Riwaka Resurgence Track

Riwaka Resurgence Track


20 Rankers Reviews

15 Face-to-Face

8 Motueka

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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These springs aren't hot, jump in if you are brave
Good on ya girls


1.2 km return | 30 minutes return

A Resurgence is a place where a river temporarily darts undergrounds, only to re-emerge through a cliff face. This one is particularly pretty.


Stay on SH60 towards Takaka and turn left onto Riwaka Valley Road

It’s 6.5km up the valley to the roadend, where there is a large grassed parking area and toilets. The start of the track passes under the Maori welcome gate.


The track is well marked and the surface is well graded. However, when it is wet, there are places it can be slippery. The steps to the river edge at the Resurgence are also steep, and you should take extra care.

After passing under the welcome gate, the track meanders alongside the Riuwaka River. There are several places you can approach the river’s edge. A small waterfall is conspicuous by it’s noise. The track continues to the cliff, from where the turquoise waters of the Resurgence are discoverable.


A Resurgence is a place where a river temporarily darts undergrounds, only to re-emerge through a cliff face.

The water is a constant chilly nine degrees centigrade.

Polynesian History

Te Puna o Riuwaka is a place of cultural significance to local tribes Ngati Rarua and Te Atiawa. The sacred waters were used for healing, most notably by the ancestor Hui Te Rangiora.

European History

Divers first entered the cave in 1960. After approximately 30m the underwater cavern arrives at a waterfall. A few more dives bring the explorer to a vast subterranean cavern. This can also be reached by staying dry, as a vast network of caves lattices the underground.


Feature Value Info


DOC Nelson/Tasman

Central government organisation


South IslandNelson RegionMotueka


  • Walking
  • Free


Showing 13 reviews of 20.

Ramiro Araujo's avatar

Ramiro Araujo

Ranking: 10/10

Great cold water pool! Wakes you up better than coffee.

Reviewed over 4 years ago

Louisa Theimann's avatar

Louisa Theimann


Ranking: 10/10

A 20 minute return walk leads to the Riwaka River and the spring of this river It is a holy place for the Maori and when you are there, you will feel a special atmosphere around this place. We respected the spring and did not swim there, but you can swim in the crystal pools down the river. The water is so blue, it is still cold but when you are there at noontime, the sun shines directly into the water. It is a magical place and I definitely recommend it.!

Reviewed about 5 years ago and experienced in December 2016

Pierre Landenne's avatar

Pierre Landenne


Ranking: 9/10

Very intense if you have a swim which I did. Otherwise, it might be too short for such a drive. But worthy, nonetheless.

Reviewed about 5 years ago and experienced in November 2016

Rose Guillaume's avatar

Rose Guillaume


Ranking: 9/10

The most short walking track I have seen but a great spot to relax and jump in a really cold water.

Reviewed about 5 years ago and experienced in November 2016

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Hector Sharp's avatar

Hector Sharp


Ranking: 9/10

Nice little walk but unfortunately the water levels were high so we could not access everything but still a great walk.

Reviewed almost 6 years ago and experienced in March 2016

Jeremy Billy's avatar

Jeremy Billy


Ranking: 9/10

Great peaceful spot with insight into Maori history. Just be aware that it floods in the area and before you are there you will have to cross a few water spots. Spiritual moment indeed.

Reviewed almost 6 years ago and experienced in March 2016

Mikkel Palleson's avatar

Mikkel Palleson


Ranking: 7/10

Cold water - really!! However it was for free and the small waterfall was exquisite to jump into.

Reviewed almost 6 years ago and experienced in January 2016

Laksmi C's avatar

Laksmi C

New Zealand

Ranking: 10/10

This is very special (sacred) spot and has a beautiful still, quiet feel to it...the actual resurgence (where the water comes out of the Takaka Hill) is quite eerie and tapu to Maori...so advise swimming downstream at the crystal pool...it's nicer there anyway...at an invigorating 11deg celcius all year round. The short walk through the bush is lovely. Even further downstream I have heard was a special spot that Maori women used to go to give birth...

Reviewed almost 6 years ago and experienced in January 2016

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Morgan Fog's avatar

Morgan Fog

United States

Ranking: 8/10

Well maintained walk. Quiet. Not many people. Cold water - 10 degrees. Clear water and very refreshing.

Reviewed about 6 years ago

Emily Garside's avatar

Emily Garside

Ranking: 10/10

The crispest coldest most delicious water you can imagine. It comes straight out of a cave with a surrounding so magical I was half expecting a unicorn to trot by.

Reviewed about 6 years ago

Sophie James's avatar

Sophie James


Ranking: 9/10

Beautiful - crystal clear water, this was freezing though.

Reviewed about 7 years ago and experienced in December 2014

Paula Renton's avatar

Paula Renton

New Zealand

Ranking: 8/10

Great short easy picturesque walk - great photo opportunities and well kept.

Reviewed over 7 years ago and experienced in March 2014

Martin Buchta's avatar

Martin Buchta

Czech Republic

Ranking: 10/10

Great place hidden in the forest at the foot of Takaka hills. Sacred place for Maori also. Swimming is really a challenge. :)

Reviewed about 8 years ago and experienced in January 2014

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