Mount Manaia is one of a cluster of jagged, bush-covered hills that make the area one of the most dramatic harbour entrances in New Zealand.
The track leads you through regenerating native bush to the summit of Mount Manaia, 403 metres above sea level.
Your walk starts with a steady climb, and as the gradient gets steeper, the views get more spectacular with the Bluff lookout offering great views of Bream Head and the Hen and Chicken Islands.
About half-way to the top the track leads you past an impressive stand of large tree ferns; their shed fonds are creating interesting displays in the forest understory.
A climb right to the very top is only for those with a strong head for heights; but once there and even on the upper slopes, the view is as good as being in an aeroplane.
Mount Manaia is located at Taurikura Bay, Whangarei Heads, which lies just east of Whangarei City. You can park in the Manaia Club’s lower car park. The main track begins just above the car park.
Know before you go
- To minimise disturbance to the area, and out of respect to local iwi and their ancestors, keep to the marked track.
- Cliffs/fall hazards present. Supervise children.
- The natural rock lookouts on this track have no safety barriers - take care and stay well away from the drop-offs.
- Northland reserve bylaws apply to Manaia Ridge Scenic Reserve.