Additional options may include walking along the coast to the Gap or a 20 minute bush walk to Kitekite falls depending on time.
This Day Tour to Auckland's West Coast is designed for people who not only want to see and photograph the best of Auckland's Wild West Coast and Waitakere Ranges but to walk through some of the finest Kauri Stands in the world and experience the raw power, famous surf and isolation of some of NZ's most iconic beaches. We have the time and flexibility to explore the Coast and bush and appreciate the scenery without rushing.
Whether you're a keen photographer or you just want to experience the grandeur of the Waitakere Ranges and the character of Auckland's West Coast this tour is for you.
Your guides will not only share some of the Maori and Early European history; medicinal use of various plants but you can use their photographic experience as much or little as you like.
The tour starts with a stop at the Arataki Visitor Centre, perched high on the ridge line there are epic views of both coasts. The centre also has some great displays of the areas Fauna and Flora and early settler's lifestyle.
Next we head out to the coast, the first stop is the sparsely populated Karekare beach site of Jane Campions film "The Piano" here we walk to the beautiful Waitakere Falls and then out on to the huge expanse of Karekare beach, wild and foreboding one day sunny and fun the next Karekare has a unique and special character. Over the hill is Piha with iconic Lion Rock, you may choose to walk around the coast to "The Gap" to see the ocean thundering through a gap in the cliffs or do a 20 minute walk through lovely regenerating bush to the Kitekite falls or both if you're feeling fit or you may just prefer to paddle in the waves and soak up some salt air the choice is yours.
Our next stop is the Piha Cafe to enjoy a range of wholesome food with the locals. Time to replenish ourselves and take in the eclectic surroundings.
Continuing our journey through the Waitakere Ranges, we next stop at the Cascade Kauri Park to see some magnificent trees over 1000 years old in an area of fully protected ancient rainforest. From here we pop out the other side of the Waitakere's and head back into the city arriving back around 4.30pm.
Our West Coast tour heads out West and through Titirangi, a lovely village situated in the Waitakere Foothills above the Manukau Harbour. The area had a reputation for bohemianism's and is still a hot spot for artists of all kinds. Many well-known painters, photographers, musicians, writers and poets have called Titirangi home including one of our most famous artists Colin McCahon whose house is now a museum. The villages relaxed atmosphere and cafe culture set the scene for our trip as we enter the Waitakere Ranges via the aptly named Scenic Drive.
Situated high on the Waitakere ridge the Visitor Centre is the gateway to the Waitakere Ranges and has magnificent views of both harbours, some stunning Maori carvings and lots of interactive displays showing some of the culture and history of the Ranges.
For history and character Karekare is hard to beat. Whether you want to stroll along the beach or explore the local caves, waterfalls, viewpoints, pohutakawa glades, old railway tunnels, remnants of the early European logging era it's all here. The photo opportunities are endless and your guides can point out some of the best spots.
We drive to Piha lookout for some awesome views over one of NZ's most iconic beaches. Birthplace of NZ board riding in the 1950's Piha is a popular destination and we get a grand view over Lion Rock and right down the coast. We also have time to walk around the Coast to the Gap to see the sea thundering in. Depending on time you may want to walk up to the Kitekite falls as well. Piha is also the site for our lunch stop at the Iconic Piha Café.
This is a chance to see a pristine part of the Waitakere rainforest, see what a lot of NZ looked like thousands of years ago. We walk a track around 1.5km in length through the middle of the bush seeing huge trees including; Kauri's, Rimu's, Rata, Kahikatea, and Totara to name just a few. If you feel you've walked enough there are lots of shorter walks from five minutes and up. It's also a great chance to admire the many ferns and our iconic silver fern.
Child (2 - 11 Years): $125.00
Includes lunch and morning tea.
No minimum numbers.
Pick up will be from your Central Auckland Hotel at or before 9.00a.m.
7.5 hours approximately, return to the City approximately 4.30p.m.
Tour departs every day except Sunday subject to availability.
No minimum numbers.
Lunch and morning tea.
We do have some raincoats and supply morning and afternoon tea however you should bring drinking water, walking shoes, suntan lotion and warm clothes as the temperature especially in the rainforest can be unpredictable.
The tracks are all in good condition although a moderate level of fitness is required. The longest walks are approximately one hour long.
The NZ bush is largely free of any animals that will harm you but if you are allergic to bee stings or insect bites please let your driver or guide know. Your driver and guide have First aid training and a comprehensive medical kit is carried at all times.
Our vans are modern and comfortable with air conditioning; we are fully licenced to operate in the Waitakere Ranges and a portion from each passenger goes to preserving the Ranges for everyone. We have all the necessary licences from the NZTA to operate a Tour business with passenger enjoyment and safety being our prime objective.