History of Maungauika/North Head
IntroductionFind out about the history of Maungauika/North Head Historic Reserve.
DOC no longer administers the reserve
Ownership of Maungauika/North Head Historic Reserve has transferred to Ngā Mana Whenua o Tāmaki Makaurau (the Tāmaki Collective) as part of Treaty Settlement negotiations.
The Tūpuna Maunga Authority administers the reserve on behalf of the Collective.
Maungauika/North Head is a small strategic headland at the mouth of Auckland's Waitemata Harbour. Its commanding views over the Hauraki Gulf and inner harbour have made it an important lookout and defence site for centuries, first for early Maori inhabitants and later for European settlers.
The maunga/mountain was the site of one of a number of defence forts that were rapidly set up in the late 1800s to defend Auckland from a feared Russian attack. The fort was later expanded as part of Auckland's coastal defence system during World Wars I and II.
A complex of tunnels, guns, searchlights and other fortifications make this a fascinating area to explore. It is now a historic reserve managed by the Department of Conservation.
North Head (named Maungauika by Maori) is a taonga with many special places. The tangata whenua have a spiritual, cultural and historical relationship with their taonga.