Section 27 Coast to Coast Walk, Auckland
16km – takes approximately 4 hours.
The Coast to Coast Walk starts at the Viaduct Harbour, Downtown Auckland and ends at Onehunga Bay Reserve in Onehunga but it sounds more impressive to say that it starts on the Pacific Ocean and traverses the city of Auckland until you reach the Tasman Sea. The walkway is part of Te Araroa – The Long Pathway which is a continuous 3000km walking track that stretches the length of New Zealand from Cape Reinga to Bluff.
The Coast to Coast Walk is one of the more urban sections of Te Araroa you won’t find yourself bush whacking through overgrown paths. What you will find is one of the benefits Te Araroa has over other worldwide long trails; the connection with the local people of Auckland. The Auckland isthmus between the Waitemata Harbour and the Manukau Harbour is New Zealand’s narrowest neck of land yet it packs a punch with interesting sights and panoramic views.
Starting at the Viaduct Harbour we headed off early in the morning with the aim of giving ourselves time in case we decided to walk back too. Ambitious yeah? Passing a couple of young twenty somethings who were still out on the town we then strolled by the beautiful Edwardian Baroque ferry terminal that has operated since 1912 before racing pass the veradahed villas of Princes St towards Auckland University and Albert Park.
The Coast to Coast Walk passes five volcanic sites with Albert Park being the first. Today it is barely recognisable as a volcano and more known as a well maintained Victorian Park that’s mostly used by Aucklanders for small festivals and outdoor summer concerts.
Heading across to the picturesque parklands of the Domain we then walk around the back of Auckland Hospital before passing New Zealand’s largest boys school, Auckland Grammar. Traipsing up Mt Eden’s (Maungawhau) 196m height we pass slopes that were once densely populated by Maori but are now cherished grasslands of Aucklanders relaxing and exercising in the weekend. Reaching the summit there is a perfect, deep crater and it was definitely time for a pit stop to take in the outstanding, sweeping views of Auckland. This is the best place in Auckland if you’re looking for a first-rate spot for a romantic sunset or two!
Back on the walkway we go descend Mt Eden and cross through prestigious Epsom to Cornwall Park and One Tree Hill (Maungakiekie). One Tree Hill has three craters, two breached and one intact and was gifted to the people of New Zealand in 1901 by one of New Zealand’s first European settlers Sir John Logan Campbell. He is buried at the summit of One Tree Hill with the fitting Latin inscription of “si monumentum requiris circumspice” which translates as “if you want a memorial, look about you”. I love that! The Coast to Coast walk also goes by Acacia Cottage which was the home of Sir Campbell and built in 1841 it is Auckland’s oldest wooden house and is worth a quick squiz.
Winding down from One Tree Hill we amble through Royal Oak, following the yellow arrows through surburban streets until we reach the end goal of Onehunga Bay Reserve. Onehunga Bay Reserve is a slightly underwhelming finish to this impressive section of Te Araroa. The Coast to Coast Walk detours you through some of the best Auckland has to offer and was an enjoyable, relatively easy stroll. Perfect for a Sunday.
Did we walk back? Nah. We took the bus!
You can easily catch the bus back to Britomart from the Onehunga village shops.
There are yellow arrows marking the Coast to Coast walkway but it is best to take a map. We made several wrong turns!
I have written about several other sections of Te Araroa please check them out here and put your email in the subscription box on the right hand column so you find out when I’ve done more!
More information can be found here: