Whangarei Falls - Otuihau

About this image

Crossign the stream at Whangarei Falls - Otuihau

One of Whangarei’s best loved and well known landmarks, the beautiful Whangarei Falls​ - Otuihau.

The picturesque waterfall is 26.3m high and falls over basalt cliffs. The two viewing platforms above the waterfall give spectacular views of the falls and a birds eye view of the forest below. There are a choice of lovely picnic area in the many green spaces.

The walk loops around the waterfall, down one side, crosses a footbridge at the bottom and back up the other side. It has well maintained tracks and is suitable for all ages although both sides of this circular track do zig zag down steep slopes to the lower bridge.

The walk is the uppermost section of the complete Hatea River walk and accesses AH Reed Memorial Park which features 500 year old kauri trees.

Enjoy the sights, sounds and smells of native New Zealand bush. Trees you will see include nikau palms, totara, manuka, to kouka (cabbage tree) and ponga (tree fern). Birds that you may see and hear include kukupa (native wood pigeon), tui and riroriro (grey warbler).

Traditionally this area was a good eeling (fishing) spot for local Maori and the grassy slopes have always been a popular picnic spot.

The base of the falls may once have been tapu (sacred) as the pools below the waterfall were once used for washing the wounded and was known to Maori as an area of healing.

In the late 1920’s, Mr Archibald Clapham bought the property, reputedly to prevent the waterfall being developed as a commercial watermill. In 1946 a local businessmen’s association raised the purchase price by public subscription and the property was vested as a public domain in 1958.

Loop walk 1 km 30minutes.

View or download the Whangarei Central Walks brochure [2.4MB] and other Whangarei Maps and Guides.

Find out about other waterfalls in the district.

Boundary Road,
Tikipunga, Whangarei, Northland

View on Google Maps