Urchin Campsite

Urchin Campsite

Kaimanawa Forest Park



12 Rankers Reviews

2 Face-to-Face

196 Basic Camping

12 Turangi



Urchin Camping Ground


Urchin Camping Ground is quite and remote. A great place to base yourself and cycle Tree Trunk Gorge, the Pillars of Hercules or go tramping. There is no water here - the closest water can be found 2km up the road.


Feature Value Info


North IslandTaupo RegionTurangi


  • Basic Camping
  • Free






Annie Pask's avatar

Annie Pask

Ranking: 8/10

We stayed one night in our car. Joined by one other car later in the night. One long drop toilet no lighting but had toilet paper! Nice wee spot surrounded by bush. Feels remote but is actually quite close to main roads. We lit a small fire using some of the fallen branches from the bush around us. We really enjoyed it!

Reviewed about 16 hours ago

Laurie's avatar


Ranking: 8/10

Nice camp ground and quiet stayed 2 days set up hammock in trees had a fire going basic toilet No water bring your own , nice loop walk in forest but not marked and track to tree trunk gorge starts there

Reviewed 8 months ago

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Luis Vigil Vidal's avatar

Luis Vigil Vidal

Ranking: 8/10

You are right in the middle of the forest...secluded area and quite calm. At 20:00 it begins to get busy and fill up. There are like 10 spaces. Basic drop loo. Just keep in mind is bumpy road to arrive, maybe not best for big caravans. Very good option for free camp next to Tongariro.

Reviewed 8 months ago

Sarah's avatar


Ranking: 9/10

Nice quiet campground, got a little lost when I turned into the first campground but so happy I found this one. Long drop toilet, couple of fire pits and benches. Good place for stargazing

Reviewed about 1 year ago

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HollyB4's avatar


Ranking: 8/10

Good area. Designated spots for fires, good sized tables. . Enjoyed the walks and the wildlife.

Toilet was a bit grubby and dark once door shut and area smelt a little.

Reviewed about 1 year ago

Pim Brackenie's avatar

Pim Brackenie


Ranking: 9/10

Very scenic spot in the middle of the forest. No shower, but simple toilet facilities available. You have to drive 15 minutes on a gravel road to get here, but it was doable with an old campervan. Really worth it, however, beware of the bugs that show up at night. From here it is 25 minutes driving to the Tongariro shuttle pick up point.

Reviewed over 1 year ago

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Simon Springett's avatar

Simon Springett

Ranking: 8/10

Was a nice spot off of the beaten track. Great trails starting from the campsite. Lot’s of space and very clean long drop toilets. No water.

Reviewed over 2 years ago

Luis Vigil Vidal's avatar

Luis Vigil Vidal

Ranking: 7/10

Very convenient if doing Tongariro next morning. Drop toilet, quite clean. Dirty road to get there but ok, we did it with a Toyota Hiace campervan and no problema. But maybe with heavy rain not good idea. Couple of easy trecks nearby and fireplaces. Around 10-15 spots! It got quite full by 19:00

Reviewed over 2 years ago

Christine Allgaier's avatar

Christine Allgaier

Ranking: 7/10

It's a nice little camp with space for about 10 cars. The drop loo was just awful, barely usable. But if you're there for the crossing it's a perfect space for one night since only 20 minutes from the finishing car park. Bring your own water since the next spot was about 2km to walk.

Reviewed over 3 years ago

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Tony Maroulis's avatar

Tony Maroulis

Ranking: 10/10

You need to turn at the power plant sign and from there it is signposted. Basic toilets, large field with multiple fire pits. Running water is at the stream, a bit of a walk down a forest path. Lots of insects buzzing but they do not bite.

Reviewed over 4 years ago

Zoe's avatar


New Zealand

Ranking: 9/10

Definitely one of the best spots in the area. Good fire pits, wide open grassy areas with trees for shade and access to the beautiful Tree Trunk Gorge walking/mountain biking track. Top notch

Reviewed over 6 years ago

Kevin Blom's avatar

Kevin Blom


Ranking: 9/10

Short drive from Tongairo Park, clean toilet and nice walks nearby.

Reviewed over 7 years ago and experienced in November 2012

DOC Managed

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 😍

Nick Morrison's avatar

Nick Morrison

Rankers owner