Walks

A walk in the Wairarapa can be anything from a short lakeside stroll to a multi-day tramp along the coast or in the bush-clad Tararua Ranges. 

Pick up maps, tips and DOC Hut Passes from an i-SITE Visitor Centre.

Wairarapa Walks

Catered & Guided Walks
  • Wildside Walks will get you deeper into the mountains with helicopter transfers to the best fishing, walking and hunting spots.
  • Tora Coastal Walk has spectacular scenery, gourmet food and great hospitality. Enjoy a 3 day walk among private hill-country farms, river valleys, native bush, streams, hilltop ridges and the magnificent Tora coastline. To top each day off you will enjoy homemade food and a well earned rest in stylish and comfortable accommodation.
  • Whareama Coastal Walk is a fantastic 2 or 3 day walking experience over private farmland and isolated Wairarapa coastline. Accommodation is in an historic homestead or cottage and large hunting and fishing lodge, with all meals provided.
  • Orui Coastal Walk is a fantastic three-night, three-day walking experience over farmland and Wairarapa coastline. The walk begins and ends at Orui Station located at Riversdale Beach (45 minutes drive east of Masterton).
  • Kawakawa Station Walk is a 1 or 3 day through farmland, river valleys and native bush. Views of Cook Strait and South Island, cool comfortable accommodation and great food are highlights.
Family Walks

Near Masterton

Henley Lake in Masterton has a network of flat walking tracks winding through 43 hectares of wetlands and native plantings with Henley Lake as the star. Viewing towers over the lake and wetlands allow for a different perspective of the reserve.

Lansdowne Recreational Trail in Masterton has groomed lime-chip tracks allowing views of Masterton, Tararua Range and a hidden lake which looks spectacular in autumn and a great place to have a picnic with the kids. 

Mount Holdsworth is near Masterton and has two particularly good walks for families. Donnelly Flats is an easy flat walk through bush while Rocky Lookout is a slightly more challenging walk through bush to excellent views up and down the valleys.

Kiriwhakapapa 15 minutes north of Masterton is a well-graded walk passing through forest that has regenerated well after being logged for its rimu in the 1930s. Another attractive feature is the many planted redwoods.

Rewanui Forest Park is a series of loop walks through a 334 hectare farm with a significant stand of native bush and areas of forestry production. Towards the tops there are some wonderful views of the taipo terrain.

Deliverance Cove at Castlepoint, 60 minutes from Masterton is a spectacular coastal walk with excellent views of the famous Castlepoint Lighthouse and Castle Rock.

 

Near Carterton

Waiohine Gorge near Carterton is a spectacular gorge carved by the Waiohine River. The largest bridge of its kind in New Zealand crosses the gorge and makes for a spectacular start and finish to any walk.

Carter Scenic Reserve near Carterton follows a boardwalk through a recovering wetland and remnant of flooded forest, returning via a loop track through the drier forest section. Kahikatea trees dominate the forest with a root system that extends snake-like over the surface of the swamp.

Fensham Reserve near Carterton is a large loop track which takes you through a variety of terrain from low lying wetlands to wind swept hill tops and through some towering native trees. Labels on the trees and bushes make the walk all the more interesting.

 

Near Featherston

Featherston Reserves Walkway is a series of four short walking tracks all within an easy walk of Featherston. Two of the walking tracks stand out for variety and access, with one offering good views across Featherston and the Wairarapa and the other being a short loop track through native bush.

Wairarapa Moana is a series of walks around Lake Wairarapa and forms the largest wetland in the southern North Island, covering over 9,000 hectares. The area has traditionally been important to local Maori as an area for the gathering of food and plant material.

 

Near Martinborough

Rapaki Walk, Martinborough is a loop track across farmland with spectacular views of the Wairarapa valley and Martinborough vineyards. Near the highest point, a stile takes walkers to an optional viewpoint over the scenic Te Muna Valley.

Palliser Vineyard Walk, Martinborough takes you around Palliser Vineyard towards the river and back through the centre of the vineyard.

