Lake Waikaremoana area
Located in Te Urewera in the East Coast region
IntroductionLake Waikaremoana is a marvellous destination for walkers. Besides the famous Lake Waikaremoana Great Walk there are many short and day walks to the caves, springs, waterfalls and rainforest of the Tūhoe homeland.
Te Urewera is recognised in New Zealand law as a living person. Te Urewera is spoken for and governed by a board. Care for Te Urewera, including the tracks and facilities, is carried out by Te Uru Taumatua – Ngāi Tūhoe’s operational entity.
Find things to do and places to stay Lake Waikaremoana area
Water-based activities are popular on Lake Waikaremoana and most craft are permitted. Jet skis, house boats and float planes are not allowed.
Carry approved safety equipment and a local chart of the lake. Observe water safety regulations.
Conditions on the lake can change rapidly.
Brown and rainbow trout are found in Lake Waikaremoana. Fishing licenses can be bought from Fish & Game New Zealand and from the Waikaremoana Holiday Park store.
Waikaremoana can be approached from two directions on SH38 which runs from Waiotapu in the north to Wairoa on the East Coast. SH38 passes Te Karetu where Te Urewera Visitor Centre (Te Kura Whenua) and the Waikaremoana Holiday Park are located.
The highway is a gravel surface for about 90 km between Murupara (north of Te Karetu and Tuai (south of Te Karetu). This may be difficult for lower vehicles and 4WD/SUV is recommended.
On Google Maps, enter Waikaremoana Holiday Park to get to both the Waikaremoana Holiday Park and Te Urewera Visitor Centre at Te Kura Whenua.
Parking space is available at:
- Waikaremoana Holiday Park
- Near the lake side – up to 10 days free parking
- Onepoto at the Great Walk trail-end car park, and near the boat ramp
- Hopuruahine Landing at the Great Walk trail-end car park, 2 km off the main road
- Āniwaniwa near the old visitor centre site – from here you can follow the Black Beech track to the Te Urewera Visitor Centre, approximately 20 mins walk.
Extreme weather changes are a feature of the area, including snow in summer. Te Urewera is a rainforest and so tracks can be muddy.
Make sure you are properly equipped and well prepared. Your safety is your responsibility. Know the five essential steps of the Land Safety Code.
Call in at the Te Urewera Visitor Centre at Te Kura Whenua for the latest information on weather and track conditions. Check opening hours.
How to be a good manuhiri
Te Urewera is a taonga and everyone has a responsibility to care for her. All manuhiri (visitors) to Te Urewera are asked to respect Tikanga of the Lake and help us all to guardians of this place.
To the Tūhoe people, Te Urewera is not just their homeland, but also the mother of their first ancestors.
The Care for Nature (Manaakitanga Te Urewera) principles help visitors experience Te Urewera and the Lake Waikaremoana Great Walk in a way that accords with her needs, and helps us all to build our connection to nature.
That means embracing experiences in nature that are beautiful and child-friendly, and caring for our wildlife and environment.
- Camping is only in approved camping areas and huts. This includes the lakeshore.
- There are no rubbish facilities, so pack-in/pack-out – take anything you bring in to Te Urewera out again, avoid single use plastic and don’t litter.
- All native wildlife in Te Urewera is protected. Native plants and animals must not be disturbed, destroyed or removed. The bush is a taonga, a treasure for all.
- To protect ground-dwelling birds, no dogs or other domestic animals are permitted on the track.
- Fire is a major threat. Fires can be used for cooking or warmth, unless there is a temporary fire ban, however, a portable stove is a better option.
- If you are hunting - use firearms carefully. Always identify your target. Unload your firearm and remove the bolt before entering huts, and store ammunition and bolts separately from the firearm.
- Hunting is by permit only.
If you have questions about how best to respect Te Urewera, call in to Te Urewera Visitor Centre at Te Kura Whenua and speak to one of the team.
|Te Urewera Centre|
|Phone:||06 837 3900|
Te Kura Whenua
6249 Lake Road/SH38
Kaitawa DOC Mailshed
|Full office details|