Mangapohue Natural Bridge Walk

Mangapohue Natural Bridge Walk - Waitomo

Mangapohue Natural Bridge Walk



16 Rankers Reviews

8 Face-to-Face

3 Waitomo

Your Nature Guide

Marios Gavalas's avatar

Marios Gavalas

Author And Researcher

Nau mai, haere mai

Nau mai, haere mai

I'm Marios, delivering the best of Aotearoa's nature walks to your device.

I've personally walked hundreds of New Zealand's tracks and spent months in libraries uncovering interesting information on New Zealand/Aotearoa. And you'll find a slice of that research on this page - enjoy!


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700 m return | 20 minutes return

Mangapohue Natural Bridge is a highlight on the scenic drive from Waitomo Village to Marokopa. The 5 minute track to the left is pushchair-friendly and follows a boardwalk through an impressive limestone gorge that brings you underneath a natural bridge.


Mangapohue Natural Bridge Scenic Reserve is signposted on the right, 24 km west of Waitomo Caves. There’s a large parking area with picnic tables and toilets just over the bridge.


The first section to the twin bridge is flat and board walked with a bridge over the Mangapohue Stream. The gorge is impressive with wheelchair access to the lower viewing platform. From here there are steps to upper viewing platform.

Continuing, you cross a stile into farmland. It can be muddy and slippery as you pass limestone outcrops with fossilised oyster shells. Another stile leads back to the main track to complete the loop.


Most limestone in the area was deposted during the Oligocene geological period around 34-23 million years ago. Calcareous sandstones and mudstones were deposited in warmer climates and higher latitudes, eventually being compressed to form the karst limestones of today.

On the ceiling are these weird bio stalactites. Unlike usual hard calcareous non-biological deposits, these have been formed by mosses and algae feeding off the calcium rich waters, depositing the excess precipitate as they grown. They are known as epitrophic speleothems.

The fossilised oysters after the bridge are around 35 million years old and reached sizes of nearly a foot long! Would likely have been like eating your car tyre with a bit of salt.


Feature Value Info


DOC Waikato

Central government organisation


North IslandWaikatoWaitomo


  • Walking
  • Free


Showing 13 reviews of 16.

Mike Fricker's avatar

Mike Fricker

United Kingdom

Ranking: 10/10

20Sept18. Brill little walk. Not sure if we saw oysters, prob didn’t know what to look for.

Reviewed over 3 years ago

C J B's avatar


New Zealand

Ranking: 8/10

FREE. One of the few non-commercialised attractions in Waitomo area. 5 min boardwalk to stunning cavern, parking will be limited in warmer months. Rotten long drop, avoid. 20 min round trip to fossil rock if you can be bothered with soggy field. There also exists a free glow worm cave (Piripiri) a couple km drive west before falls.

Reviewed almost 4 years ago

Hannes's avatar



Ranking: 10/10

Natural bridge, once a cave, beautiful in the day or night, plenty of glowworms - magical.

Reviewed almost 6 years ago and experienced in March 2016

Anna Jungclaus's avatar

Anna Jungclaus


Ranking: 8/10

Not what we expected - way bigger and pretty awesome! Go along the whole track, the stones outside are great as well. Only thing, that there are a lot of signs in front of the views.

Reviewed almost 6 years ago and experienced in February 2016

Thank You - to the thousands of travellers that have contributed to our Top Voted NZ Activities Map - it's free from Rankers.

Madeleine Panholzer's avatar

Madeleine Panholzer


Ranking: 10/10

Beautiful natural bridge/limestone gorge with an arch. One of my favourite spots. A short bush walk (well maintained track) takes you to this impressive formation - jaw dropping.

Reviewed almost 6 years ago and experienced in March 2016

Marka Okrutny's avatar

Marka Okrutny


Ranking: 10/10

A very short walk to see a natural bridge. We walked it during the day and then came back at night to see the walks and ceiling covered in glowworms. No one else around and for free!

Reviewed almost 6 years ago and experienced in March 2016

Chiara's avatar



Ranking: 10/10

Incredible view at night, for free.

Reviewed about 6 years ago

Loic Journet's avatar

Loic Journet

Ranking: 8/10

The natural bridge is interesting. The walk and the landscape view are very peaceful.

Reviewed over 6 years ago

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Christopher's avatar



Ranking: 9/10

Another nice short walk to a real natural wonder. Only 30 minutes and good to combine with the waterfall and the glowworm cave.

Reviewed over 6 years ago

W & K Boyd's avatar

W & K Boyd


Ranking: 10/10

This was impressive and it is well worth stopping off to visit. An easy walk from the carpark, and a great opportunity for photos. Best of all, there were no crowds - we only saw one other group of 4 that were leaving when we got there.

Reviewed over 8 years ago

Lee Lloyd's avatar

Lee Lloyd

United States

Ranking: 9/10

The natural bridge is totally cool! Empty, no tourists!

Reviewed about 10 years ago

jeckert55's avatar


United States

Ranking: 10/10

We had a great experience on this walk -- the rock formations are unique to this corner of the country, and since this landscape used to be underwater, you can see shells and marine fossils along the trail (they're marked, because you'd not likely find them on your own).

Reviewed over 10 years ago

Peter W.'s avatar

Peter W.

New Zealand

Ranking: 10/10

This was impressive. The bush walk to the feature is beautiful and is wheelchair accessible. Once there, standing beneath this great slab of overhanging limestone, good DOC standard wooden staircase takes you higher up to a lookout, then a rougher and, muddy on our visit, track loops back to the start. There's a good long-drop toilet and picnic tables near the carpark. Impressive, accessible and FREE - an unconditional 10/10.

Reviewed over 10 years ago

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 😍

Cymen Crick's avatar

Cymen Crick