Great Barrier Island WalksHiking-tours on Great Barrier Island
Twelve must-do hikes on Great Barrier Island
Explore the hilly hinterland of Great Barrier Island. This 25km circular trail leads walkers into the woods and up to the peaks with amazing cabins in the hinterland to spend the night overlooking the island. Learn more about the Aotea Trail, Auckland's only multi-day hike, in our Aotea Trail Guide.
The route has several entranceways. Whanaparapara Road takes either the Kaitoke Hot Springs Tracks, Forest Road, Tramline Tracks, Tramline Tracks, Witney Tracks or Tramline Tracks and Pack Tracks. You can also enter from Aotea Road via Tramline Tracks, Palmers Tracks, Coopers Castle Tracks. From Kairara Bay take Forest Road.
A shallow, light and well developed stretch of crushed stone and footbridges leading directly to the wonder of nature of the Great Barrier Island. Kaitoke Hot Springs are fired of course by the ascending groundwater from subterranean volcanoes. On the Tramline and Peach Tree Tracks to the top of Mt Hobson (see below).
View more than 7 free natural hot springs in New Zealand. Kaitoke Hot Springs Tracks are well marked along Whangaparapara Road. They can also be approached via the tramline lane to the other end of the lane. The highest peak on the Great Barrier Island at 627m, Mt Hobson (Hirakimata) is the island's top walk.
You' re awarded with a panorama view of the whole island. One can even see Little Barrier Island, which seems to float in the faraway. From Mt Heale's hut, with more wood stairs than we can number! From Mt Heale Hut the trail begins.
Arrival via the Hot Springs-Tramline Track-Peach Tree Track (4 hrs each way), the Kaiaraara Track at Kairaara Hut (3 hrs each way) or via Windy Canyon and Palmers Track (2h30min each way). The Windy Canyon is a brief stroll up to breathtaking vistas through steep cliffs.
Then you can walk over Palmer's Track to Mt Heale Hut and then to Mt Hobsontop. On the way you will enjoy more and more unbelievable vistas over the island between regenerative forests. Palmer's Track also contains the wooden horse, an H-frame that was once used to lift trunks from one side of the nut before they were thrown down the other side.
Departure from Whangapoua Hill on Aotea Road. There is a sheer ascent to the top of Mt Whangaparapara (309m), the Whangaparapara Peak Trail leads you through regenerative wood. There is of course a great view of the harbour of Whangaparapara. This route begins near the Green Campsite, near the beginning of the tram line.
Much more ascents, more scrub and more breathtaking outlooks! Te Ahumata Trail follows an old mine route with gradually uphill gradients and takes you to a fallow path leading to the hill. On the way to the top at 398 metres above sea level you hike past amazing plants and see a historical mine.
In spite of the name, you don't want to be an old woman if you take the cliffy byway to a great viewpoint over Port FitzRoy. Crawl along a creek through the woods on Port FitzRoy Hill. Coming from Port FitzRoy, take Glenfield Road. Stroll through a cowrie orchard (the island once housed a giant cowrie wood industry), to a small scenic waterfall: a great photographic experience and a bath.
With a few gradients, the route is quite simple. Launch the Bridle Trail from the FitzRoy Store or Warrens Creek near the Akapoua Camping site. This itinerary shows some of the west shore and forests of Great Barrier Island. Bush's Beach Trail consists mainly of promenades to help save the cauri from caurii.
Once you've visited Bush's Beach, head on the Kiwiriki Track with some adventure cruises over Coffin's Creek (don't let the name put you off) and Kiwiriki River. Either take off from the Kairaara hut on Bush's Beach Track or from Maungapiko's Forest Road. Following a flat but beautiful clear brook for a section, you cross it several time on the way before climbing into the forrest and mountains.
It is another great place to watch skins and seabirds cross a gnarled (but absolutely safe) swing bridge in between. This is the right way if you want to explore a camp site with a great view of the coast! There are also no demanding ascents like most Great Barrier hiking trails, so it is possible with rucksack and camp equipment.
From Harataonga Camping site, the route ends at Aotea Road, just South of Okiwi Basin. One of the most demanding stretch of Great Barrier Island, you need to be well groomed with plenty of fresh and reasonably fitness as some of the stretch includes scraping in areas that are not as well maintained as other stretches on the island.
Rock climb through the northerly woods of Great Barrier Island, Te Paparahi and as far as Tataweka (526m).