga to Twilight Beach - 3 hours 30 minutes.
Length: 8 1/2 kms.
Time: Twilight Beach to Te Paki Stream road end - 3 hours 45 minutes.
The walkway starts from behind the shop at Cape Reinga and leads down past steep cliffs to the long sweeping Te Werahi Beach. This section makes a nice "short walk" or half day excursion.
The beach walk takes nearly one hour and Te Werahi stream is crossed at the far end of the beach - preferably at low tide.
From the stream at low tide the beach and rocks can be followed around the point toward Cape Maria Van Diemen. If the tide does not allow, follow the orange marker posts over Herangi Hill and to the sign indicating the side track to Cape Maria Van Diemen (1 1/2 hours return).
The main walkway continues along cliff tops through flax and manuka scrublands then drops down to Twilight Beach. A sign indicates an alternative route back to Te Werahi gate. Travel along Twilight Beach - about 40 minutes.
There are 2 suitable sites for self sufficient camping at the northern and southern ends of the beach and another at the southern side of Scotts Point.
The walkway climbs up and over Scotts Point following marker posts then drops down to the beach crossing a swamp via a boardwalk and down a steep set of steps.
From here Te Paki stream mouth is about a 1 hour beach walk, and a further 1 hour up stream to the road and toilet.
The coast can be followed further south from Te Paki stream, distances are -
The Bluff 19km,
Mokaikai Scenic Reserve and North Cape Scientific Reserve
Permission to cross Maori land to get to Mokaikai must be obtained from Muriwhenua Incorporation,
phone: (09) 409-7831.
A DOC permit is required to enter North Cape Scientific Reserve, these are not granted for recreational use.