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Auckland Day Trip to Kaipara Harbour

@Kumeu Market
@Kumeu Market
Helensville heritage visitor centre, Auckland, New Zealand
Helensville heritage visitor centre, Auckland, NZ
Riverside Walkway & Helensville Post Off...
Geothermal Hot Pools
Kaipara Coast Sculpture Gardens, female figure, Auckland, New Zealand
Kaipara Coast Sculpture Gardens, Auckland, NZ
Kaipara Coast Sculpture Gardens

Imagine a geothermal hot pool experience as a reward for fish n chips on the beach. Places to go include the imaginative garden centre Kaipara Coast Gardens with its sculpture trail and newly constructed Conservation trail. Take a quick peek at Helensville, the location for the TV Series ‘BrokenWood.’

Trip Overview

Attractions & Places to Go

Kaipara Harbour Highlights:

  • Helensville ‘BrokenWood’ TV series location, heritage post office
  • Helensville River walk
  • Kaipara Coast Sculpture Gardens (3 hours) walking trail
  • Shelly Bay fish n chips on the beach watching boaties, water bombing from the jetty
  • Parakai Palm Springs geothermal hot pools – blissful few hours

Duration: Day trip
Start Auckland
Finish Auckland

For other trips and holiday inspiration check out Auckland Road Trips.


You are following the trails of pre-European Maori, timber merchants seeking kauri trees (tall straight ancient dense wood suitable for sailing ship spars) and settlers seeking land for farming.

The now quiet Kaipara Harbour and trails of the Kauri Coast are a fascinating glimpse into patterns of human occupation in Aotearoa New Zealand.

Helensville Auckland heritage riverbank walk, Auckland, New Zealand
Helensville Auckland heritage riverbank walk

Helensville Riverside Walkway One km of easy walking starting from the main entry / exit at Creek Lane – the hub of Helensville. This walkway takes you on a narrow band between the Kaipara river and the rail line. Sign boards explaining the history of the river are displayed along the walkway to help you relate what you are seeing to the historic timber trade of times gone by.

More about Helensville


Want a fresh contemporary hot pool experience in Parakai, Kaipara Harbour?

RECOMMENDED: Palm Springs Geothermal Pools. Palm Springs Geothermal Pools are a great alternative for couples or visitors looking for an up to date thermal pool experience.

There are three pools ranging from 34°C to 42°C. Temperature might change depending on season.

  • Lower Pool: 34°C – 36°C
  • Upper Pool: 38°C – 40°C
  • Rock (Spa) Pool: 40°C – 42°C

Opening Hours:

  • Monday: 10am – 9pm
  • Tuesday: Closed
  • Wednesday: 10am – 9pm
  • Thursday: 10am – 9pm
  • Friday: 10am – 9pm
  • Saturday: 10am – 9pm
  • Sunday: 3pm – 9pm​

Public Holidays: 10am – 9pm

(Dates for closures will be notices 2 weeks prior to closing date)



A highlight of the day trip and a superb reason for art lovers, culture buffs to check out local artists in an attractive garden setting.


While relaxing watching the world go by you could consider whether you have the energy to:

  • Go skydiving at the nearby Parakai Airfield
  • Tree ziplining in the nearby Woodend Forest
  • Take a harbour cruise of the Kaipara Harbour
  • Visit the award winning Matakohe Kauri Museum and check out an outstanding heritage rose garden nestled against a Victorian church
  • Stay a few days longer
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