Town Walks

In Masterton

Henley Lake in Masterton has a network of flat walking tracks winding through 43 hectares of wetlands and native plantings with Henley Lake as the star.  Viewing towers over the lake and wetlands allow for a different perspective of the reserve.

Lansdowne Recreational Trail in Masterton has groomed lime-chip tracks allowing views of Masterton, Tararua Range and a hidden lake which looks spectacular in autumn and a great place to have a picnic.

 

In Greytown

Woodside Trail is a walking or cycling trail which effectively links Greytown with the nearest railway station, Woodside. The trail takes you through quiet farmland, native plantings and heritage trees to Woodside Station with great views of the Tararua Ranges.

 

In Featherston

Featherston Reserves Walkway is a series of four short walking tracks all within an easy walk of Featherston. Two of the walking tracks stand out for variety and access, with one offering good views across Featherston and the Wairarapa and the other being a short loop track through native bush.

 

In Martinborough

Martinborough vineyards are so close to town and each other that they make a great walk. Just pick up a map from the Martinborough i-SITE Visitor Centre.

Rapaki Walk, Martinborough is a loop track across farmland with spectacular views of the Wairarapa valley and Martinborough vineyards. Near the highest point, a stile takes walkers to an optional viewpoint over the scenic Te Muna Valley.

Palliser Vineyard Walk, Martinborough takes you around Palliser Vineyard towards the river and back through the centre of the vineyard.

Mountain Walks

MOUNTAIN ALERTS should always be checked here before departing on a tramp into the mountains.

Hut Tickets are essential for an overnight stay in a back country hut. Purchase your hut tickets and hut passes from the Masterton i-SITE Visitor Centre.

Topographical Maps of the back country are available at i-SITE Visitor Centres.

 

Catered & guided Walks:

Wildside Walks will get you deeper into the mountains with helicopter transfers to the best fishing, walking and hunting spots.

Tararua Walks take you through virgin native bush and alongside a crystal clear river to see New Zealand native birds and wild deer (if you're quiet enough) while enjoying the spectacular views of the surrounding Tararua mountains and valleys.

 

Near Masterton and Carterton

Tararua Forest Park provides an outstanding variety of tramping, hunting and walking opportunities in a wild, natural landscape. At 116,535 hectares it is the largest conservation park managed by the Department of Conservation in the North Island.

 

Near Featherston

Rimutaka Forest Park walks don't reach the alpine heights of the Tararuas but still has an excellent walk across the Rimutaka Rail Trail.

 

Near Martinborough

Aorangi Forest Park has probably one of the more memorable walks through the badland rock formations of the Putangirua Pinnacles.

Coastal Walks

Catered & Guided Walks

  • Tora Coastal Walk starts with an overnight stay in renovated shearers accommodation before setting off across private coastal farms and river valleys. A highlight is the Tora coastline with a ship wreck and empty beaches. The food is as famous as the walk; ask for a copy of the cook book.
  • Whareama Coastal Walk is a fantastic 2 or 3 day walking experience over private farmland and isolated Wairarapa coastline. Accommodation is in very comfortable rustic cottages, with all meals provided.
  • Orui Coastal Walk is a fantastic three-night, three-day walking experience over farmland and Wairarapa coastline. The walk begins and ends at Orui Station located at Riversdale Beach (45 minutes drive east of Masterton).
  • Kawakawa Station Walk is a 3 day, 3 night walk through farmland, river valleys and native bush. Views of Cook Strait and South Island, cool comfortable accommodation and great food are highlights.

 

Near Masterton

Deliverance Cove at Castlepoint, 60 minutes from Masterton is a spectacular coastal walk with excellent views of the famous Castlepoint Lighthouse and Castle Rock.

Honeycomb Rock at Glenburn Station near Flat Point, 60 minutes from Masterton, is an amazing outcrop on the Wairarapa coast, named for its remarkable cell-like weathered pattern which gives the rock a honeycomb appearance.

