Spanning from the mountains and glacier-fed lakes out to the Pacific Ocean via the mighty braided Waitaki river, many rare seabirds and native marine life make the Waitaki region their home.
A place to explore the geo-wonderland with numerous unique landforms created over time for your enjoyment, discovery and learning today.
Featuring New Zealand’s longest and most varied scenic cycle trail, the Alps 2 Ocean Cycle Trail offers visitors a fully sustainable and carbon zero option to explore the district from mountains to the sea. Additionally, there are numerous hiking and walking trails – leaving you spoilt for choice for recreational pursuits.
The town of Oamaru hosts the popular Blue Penguin colony and the largest colony of Otago Shags can be found located in the picturesque Oamaru harbour.
New Zealand’s longest and most spectacular cycle trail – this is a trail not to be missed. The name says it all; start at Aoraki Mt Cook in the heart of the stunning Southern Alps or the equally beautiful Lake Tekapo Village and wind your way round mountains, deep-blue lakes and canals, then rolling farmland before meeting the Pacific Ocean on the edge of Oamaru Harbour.
Walking Track Time: 2-3hrs (route dependent) No dogs allowed From SH1 in Palmerston, turn onto Tiverton St and carry on down Goodwood Rd until Bushy Hill Rd. Turn left here and almost immediately right onto Anderson Rd. Park up here, climb the stile and make your way past the lagoon
Jetboating with a difference.
These tailormade braided river experiences will have your heart pumping with each turn or will have gazing out at wildlife that is unique to the braided river system. Each trip is tailor-made to your preferences. Choose from an adventure to the Waitaki Hydro-Dam, out toward the Pacific Ocean, or hours sight-seeing and maybe a bit of fishing.
Campbell’s Bay is a great beach for surfing, swimming and having fun in the sun.
This beach is immediately south of the headland in Kakanui and provides a surfable break and a safe swimming beach which is frequented by Hector’s Dolphins who love to play in the surf.
Walking Track Time : 1h one wayDistance : 2kmDog access : no dogs The track edges steep faces within a flooded canyon and is well-formed with some short sections of stairs. Vegetation around track can be tall in spring. The walk finishes at the river delta where a shady picnic or
60 million years in the making – just for your enjoyment. The large hummocky rock formations that look a lot like Elephants were created after fossil-rich limestone deposited millions of years ago eroded, leaving behind an incredible boulder-field which towers above your head.
The dikes seen here are basaltic in nature, and are one of the best inland exposures of igneous dikes in the Ōamaru region and belong to the wider Waiareka Volcanic group. These are located behind the village of Enfield in a disused quarry which has more recently been used as
Kakanui is famous for its stunning sunflowers field. The sunflowers are usually blooming in February – and it’s definitely worth the view! This field has played host to many a photographer and film crew over the years. These sunflowers are grown by Topflite to produce some of their seeds. You
Walking Track Time : 45 minutes return Visitors go to Katiki Point to view the historic Katiki Point Lighthouse (which still operates today), Te Raka a Hineatea Pa site and marine wildlife including Fur Seals and the critically endangered Yellow-Eyed Penguin. Katiki Point offers stunning views over the Pacific Ocean
Walking Track Time : 30 minutes – 1h for the loopDistance : 4.5km of trail The Otematata Wetlands take in some some fantastic spots along the shoreline of lake Aviemore. This is an excellent network of small tracks, trails, picnic areas and swimming spots, making it the perfect place to
Time : 30 minutes – 1h30Distance : 1.5km – 4kmDog access : dogs on a leash only Quailburn Track starts uphill from the historic area, which has a woolshed, sheep dip, homestead and hut ruins dating from 1866. The track winds its way uphill through mountain beech forest with several
Shag Point/Matakaea Reserve is a great spot for wildlife viewing and is part of a geologically curios and intriguing coastline. New Zealand fur seals can normally be seen in good numbers on the rock selves around Shag Point. There are two short seal-viewing walks where visitors can watch the seals
Walking Track Distance: approx. 9km (full loop) Running between Takaro Park and the Lookout Point, the two-kilometre South Hill Walkway takes you through Oamaru’s historic precinct with the option to make a detour to Oamaru Blue Penguin Colony. From the Lookout Point the views of the town and ocean are
Walking Track Time : Approximately 1 hour No dogs allowed From SH1 in Palmerston, turn onto Tiverton St and carry on down onto Goodwood Rd. Wind your way along Goodwood Rd, until Bobby’s Head Rd, where you’ll find parking for Tavora Reserve. This reserve is managed by the Yellow Eyed Penguin
Take a tour of our small dairy farm and taste milk like it should be. Start your tour with a gumboot fitting, and then a walk through our native plantings. The farm owner will talk about this ethical dairy and answer any questions you may have about The Natural Dairy, or about the wider dairy industry.
Local businesses in the Waitaki have prepared their best deals so you can explore our beautiful region with your friends and family
this season at the best price!