Manganuku bridge (now closed) is one of the few remaining historic Howe truss bridges

Image: Roy and Bernice Vannini | ©


The Waioeka Gorge has spectacular bush and river views and provides excellent opportunities for hunting, tramping, picnics, swimming, canoeing, rafting and fishing.

Place overview


  • Camping
  • Hunting
  • Scenic driving
  • Walking and tramping

In this section

Find things to do and places to stay Waioeka Gorge Scenic Reserve

About this place

Nature and conservation

The gorge cuts through ranges of steep-sided hills rising from 400 metres near the coast to 1000 metres inland. The hard yet brittle greywacke has been showered with volcanic ash and pumice over thousands of years. Vegetation includes canopies of tawa, rimu, miro, totara and nikau palms, together with cover of fern, manuka and kanuka

Retired farmland has progressively been added to the Waioeka Gorge Scenic Reserve and is regenerating at a fast rate. The regeneration of the land goes through many rapid changes, from pasture grass to fern, and then invasion of fern by broadleaved hardwood and softwood shrubs. Illustration of these stages can be clearly seen throughout the Gorge.

History and culture

Since the late 1890s attempts were made to farm this area with limited success. Depressions, falling prices for sheep, wool, and cattle, and increasing erosion forced many families to abandon the farms.

Getting there

Waioeka Gorge Scenic Reserve is on SH2 between Opotiki and Gisborne.


Opotiki Office
Phone:   +64 7 315 1001
Fax:   +64 4 471 1117
Address:   70 Bridge Street
Postal Address:   PO Box 326
Opotiki 3162
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