30 min
Information for this trail was last updated February 2024

The walk over Makorori Headland is 30 minutes return and gives you sweeping views of the two surf beaches of Makorori and Wainui, as well as south to Te Kurī-a-Pāoa (Young Nick’s Head) and Mahia Peninsula. A track branches off on the inland side to connect (across State Highway 35) to the Okitu Bush Scenic Reserve.

Track climbs from the beach to 66m, and descends to the beach again.

Trail fly-through

History of the trail

Makorori Headland has an oral tradition of occupation by Maori. Two eroding areas of cliff reveal middens on the headland. Apart from midden material, archaeologists have reported no other evidence of Maori occupation. However, Ngati Rakai and Ngati Konohi occupied the area. Rakaiatane erected Panehu Pa, a lookout with its own water supply. The pa was used to ensure the safe passage of boats that launched from Makorori Beach, the shortest route to Te Toka Ahuru (Ariel Reef) and their fishing grounds. Fire pits on the ridgeline of the hill behind the headland were used to guide the boats into the beach. There may also have been another pa site on the headland. 

 (from W.D. Lysnar and Wainui Beach Reserves Management Plan, GDC ) 

Tips & Logistics

The trail over Te Kūrae o Makorori connects Wainui/Okitu Beach with Makorori Beach. It can be approached from either north or south. In places a gravel trail needs to be created beside the sections with steps to make this trail cycle-friendly. Carparks are available at the Okitu side of Te Kūrae o Makorori, at Okitu Scenic Reserve, and at the northern end of the trail, all beside SH35 (Whāngarā Road).

Take care when crossing SH35 to and from the Okitu Bush Scenic Reserve.