Cycleways, walkways & bridleways
Kāpiti has an excellent network of cycling, walking and bridleway trails suitable for all ages and levels of fitness. Get out and enjoy the scenery of the Kāpiti Coast with family and friends.
Kāpiti Coastal Cycle Route
25km | Suitable for: cycling, walking
Paekākāriki to Peka Peka
This sign-posted route begins at Ames Street, Paekākāriki and travels north through Queen Elizabeth Park on Te Ara o Whareroa then follows the coast roads north along parts of the Paraparaumu Explorer and Waikanae to Peka Peka Loop.
15km | Suitable for: cycling, walking, horse riding
Ōtaki River to Ōtaki Beach
Follow the banks of the Ōtaki River on this popular walking and mountain biking trail. Walk towards the mountains or walk down to the beach. Horses are also permitted on Ōtaki River trail, with the exception of private land upstream of Chrystalls Lagoon on the northern side of river and Iwi land (Ngāti Huia ki Katihiku) on the southern river bank.
From State Highway 1 to the coast, this trail first passes a working quarry so please take care and follow the signs.
Chrystalls Bend Walkway
2KM | SUITABLE FOR: WALKING, horse riding, wheelchair/pram
Chrystalls Bend Walkway Otaki is a short and easy walk, suitable for all ages, close to both the town and river. The path is flat and gravel for the entire length. It is a tranquil walk with views to the hills of Otaki Gorge and the Chrystalls Lagoon, the path circles around the Lagoon and offers multiple benches to sit and enjoy the view.
This walkway passes through a working quarry, so please take care and supervise children closely. The route is open Monday to Friday 5pm to dusk, Saturday noon to dusk.
Kohekohe Loop Waikanae
1KM | SUITABLE FOR: WALKING
Head to Waikanae and take a wander through one of the largest remaining kohekohe forests in New Zealand. Kohekohe Walk is a well-formed path, suitable for people of all ages and fitness levels, that winds through one of the biggest remaining Kohekohe forests in the country.
The trail starts in Hemi Matenga Memorial Park in Waikanae. It links Tui Crescent to Kakariki Grove. Parking is available on Tui Crescent, near the water reservoir.
9.1km | Suitable for: Walking
Take in spectacular views of Kāpiti Island from high above the Kāpiti Coastline on one of the region’s finest walking experiences.
The Escarpment Track runs from Paekākāriki to Pukerua Bay, taking in sweeping views of the spectacular Kāpiti Coastline and the region’s famous Kāpiti Island.
Wharemauku Stream Paraparaumu
2km | Suitable for: cycling, walking, pram friendly
Paraparaumu, Raumati Beach
An easy path for walkers and cyclists that runs between Paraparaumu Town Centre and Raumati Beach, and connects to the Kāpiti Cycle Route - Expressway shared pathway. You can also connect to Paraparaumu Beach via the fork in the track near the end of the airport runway. Public buses connect Paraparaumu to Raumati Beach and Paraparaumu to Paraparaumu Beach, providing options for your return journey.
Parking is available by the library in Rimu Road.
Queen Elizabeth Park: Te Ara o Whareroa
6km | Accessible. Suitable for: cycling, walking
Paekākāriki - Raumati South
Te Ara o Whareroa is an easy 6km trail that traverses the dunelands of the Kāpiti Coast. The trail extends from Queen Elizabeth Park all the way through to Tilley Road in Paekākāriki. It can be joined from various locations along the way, including from Wellington Road, Whareroa Beach and Raumati South. This popular shared route is used by locals for recreational walking and biking.
Queen Elizabeth Park has an array of trails to suit all types of activity. The Inland track, Whareroa Stream Loop and Yankee Trail are shared pathways for walking, cycling and horseriding.
Kapiti Island - to summit
7.6km | Suitable for: Walking
Authorised operators provide transport and tours of Kapiti Island. The island is a popular destination all year round so bookings for the popular summer season need to be made well in advance. Private boats may not land at Kapiti Island Nature Reserve.
