2 km
30 min
15 min
Information for this trail was last updated January 2024

This is an attractive, mainly off-road trail between Gisborne’s Alfred Cox Skatepark and Midway Beach/Oneroa Trail. Most of the route runs alongside the Waikanae Stream through a tree-lined park.

The Grey Street precinct includes the popular international standard skate park and pump track, the i-Site and mini-golf. People use this trail to mix up a beach experience with a quiet, tree-lined park.

Trail fly-through

History of the trail

Thousands of people a year make use of Alfred Cox Park, with its i-Site Visitor Information Centre, mini-golf, Saturday morning flea market and open space. Yet few would know of the man who, inspired by a world trip, bought trees and land for public parks, and helped develop natural assets for public use and enjoyment. 

Born in Gisborne in 1883, Cox joined the Post and Telegraph Department in 1897 and survived the South African Boer War. In 1922, he bought 3,500 trees from the Forest Service for planting a soldiers’ memorial park on Titirangi/Kaiti Hill.  Later he bought eight acres at the top of Beach Road (now Endcliffe) to provide access to Kaiti Beach and to enable a throughway to be constructed along the top of Kaiti Hill. He also bought and gifted six acres on either side of Grey Street, fronting Waikanae Stream, part of which became Alfred Cox Park. Cox received an MBE in 1966 for his efforts.

A member of Gisborne 30,000 Club and Waikanae Beach Improvement Society, he focused on securing public access to Waikanae Beach along the full length of the foreshore, and with donations from citizens, councils and unemployment relief funds enabled the development of a five and a half- mile marine drive from the gaol to the Waipaoa River. 

With financial assistance from numerous citizens, he bought several sections of land between Awapuni Road and the beach which became Churchill Park. He worked hard to secure the 1944 release of gaol buildings and land for use as a motor camp. He planted many Norfolk pines and pohutukawa along the beach, but few survived.   

Since 2022, the park has gained more use through the construction of a pump track and, on the other side of Grey Street, the redeveloped Alfred Cox Skatepark, the vision of Tairāwhiti Adventure Trust. This skatepark is now suitable for high-performance athletes.

Tips & Logistics

Close to the central city, beaches and rivers, the trail can be used as part of a longer journey, or a connecting trail. 

Start at Waikanae or Midway Beach and make a circular journey to contrast the beach environment with a river and park. 

Walk through town to the beach or Kiwa Pools at Midway Beach via Grey Street and Alfred Cox Park. Take the kids skateboarding or to the pump park on the way. 

Not far from here is the Childers Road sports hub with tennis, netball, pickle ball, basketball, soccer, CrossFit, and the YMCA Gym. 

The route goes from Oneroa Trail and Kiwa Pools precinct via Beacon Street, through Awapuni School before crossing over the railway line and Waikanae Stream into Alfred Cox Park. 

Several paths lead off the park – to Anzac Street and Roebuck Road, and (across grass) to Carnarvon Street. 

School children in the vicinity can make their way to Awapuni School on the trail and, via Anzac Street and Roebuck Road, to Gisborne Intermediate School. Another link route is from Stanley Road through the park to Grey Street. From Grey Street the trail also continues along Waikanae Stream (on the beach side) to Te Wai o Hiharore Commemorative Garden near the historic Gisborne Railway Station. 

Awapuni Road, which doubles as State Highway 35, is particularly busy during the week, with large trucks and other traffic. Cyclists are advised to dismount and cross the crossing near Awapuni School with caution. 

Keep up to date with social media postings from Tairawhiti Adventure Trust, which was instrumental in developing the skatepark and pump park. We commend these to you. 

Instagram:  tairawhitiadventuretrust
Facebook: Tairawhiti Adventure Trust