Yakas Walk

Track category

Short walk


40 min one way


1.7 km


Kauri trees. Photo: Juliette Pallies.
Kauri trees

The walk leads you through kauri type vegetation for 35 minutes before you arrive at the Cathedral Grove (a large group of kauri). From Cathedral Grove, it is a further 2-minute walk to the Yakas tree.

You return to the car park the way you came.

It is very important that you keep to the walking track at all times. Kauri trees have very sensitive surface roots, and foot traffic around the trees endangers their life span.

View a track location map

About Yakas kauri

Yakas kauri is the 7th largest kauri tree in New Zealand. Nicholas Yakas became witness to many marvels of the Waipoua Forest whilst he was a young man and hot in the pursuit of kauri gum. It wasn’t until 1966 when Yakas was asked if he knew of other kauri trees in the Waipoua Forest that were as big as or larger than Tane Mahuta and Te Matua Ngahere, that he decided to share some of his secrets.

So accompanied by Tudor Collins of Warkworth, (one of New Zealand’s top photographers of native bush scenery of that era), Sir Alfred Reed a publisher and author and a bush-lover, and Mrs Ellen Wech set out and rediscovered the kauri tree.

It was in 1968 when the name 'Yakas Kauri' was officially accepted by the general public when Tudor Collins had one of his coloured photos of the tree published in a full page display in the weekly news of July 29 1968 edition. It was simply captioned 'Yakas' tree and has since stuck.


Trunk girth: 12.29 m
Trunk height: 12.04 m
Total height: 43.09 m
Trunk holume: 134.2 m³

Getting there

The Yakas Walk is sign posted 'Kauri Walks' from State Highway 12, which runs through the Waipoua Forest.

Security is maintained in this car park by a $2.00 donation during the day to the car park ambassador.

From the car park, you will see a sign for the three walks 'Yakas', 'Te Matua Ngahere', and 'Four Sisters'.

A track meanders through native bush and brings you to a central point from which you can access the three walks. From here, Yakas Walk is well sign posted and located directly on the left of this open space. 

Plan and prepare

Help stop kauri dieback

Kauri dieback disease is killing our native kauri. It spreads by soil movement, but you can help prevent it.

  • Stay on the track and off kauri roots.
  • Clean your gear before and after visiting kauri forests.

Visit the kauri dieback website for more information on how you can help.


  • In strong winds, please beware of falling branches.


  • There is no general store, petrol station or supermarket in Waipoua Forest.
  • The nearest petrol station is 28 km south at Kaihu  and 20 km north at Waimamaku.
  • No domestic pets are allowed on this track.
  • Hunting by permit only. You can get a permit free of charge from the Kauri Coast Office.
    Te Tai Kauri / Kauri Coast Office
    Phone:      +64 9 439 3450
    Email:   dargaville@doc.govt.nz
    Full office details

Track location map

Map of Waipoua Forest tracks.

back to top


Find out more


DOC maps: Discover the outdoors - DOC's key places, campsites, tracks and huts, and visitor centres on a map

Learn more

Trounson Kauri Park

Find out more about kauri

Stop the spread of didymo
Check, Clean, Dry
all items before entering, and when moving between, waterways.


Total fire ban

There is a total fire ban within the Kaipara and Whangarei Districts, effective from 1 February 2015 until further notice.

Follow the Outdoor Safety Code

1. Plan your trip
2. Tell someone
3. Be aware of the weather
4. Know your limits
5. Take sufficient supplies

Alerts for Northland places


Te Tai Kauri / Kauri Coast Office
Phone:      +64 9 439 3450
Email:   dargaville@doc.govt.nz
Full office details

Give feedback on a recent visit to a DOC place