Pororari River Track

Pororari River Track

Punakaiki

88%

Details

42 Rankers Reviews

40 Face-to-Face

279 Walking

7 Punakaiki

Maps

Photos

very Jerasic
Walk through dense rainforest

Information

7 km return | 2 hours return

Deep limestone canyons, jungle like nikau, huge rata and a swirling river make this walk a real distillation of West Coast majesty.

Access

Pororari River Track is signposted 1 km north of Punakaiki Visitor Centre on SH6.

Track

The well-graded track shortly enters the vertical walled gorge and weaves alongside the tannin-stained Pororari River.

A natural arch under a rata tree, memorable lookout over the river, forest and limestone walls and a dense temperate rainforest quickly make you realise this is a special walk.

Look for trout in the water.

A grotto with wooden and rock steps after 45 minutes is an easy place to bump your head and can be slippery.

The track concludes at the swingbridge, where there is a small rocky beach at the natural turn-around spot.

Return via the same track.

There are options to follow the Punakaiki River to form an 11 km loop, but this requires transport at the other end.

Geology

The limestone around Paparoa forms part of a syncline. The exposed beds above ground have been upthrust through tectonic movements, then carved by rivers to form the deep gorges.

Flora

Rata, nikau and podocarps are the distinguishing specimens lending a tropical-like feel to the forest.

This well-watered forest is true rainforest, but in a temperate latitude.

Be aware of the native nettle ongaonga on the trackside. The spines are easily recognisable and the sting can hurt for months.

Details

Feature Value Info

Location

South IslandWest CoastPunakaiki

Categories

  • Walking
  • Free

Contact

Reviews

Showing 13 reviews of 39.

Tim Struessmann's avatar

Tim Struessmann

Germany

Ranking: 10/10

Beautiful native forest, nice river.

Reviewed about 2 years ago and experienced in March 2017

Jerome Cluzel's avatar

Jerome Cluzel

France

Ranking: 8/10

Super easy hiking and largely ahead of the time given at the outset. Beautiful view and atypical scenery!

Reviewed about 2 years ago and experienced in December 2016

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Loic Besson's avatar

Loic Besson

France

Ranking: 8/10

A free hike between forest and the Pororari River. A beautiful forest and a finish with the Pancake Rocks. Amazing view for this landscape. And the must: eat a pancake at the Pancake Rocks Cafe.

Reviewed about 2 years ago and experienced in December 2016

Cyril's avatar

Cyril

France

Ranking: 7/10

Very nice walk along the river, with hills on both sides. When you wake up early in the morning, head to the top, the hills are in the clouds and it gives you a special atmosphere. Also nice for jogging!!

Reviewed over 2 years ago and experienced in November 2016

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Richard Fox's avatar

Richard Fox

United Kingdom

Ranking: 8/10

Lovely, quite easy riverside walk amongst the tree ferns with a few openings to view the other side of the river.

Reviewed over 2 years ago and experienced in November 2016

Gabriela's avatar

Gabriela

Switzerland

Ranking: 10/10

When done as a loop it is an easy half day walk. Through an almost magic Nikau forest all along the river, then uphill over the range, down to Punakaiki River. Back to Pororari carpark along the road.

Reviewed over 3 years ago

Laura and Marie's avatar

Laura and Marie

Germany

Ranking: 7/10

Very nice walk along the river through the rainforest, beautiful views, mud on the last half - that was the bad side.

Reviewed over 4 years ago and experienced in January 2015

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Douglas Dean's avatar

Douglas Dean

United States

Ranking: 9/10

Expansive stretch of emerald green water, a winding track with lovely mountain overhang and many swimming launch points.

Reviewed over 4 years ago and experienced in March 2014

Jacques Revel's avatar

Jacques Revel

France

Ranking: 9/10

Very beautiful walk along the river with magnificent flora, but short cut because of bridge works.

Reviewed about 5 years ago and experienced in March 2014

Patricia Revel's avatar

Patricia Revel

France

Ranking: 10/10

Very beautiful and peaceful place.

Reviewed about 5 years ago and experienced in March 2014

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Daniel Danamer's avatar

Daniel Danamer

United Kingdom

Ranking: 9/10

Gentle flowing river surrounded by lush trees and cliffs. Very quiet and easy to access. Map available from the i-Site.

Reviewed about 5 years ago and experienced in January 2014

Dave Mertzig's avatar

Dave Mertzig

United States

Ranking: 10/10

Amazing! Beautiful, awesome swimming, just perfect.

Reviewed about 5 years ago and experienced in March 2013

Helen Dean's avatar

Helen Dean

United States

Ranking: 10/10

The walk was perfect even for slightly out of shape middle aged people. So beautiful with eye candy you hardly notice you are hiking up and down moss lined trails.

Reviewed about 5 years ago and experienced in March 2013

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Nick Morrison

Rankers owner