Once you arrive on the Island, the trail to the summit is clearly signposted. You’ll walk to Tuteremoana along a well-formed track with a steady uphill climb, then pass a picnic area and hihi feeding station further along. You’ll encounter Kākā, Kōkako, Takahē and Hihi, meander along scenic trails lined with dense native forest, and take in panoramic views across the Cook Strait and the Wellington region.
Waikanae Beach to Peka Peka Loop
14km | Suitable for: cycling, walking, horse riding
Waikanae Beach via Peka Peka
Park at the beach and follow Kāpiti Coastal Cycle route north to Peka Peka. Join the Kāpiti Cycle Route - Expressway south then follow Te Moana Road and Rauparaha Street back to Waikanae Beach. You can link to the Waikanae River Loop.
Take care on Paetawa and Peka Peka Roads where the footpath ends.
Waikanae River Loop
7.5km | Suitable for: cycling, walking, horse riding
Waikanae to Waikanae Beach via Waikanae River
Park on the north bank of the Waikanae River at the Tutere Street entrance by Waikanae Beach, take the gentle route along the north bank towards the old SH1. Come back towards the beach on the south bank, crossing the footbridge at Otaihanga Domain.
Look out for diverse bird life and swimming spots.
3.5km north of Paekākāriki. From State Highway 1, take the Mackay's Crossing exit to Queen Elizabeth Park.
Pack a picnic and enjoy a day out at this shared recreation reserve near Paekākāriki. It doubles as a working farm and network of walking, mountain biking and horse riding trails through retired pastureland, native bush, and wetlands.
With eight different trails on offer and links to the adjoining Akatarawa Forest and Queen Elizabeth Park, this is the perfect spot to pack a picnic and enjoy a day out in an area of uninterrupted natural beauty.
The mountain biking trails within the park are continually being developed by the Kāpiti Mountain Bike Club. Keys for horse bridleways are available by prior arrangement with the Kāpiti Coast District Council.
Te Horo Bridleways
10-15km | Suitable for: horse riding
North Te Horo - South Te Horo
Extensive beach riding opportunities with mounting blocks provided at the beach end of Peka Peka, Sims and Te Hapua roads. From Te Horo Beach, riders can join the Waikanae to Peka Peka Loop.
Barry Hadfield Nikau Reserve
1.2km | lower loop is ACCESSIBLE. SUITABLE FOR: WALKING
The Barry Hadfield Nīkau Reserve is a shady bush walk through a stunning, large stand of nīkau palms. They line the gravelled track like majestic columns, and there is an easy loop track from the carpark through them which takes only 5- 10 minutes. If you want amazing views, head up the stepped track to panoramic views of the Kāpiti Coast and Kāpiti Island.
The lower loop track through the nīkau is very short, shady and suitable for wheelchairs and buggies. The single track and stairs up to the top are steep, it is suitable for children as it is quite short – but not buggies. The track takes you through 11 acres of remnant nīkau, kohekohe and a good population of ewekuri, the large leaved milk tree (Streblus banksii), a regionally endangered species. You will come across pīwakawaka (fantail), riroriro (grey warbler), and possibly spy tūi, korimako (bellbird) or even kererū. The reserve is across the road from a breeding colony of kawau (little shag) and is an important link in a chain of forest remnants linking the Tararua Ranges to Kāpiti Island. There is a picnic table at the top, and seating to admire the views.
Shared pathway information
- Give way to walkers, use a bell or a friendly greeting when approaching other shared pathway users (especially horses) to let them know you are there
- Be patient behind walkers or slower riders and pull over where practical to let faster riders pass
- Ride only where permitted; keep off closed tracks or private land
- When cycling on the road, follow the road rules. Don't cycle more that two abreast, signal your intentions clearly and stop for red lights and pedestrian crossings
- Keep to the left on shared pathways, try not to walk more than two abreast, especially if the path is busy with cyclists or horse riders
- Be aware of other shared pathway users, and step aside to let other users of faster walkers pass
- Share with care
- Horse riding is allowed on any of the Kāpiti beaches, but restrictions apply to areas near town centres and popular bathing or boat launching areas in summer
- Do not ride along State Highway 1
- Take care using rural road berms
- Tracks are on road berms except beach and expressway
- Please remove manure on shared paths