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One of the main entrances to Tararua Forest Park, Otaki Forks campsite is surrounded by open river terraces and regenerating bush. Walk and tramp through an area rich in farming, mining and sawmilling history. The river offers swimming, white water kayaking and trout fishing.

Campsite overview


  • Car
  • Motorhome
  • Caravan


  • Forest
  • Rivers and lakes


  • Category


  • Bookings

Bookings not required - first come, first served


  • Toilet - flush
  • Water from stream
  • Wheelchair accessible
150 non-powered/tent sites


  • Fishing
  • Kayaking and canoeing
  • Swimming
  • Walking and tramping

Dog access

Dogs on a leash only

About this campsite

Otaki Forks camping area. Photo: Claudia Hill.
Otaki Forks camping area

Camping areas

School House Flat campsite

This is the main camping area, open all year round, 150 sites.

Schools or large groups can make arrangements to use Schoolhouse flat out of season by calling DOC's Wellington Visitor Centre on +64 4 384 7770

Black Gate campsite

Smaller camping area, 20 sites, open through peak periods and fine weather.

Located 500 m before Schoolhouse Flat.

Getting there

Otaki Forks Schoolhouse Flat camping area. Photo: Wayne Boness.
Otaki Forks Schoolhouse Flat

1 km south of Otaki, turn into Otaki Gorge Rd. Campsite is 19 km east of Otaki township. Narrow gravel access with one stream ford.


NZTM2000 coordinates: E1787182, N5471884
Latitude: -40.88273913, Longitude: 175.22165329


  • Adult (18+ years): $6 per night
  • Child (5 - 17 years): $3 per night
  • Infant (0 - 4 years): free

Pay at the self-registration stand at the campsite.

Know before you go

  • Fires not permitted at any time
  • Bring your own gas BBQ or cooker
  • Campground warden on site all year


Pōneke / Wellington Office
Phone:      +64 4 470 8412
Full office details
Whakaoriori / Masterton Office
Phone:      +64 6 377 0700
Full office details
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