Sacred native rainforest, rugged coastline and windswept, black-sand beaches.
The Waitakere Ranges region is one of our natural treasures, rich in native flora and fauna and home to beautiful beaches, magical waterfalls such as Kitekite Falls, Fairy Falls and Karekare Falls, and 250 kilometres of walking tracks.
The ranges are also home to the giants of the forest, the mighty kauri tree. Sadly, the incurable kauri dieback disease is killing kauri in the Waitakere Ranges Regional Park and stronger protection measures are being put in place to prevent the extinction of these ancient and precious trees, including the closure of a number of walking tracks.
Auckland Māori, who are kaitiaki – or guardians – of the ranges have a sacred obligation to protect the environment for future generations, and encourage people to not walk in the ranges so that the forest has time to heal.
If you want to learn more about the ranges and where it’s okay to explore, visit the Arataki Visitor Centre or book a tour through one of the endorsed activity operators.
Bordering the Waitakere Ranges are the west coast’s spectacular black-sand beaches, where you’ll find some of Auckland’s most popular surf spots, great swimming, dramatic landscapes – even a huge clifftop gannet colony.
Start or finish your day with a stroll through Titirangi village at the edge of the ranges for great local cafés and Kiwi art, or visit one of Kumeu’s boutique wineries nearby.