Auckland is one of the only places outside the tropics where rainforest exists. The rainforest of the Waitakere Ranges is an ecological treasure at Auckland’s western fringe. Situated only 24 kilometres west of Auckland, the area covers more than 16,000 hectares and features more than 250 kilometres of walking trails.These trails take you through beautiful native trees to streams, waterfalls and stunning west coast beaches. Keep a look out for old kauri trees – some are up to 600 years old.
The Waitakere Ranges area is known to local iwi, Te Kawerau a Maki, as Te Wao-nui-aTiriwa (‘the great forest of Tiriwa’), after one of the tribe’s earliest ancestors. The name Waitakere comes from a rock located in the small bay just to the north of the mouth of the river that flows out from Te Henga/Bethells Beach.