Three water­fall walks in Bay of Plenty

Walking New Zealand - - New Zealand Walks -

There is a large carpark here with dis­play boards giv­ing in­fo­ma­tion on the var­i­ous walk­ing tracks and points of in­ter­est that can be found in this area.

There are seven Pa sites within the re­serve where ter­rac­ing can be seen. Huge pine trees have re­cently been cut, tak­ing away some shelter, but it is even nicer to walk the new track, be­cause there are coastal views all the way up to the trig at 224 me­ters.

Over 50,000 na­tive plants have been planted here in re­cent years adding to

the at­trac­tion. After sit­ting en­joy­ing the view we re­turned on a loop track over farm­land, giv­ing awe­some views over Pa­pamoa and Mt Maun ganui.

Back at the carpark at 1.00pm we drove an­other 15 min­utes, up Wel­come Bay Road, to Waitao Road, where clear signs show the way to Ka­iate Falls. Th­ese are some of the pret­ti­est falls you will ever find.

The trail starts be­side the top of the falls, and leads down a se­ries of steps –quite steep in parts – to the base of the third drop. Th­ese three falls, cas­cad­ing down a nar­row canyon, are just stun­ning, and a per­fect photo spot.

The trail then con­tin­ues over a lit­tle bridge and down more steps to a lower fall plung­ing into a round bowl. It’s of­ten quite chilly down here, but lo­cal kids still leap off the cliff face to the plunge pool be­low.

The re­turn walk is a loop, con­tin­u­ing down be­side the stream, then over an­other bridge, be­fore tack­ling lots of steps back up to the carpark.

It’s an in­cred­i­bly beau­ti­ful walk – about an hour re­turn.

So – an awe­some day. three walks, all dif­fer­ent, all very pretty and all in our own back­yard. I would highly rec­om­mend it if you’re in the Bay.

Above left: The top falls at Ka­iate. Above right: Ad­mir­ing the Ka­iate Falls. Mid­dle left: The bridge be­low the falls. Be­low left: At the top be­side the trig. Be­low right: The swim­ming hole at Ra­para­pa­hoe Falls.

Above right: Be­low the Ka­iate Falls. Mid­dle right: The lower falls.

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