The Pūrākaunui Falls is one of Otago’s iconic, most-photographed sights. The track through mature forest is suitable for wheelchair users to the top viewing platform.
These much photographed falls split into many minor cascades over two tiers. The wide bluff is framed with vegetation , making a picturesque setting.
10 km east of Maclennan, Purakanui Falls are signposted to the right along Waikoata Valley Road (unsealed). After 4 km turn left into Purakanui Falls Road and the start of the track is 200 metres further on, opposite a large parking bay with toilets and picnic benches.
The metalled track weaves through a mixed forest of silver beech and podocarps, with some species highlighted by labels.
A lookout above the falls doesn’t really do them justice. It’s only when you descend to the viewing platform at stream level that they come into their own.
South Island ▷ Southland ▷ Owaka
Showing 13 reviews of 40.
Nicole and Timm
Probably the most beautiful waterfall we have seen in the South Island. Nice and easy to walk there.
Nice, but we have seen a lot of waterfalls in our time in New Zealand and this one is far from the best.
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Gorgeous waterfalls with different tiers. A nice short walk to a viewpoint.
The perfect place to enjoy a picnic. Fab views!
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Impressive falls and great little walk within the forest. You arrive very close to the falls. Worth it!
We visited a number of waterfalls whilst driving through the beautiful Catlins area. Short walks to the stunning waterfalls, lovely area to drive through.
Beautiful lookout points, waterfalls and walks!
A short walk through forest in a scenic reserve which is absolutely magical. The vegetation is wonderful with lots of ferns and tree ferns, and even on a wet day were entranced. well worth a stop - it will only take less than half an hour.
An amazing spot to see - amazing sunset.
Such a nice walk through the rainforest and the waterfall was just stunning.
Expected to be impressed, but the falls were just average, and the water was quite muddy. Not very pretty or picturesque when we visited. On the other hand, McLean Falls were utterly magical! Like stepping back in time…
Short walk to the falls. They are really beautiful, especially when the creek has a lot of water. On the way to the falls you go through a native rainforest. We can recommend it!
Thanks to all the good people working for the NZ Department of Conservation - for all your hard work - making NZ more beautiful, accessable and healthy! Cheers 😍