Free Activities in Mangakino

There are many free activities and things to do in Mangakino including some beautiful walks and scenic bike rides.

Lake Maraetai

Picnic by the lake 

Pack a basket and a bottle of wine for some chill time by the lake. Head on down to Lake Whakamaru or Lake Maraetai as both lakes have excellent picnic spots. Wakeboarding and other water sports are popular here so be prepared to see some action on the lake.

Check out the dams

Park the car and walk over the impressive Whakamaru or Waipapa Dams. Walk up to the abandoned Waipapa Village site above the dam and take in the stunning views across Lake Arapuni or visit the historic dam villages of Whakamaru and Atiamuri.

Mountain Biking & Walk the Waikato River Trails

Walkers and mountain bikers can explore a series of free riverside trails along New Zealand's longest river - the mighty Waikato. The trails cover about 100km of previously inaccessible Southern Waikato land.

They wind their way along a path that encompasses the magic and beauty of New Zealand's native bush, exotic forest, historic landmarks, interesting rock formations and geological delights. The Mangakino/Whakamaru cycleway and walking trails from Waipapa Dam to Atiamuri are open.

The Waikato River Trails and the mountain bike tracks in the Pureora Forest Park offer great rides no matter what your skill level. Be inspired as you walk or cycle through grassed farmland, open reserves, boardwalks over significant wetlands and expansive lake and river views. 

Maraeroa Cycleway

This cycle trail experience is a world first and a must do mountain bike ride which commences at Pa Harakeke at Pureora. It begins at the carved Pou (markers), travels past the Maori Pa, through native bush to Pureora Village, over the Pureora Mountain Trail, descending along the Kokakotaea River, traveling through the old tramway cuttings and over the timber trails before emerging again at Pa Harakeke.  

Pureora Forest Park

Walk through Pureora Forest Park 

Pureora Forest Park straddles the Hauhungaroa and Rangitoto Ranges between Lake Taupo and Te Kuiti. It is a hidden wonderland of tall trees, clear rivers and rare wildlife. Pay a visit to "Pouakani" Totara tree, the largest known Totara in New Zealand which is over 1,500 years old and over 40 metres tall. More information about the features of the Pureora Forest Park. 

Pa Harakeke (Harakeke World)

On the edge of the Pureora Forest, Pa Harakeke is a newly established plantation of Maori Flax and native plants nestled in the shadow of Pureora Mountain beside the Kakaho Stream. Take in the magnificent landscape, breath the crisp fresh air, listen to the rich tunes of the abundant native bird life and enjoy the Pa Harakeke experience.  

Bird watching

The Pureora Forest is one of New Zealand’s finest pod carp rainforests. Climbing the forest tower takes you up into the forest canopy which will get you even closer to the bird life - including the exotic Kokako (blue wattle crow) and the shy Kaka (bush parrot).

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