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Day walks

Karangahake Gorge day walk

  • 2 minutes

Karangahake Gorge, New Zealand

Unforgettable heritage exploration

Find a shared cycle / walking trail through a spectacular gorge with 19th century gold mining tunnels, rusting bush railway tracks and evocative rusting abandoned equipment. To inspire family and friends to join the party check out Visit Karanganhake Gorge & Kaimai Mamaku Conservation Park: Best Bits.

Karangahake Gorge New Zealand
Karangahake Gorge


  • Walking in the footsteps of gold prospectors who hauled the rusting machinery up the gorge
  • Enjoy Owharoa Falls and the swimming hole
  • Tunnels and suspension bridges. The tunnel has permanent lighting and you can view daylight at all times
  • Discover the windows where miners carved tunnels in the hillside with windows to deposit rock waste into the river below. There are over 12 km of mining tunnels, some of these tunnels require a torch

Karangahake Historic Walkway 4 hr, 7 km (return) Offering a pleasant day trip walking alongside the Ohinemuri River, the Historic Walkway connects Karangahake with the impressive rusting and crumbling buildings and machines of the Victoria Battery gold refinery complex, plus the tumbling Owharoa waterfall in its scenic bush setting. There is a café and railway station at Waikino. Please note that this track is shared with cyclists

  • Length: 4.3 km
  • Start/Finish: Waikino Station

Rail Tunnel Loop 1 hr 30 min, 2.5 km (round trip ) A loop walk takes you through the kilometre-long rail tunnel (lighting is provided) along the river’s edge and through the remains of 19th century mine buildings. Please note that sections of this track are shared with cyclists (see Hauraki Rail Trail information below).

  • Length: 2.5 km
  • Start/Finish: Waikino Station

See Department of Conservation brochure for further information and route map.

Historic rail tunnel, a part of an old gold mine transportation system, Karangahake Gorge, New Zealand
Historic rail tunnel
Karangahake Gorge Bridge and Rocky Outcrop, New Zealand
Karangahake Gorge Bridge and Rocky Outcrop


Waikino Station has a large car park. Waikino is approximately 6 km from Waihi township. The Goldfields Vintage Railway occasionally runs trains between the two places. There is a cafe in the station and toilets. Waihi is still a gold mining town with Waihi’s massive Martha Mine operating since 1878. Australian owned OceanGold offers gold mining tours to the current open cast mine.

This walk is part of the Unforgettable Day Walks in New Zealand series.


Best Bits travel guide is published by Owned and managed by PacificJane Ltd.


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