 

Near Featherston

Ocean Beach is on Palliser Bay and walking these shores provides good beach combing.

The Orui Walk is a fantastic three-night, three-day walking experience over private farmland and Wairarapa coastline. The walk begins and ends at Orui Station located at Riversdale Beach (45 minutes drive east of Masterton).
The Waiohine River has carved out a spectacular gorge, bisecting the landscape and setting an attractive backdrop. The suspension bridge spanning the gorge forms a spectacular gateway to the Tararua Forest Park.
The Featherston Reserves Walkway is a series of four short walking tracks all within an easy walk of Featherston.
This walking track takes you around Palliser Vineyard towards the river and back through the centre of the vineyard. Park anywhere near the Martinborough Top 10 Holiday Park and follow the signs.
Follow the boardwalk through a recovering wetland and remnant of flooded forest at Carters Reserve just outside on Carterton.
Just outside of Carterton Fensham reserve is large loop track that takes you through towering native trees and it's one of the best walks in the Wairarapa for families.
Groomed lime-chip tracks allow views of Masterton, Tararua Range and a hidden lake; a great place to have a picnic with the kids. The Fourth Street entrance just off State Highway 2 is the closest to Masterton.
The Tararua Range provides Wellington, Wairarapa, Horowhenua and Manawatu with an outstanding variety of tramping, hunting and walking opportunities in a wild, natural landscape.
One of the most popular day trips in the park is the climb to Mountain House Shelter along the easy grade of the Gentle Annie Track.
Totara Flats Hut is in a beautiful setting at the confluence of the Waiohine River and Totara Creek. At one end of the tramp the track crosses the Waiohine Gorge suspension bridge, the largest of its kind in New Zealand.
The Mt Holdsworth - Jumbo Circuit is a two to three day tramp to some of the best alpine tops travel in the Tararua Forest Park. The bush tracks are all well marked and signposted and streams are bridged.
The Rimutaka Rail Trail is a gently graded 18 km walk or mountain bike ride over the spectacular Rimutaka Ranges. It is part of the longer Rimutaka Cycle Trail, which links up with Wellington.
The Putangirua Pinnacles are some of the most amazing rock formations you’ll ever see. Allow at least two hours return and take food and water. This is one of the most incredible walks in Wairarapa.
Ocean Beach is across Lake Onoke from Lake Ferry but can be accessed down Western Lake Road from Featherston in about 40 minutes and from Martinborough in about 50 minutes. This part of the coast is close to one of the world’s top ranked lodges at Wharekauhau Country Estate.
Wildside Walks specialises in Wairarapa helicopter transfers deep into the Tararua Ranges as well as guided walks and fishing trips.
Spectacular scenery, gourmet food and warm Wairarapa hospitality – the Tora Coastal Walk has it all! An amazing 3 day walk among private hill-country farms, river valleys, native bush, streams, hilltop ridges and the magnificent Tora coastline. To top each day off you will enjoy homemade food and a well earned rest in comfortable accommodation.
The Barra Track to Mitre Flats is excellent as that first, slightly more challenging family tramp. The tramp is just 15 minutes from Masterton at the end of Upper Waingawa Road; in the Tararuas.
Kawakawa Station walk is a 1- or 3 day, 3 night walk through farmland, river valleys and native bush. Views of Cook Strait and South Island, cool comfortable accommodation and great food are highlights.
This self guided tour follows the story of two brothers and a sister who each saw very different sides of World War I. You will need to allow at least 60 minutes.
The best way to get a view of and access the Wairarapa's Tararua and Rimutaka Forest Parks, rivers, gorges, lakes, valleys and remote huts is by air.
*Please note when making a booking - the day you book is your first night with us (arrive anytime after 3pm) - you then walk the next two or three days! For a 3-Night/3-Days Walk, please complete the enquiry form on our website and we will get back to you. The Whareama Coastal Walk is a fantastic 2 or 3 Day walking experience over private farmland and isolated Wairarapa coastline in groups of up to 16 persons.