Itinerary N11

From Kohukohu to the West Coast and the North side of the Harbour

This trip starts at Kohukohu or the northern Ferry terminal.

Travel west along West Coast Road, past the remains of the Motukaraka Dairy factory and follow the road to Panguru. This small village was badly affected by a torrential cloud burst in the hills behind in 2002 and several buildings, including the school, had to be rebuilt.

Continue west until you meet the coast. Watch out for horses. At Mitimiti there is a very well kept school, beyond which you will find access to one of the wildest beaches in New Zealand. The locals gather shellfish, particularly mussels from the rocks. Horse treks and 4-wheel drive adventures are available – contact Sally or Tipo at Mitimiti Beach House, telephone 09 409 5347, or email mitimiti@xtra.co.nz for bookings.

This sort of wild coast, even on the rare calm day, will blow away any cobwebs. Even a walk along the beach is exhilarating.

Head back the way you came in and look out for Windy Ridge Road on your right. Follow this and turn right as you get close to the harbour. The road takes you in and out of tidal inlets until you reach the Ripeka Tapu church and Marae at Rangi Point and ends atWaitapu where there is an all tide landing, which the locals use for communicating with the communities on the south side.

The way back is the way you came in.