Red Rocks from Owhiro Bay - Wellington City
Updated: Jan 24
Friday 21st January 2022
Location: Owhiro Bay Parade, Owhiro Bay, Wellington 6023
The Owhiro Bay to Red Rocks coastal walk is a Wellington staple. The scenery is dramatic, the track's great for walking and the exciting destination keeps little legs going.
From the car park the walk follows a 4WD track west along the coast. The track is exposed so make sure you have the right gear. Also, you have to cross a few streams. We had one accidental wet foot and a not so accidental one. We hadn’t packed for wet feet so luckily we were on the way back.
The track follows the coastline for about 3km running just above the beach. While the water looks inviting the coast is quite rugged so pick your spot with a bit of care if the kids are going to dip their toes in.
When the kids started asking “are we there yet?”, the response was “you’ll know when we’re there”. “How will we know?”, “the rocks will be red”…
Once at the red rocks you can choose to go one more bay to the seal colony. We did and despite an extensive search operation all over the rocks at Sinclair Head not a single seal could be find (an alive one that is, there was a very smelly dead one which was not accepted as a legitimate ‘seal sighting’).
You can follow the beach track all the way around to the back of Karori if you’re game. It looks like it’d be about 10km around to the Karori golf club. We’re not sure how well signposted the track is though so you’d need to keep an eye out.
You wander back the same way when you’re ready and eventually hit the carpark again. Ice creams were a bit of a drive from there as we couldn’t find anything in Owhiro Bay.
Age of Kids: 7yr and 9yr
Walking Time: 2-3 hours return
Buggy friendly: Not really. You could but there are lots of sandy spots and loose rocks. I’d go for the front pack over a buggy here
Difficulty: Easy but sandy and is exposed.
Wet Feet: Can be avoided
Amenities: Te Kopahou Visitor Centre is at the start of the track in Owhiro Bay. It has a toilet and a number of interesting things to look at
Dogs: The sign says they should be on a leash for the sake of the wildlife. We left our boy at home thinking it would be annoying with all the distractions but would definitely take him next time
Cell Reception: we had two phones with us. 2degrees was quite patchy but Spark us strong all the way round to the Head
Be Aware: The tracks at the top are used for mountain biking so you need to be extra careful. We were surprised at how many cars drove past, they all drove slowly but we needed to keep an eye out