Te Apiti – Manawatu Gorge Track

Time: 3-5 hrs  |  Distance: 11.2km  |  Fitness level: moderate

Home of native fauna, birdlife, and captures the beauty of the awe-inspiring Te Apiti - Manawatu Gorge - New Zealand. 


A must-do walk on your New Zealand journey, Te Apiti - Manawatu Gorge is an icon and the divider of the Manawatu and Hawke's Bay regions. Nestled between two mountain ranges, there are few places in New Zealand where within 12 minutes from a major city you can enjoy one of our country’s most iconic natural playgrounds. Covered in ancient bush and home to a variety of wildlife, Te Apiti – Manawatu Gorge is steeped in legend and has many stories to tell. Explore the walking tracks and you’ll come face to face with the sculpture of Whatonga, an ancient warrior who stands guard over the forest.

The main walking track is 11.2km in length and takes you high above the river and Gorge below. Winding your way through native bush, the birdsong of Tui's, Bellbird's and more give a beautiful soundtrack to enjoy. Along the route there are five viewpoints that allow you to tower above the trees and glimpse the beauty of the gorge from above. From the river to the railway, the reserves, and Manawatu’s iconic wind farms, you will be able to see all Te Apiti has to offer.

For those in the know, the best way to finish this walk is with a cold cider or milkshake and some tasty local food at the gorgeous Bridge Cafe

A shorter 4 km loop option is available at the Ashhurst end of the track. See the Manawatu Gorge Tawa Loop Walk page for more information.

Please note that car parking at the Upper Gorge Bridge is limited. People should also be made aware that the car park is on the opposite side of the road to the track entrance, but an underpass allows people to get across safely.


Please note this is a one way track and you will need to:

- Place a car at the starting entrance and another at the end exit before heading out, in order to drive back to the entrance upon completion.

- Or arrange to be dropped off and picked up from the other side.

- Or arrange pick up from local shuttle providers through the Palmerston North City i-SITE, freephone 0800 626 292.


Outdoor Safety Code:
1. Plan your trip
2. Tell someone
3. Be aware of the weather
4. Know your limits
5. Take sufficient supplies

For more information visit Adventure Smart

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Physical address
Manawatu Gorge
New Zealand

Facilities and Features
Car Parking
Picnic Tables