An exquisite lagoon and heritage buildings is a match made in West Coast tourist heaven. The lagoon is home to more than 76 species of native birds including the kōtuku/white heron and royal spoonbills. Okarito is the location for the oldest identified building on the West Coast, Donovan’s Store and the Okarito Memorial Obelisk. Originally a gold mining settlement with an estimated population of 1,500 now there are less than 25 residents.
There is a passionate commitment to the environment and legacy of Okarito among the local residents. The white heron is the birding star of the place together with the extremely rare Okarito kiwi. The lagoon’s bird life is a major drawcard along with the sense of peace, history and sheer beauty of the landscapes.
Short lagoon walks will tempt you to stay awhile.
Okarito Wetland Walk is a 20 minute return walk winding through the bush crossing the estuary on a curving boardwalk. There is a gentle climb to a viewpoint. For more information about Okarito check What’s so great about Okarito.
Duration ½ day to several days
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