Pirongia: Kaniwhaniwha walking tracks

Track category

Walking track
Mountain bike - Easy


These tracks are accessed from Limeworks Loop Rd and are suitable for family outings, although the tramping track to the kahikatea tree may be too long for very young children.

Nikau Walk  

Time: 2 hr 30 min return (walking)

The track starts from the Kaniwhaniwha car park through a recently planted area. It follows along the stream to a loop walk through beautiful native forest with abundant nikau palms and tree ferns.

There are opportunities for swimming and picnicking along the stream, and a picnic/campsite with toilets is a short distance off the track (this is accesible by wheelchair, but the loop track is not).

This walk can be combined with the Kaniwhaniwha Caves adding 30 min to the walking time.
Coming out of the Kaniwhaniwha Caves. Photo: Adrienne Grant.
It pays to be small coming out of the
Kaniwhaniwha Caves

Mountain biking

The Nikau Walk is ideal for family cycling. Please follow the directional signs around the Loop Track. The track is shared with walkers.

This is a shared-use track. Follow the mountain bikers code: respect others, respect the rules, respect the track.

Kaniwhaniwha Caves

Time: 2 hr 30 min return (walking)

The two limestone caves are near the start of the Bell Track, 5 mins from the Nikau Walk junction. You can walk through the 20 m long main cave, except for a short hands-and-knees crawl. The cave is wet underfoot and torches are required. The second smaller cave is tight and narrow.

Nikau Walk

Getting there

From Hamilton take SH23 to Whatawhata. Turn left onto Te Pahu Rd after the bridge over the Waipa River. Limeworks Loop Rd is about 10.6km on the right.


Child/family friendly activities Child/family friendly activities
Mountain biking and cycling Mountain biking and cycling
Swimming Swimming

Child/family friendly activities

Child friendly walk with nice areas for picnics and swimming in the stream.

Mountain biking and cycling

Track description


The Nikau Walk has opportunities for swimming in the stream.

Plan and prepare

Many of Pirongia’s tracks can be muddy, especially after rain.

Weather conditions can change rapidly, especially at higher altitudes. Always carry a change of clothing, wet weather gear and sufficient food to cater for any emergency. 

Before you go into the outdoors, tell someone your plans and leave a date to raise the alarm if you haven't returned. To do this, use the New Zealand Outdoors Intentions process on the AdventureSmart website. It is endorsed by New Zealand's search and rescue agencies and provides three simple options to tell someone you trust the details about your trip.

Please note: dogs are prohibited from all Waikato area tracks except for certified guide dogs and permitted hunting dogs.

Related link

Pirongia and Raglan tracks brochure (PDF, 4,780K)


Find out more


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


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 Waikato places


Te Rapa Base
Phone:      +64 7 858 1000
Email:   waikato@doc.govt.nz
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