Godley Head loop track, Godley Head to Taylors Mistake walk

Image: DOC


This walk features a beach, coastal views and WWII remains – plenty to keep children interested.

Track overview

Walking and tramping

3 hr Easy: Walking track

Mountain biking

Intermediate: Grade 3

Dog access

Dogs on a leash only

About this track


From the Taylors Mistake carpark make your way behind the beach to the start of the Pilgrims Way Coastal Track. The track offers views of places where old cave dwellings used to be built into the hillside, as well as views down to the rocks and sea below.

Passing Boulder Bay, the track climbs up to the headland and the historic Godley Head coastal defence battery. It passes two of the first gun platforms to reach the Godley Battery Compound. The gun emplacements feature interpretative graffiti which celebrates the role of the Women's Auxiliary Army Corp in running the place during WWII and the underground magazine.

From here the Godley Head Gun Emplacements Track carries on around the nose of the headland, past the historic military buildings including the Battery Observation posts located at the entrance to Lyttelton Harbour. Good views of the city and coastline south can be had from the headland. There are toilets at the car park at Godley Head.

From there the Breeze Col Loop Track climbs high above Breeze Bay, offering sweeping views of Lyttelton Harbour and Banks Peninsula, until it drops back down to Breeze Col.

Follow the Black Rock track down for 20 minutes to the Pilgrims Way Coastal Track. Turn left there to walk back to Taylors Mistake Beach and car park.

You can stay overnight at the Godley Head Campsite

Scott's Cabin

Take the short easy walk to visit the historic Scott's Cabin with fantastic views.

Accessed from the historic military compound on Godley Head which has a fascinating collection of buildings and bunkers, this small hut on Godley Head has ties to Scott’s failed Antarctic Terra Nova expedition of 1910-1913.

While the inside is not open to the public, you can walk on the viewing platform on the roof or peer in through the windows to see the interior. There is interpretation on site about the history of the Cabin.

Mountain biking

Mountain biking is possible from the Taylors Mistake car park up the Anaconda Track to Breeze Col. You can also mountain bike on the track below the Summit Road from Breeze Col to the Godley Head car park and toilets.

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

Getting there

From the centre of town, it's a 30-minute drive to the coastal suburb of Sumner. From Sumner, it's another 10-minute drive to Taylors Mistake.

Public transport is available as far as Sumner. 

The area can be accessed from Lyttelton via Evans Pass and the Summit Road to Godley Head.

Alternatively, start from the car park at the Godley Head end of the Summit Road from Evans Pass, 50 minutes drive from the centre of Christchurch.

The sealed road is narrow, has sharp corners and steep drops off the sides.

Know before you go

  • There are steep, unfenced cliffs - keep children under close supervision at all times.
  • There are toilets at Godley Head car park and at Taylors Mistake.
  • The sealed road is narrow, has sharp corners and steep drops off the sides. Drive with care.
  • The Summit Road to Godley Head is popular with cyclists. Keep left, reduce speed and keep a lookout for oncoming cyclists.

All drone use must be authorised by DOC

A concession is required to fly a drone on any public conservation land.


Ōtautahi / Christchurch Visitor Centre
Phone:   +64 3 379 4082
Fax:   +64 4 471 1117
Email:   christchurchvc@doc.govt.nz
Address:   31 Nga Mahi Road, Sockburn
Christchurch 8042
Postal Address:   Private Bag 11089
Christchurch 8042
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