1. Paekakariki Escarpment Walkway
The Paekakariki Escarpment track runs from Paekakariki Station to Pukerua Bay Station. You can park at one end and train to the other then walk back to your car.
The first part of the track is relatively flat running next to the railway line. There is then a steep 200 metre climb with many steps, before the track starts going along the ridge. There is a lookout point, then the track starts to descend with more steps (both down and up), and there are two swing bridges (max load of 5 people) on the way out to Muri station. There are a couple of small sections of bush along the route, and breathtaking views of Pukerua Bay.
The signs state 3 – 4 hours for the one way trip, but most fit people will complete the walk in about 2 hours. It is about 10 km from one railway station to the other, and there are kilometre markers along the way.
2. Whareroa Farm
Whareroa Farm has a maze of trails. Some are easy walks for the family, some are better for experienced hikers. It’s even possible to get to Upper Hutt through the trails. Whareroa Farm is located just north of Paekakariki, on SH1. The main walk is one kilometre long, and connects up to many other tracks along the way. There’s horse riding and access to Campbell’s Mill Road at the top of Maungakotukutuku. The vast array of walks means it’s easy to get lost, so it might be best to take a map.
3. Waikanae River
The Waikanae River walk is one of the nicest walks in Kapiti. Winding its way along the riverbank. Starting from Otaihanga, it stretches for ten kilometres from the Waikanae Estuary to the old SH1 and back down the other side of the river. It’s a great course for biking, and goes past Otaihanga Domain, which is an awesome place for the little ones to play. At the Waikanae end, you’re just five minutes outside the central shopping area. It’s a brilliant walk that’s ideal for a family.
4. Mataihuka Walkway (The Trigg Track)
The Mataihuka Walkway is a 4km long track. Also known as the Raumati Escarpment, the track starts on Waterfall Rd and heads up to Panorama Drive. It’s a relatively easy walk that will take about one and a half hours at the maximum, one-way.
Around ten minutes up is a picnic table and the June Rowland lookout. This is a great place to stop and catch your breath, as the track goes higher. The Bill Moxon stone cairn is around 30 minutes further up. The walk has brilliant views over Raumati and the Tasman Sea, with Kapiti Island in sight too.
The track has a slow height increase, going from 18m above sea level to 108m, but this isn’t very steep at all.
5. Wharemauku Stream
The Wharemauku Stream is an incredibly versatile track. It goes from beyond Weka Park the whole way up to the mall, with multiple entry and exit points. These points include the corner of Rata Rd and Manawa Ave, Kiwi Rd, Milne Dr, and as far along as Kapiti Coast Airport to the north, among many others. The track is 9.2km in total, and can be cycled along. It’s also a great walkway to walk your dog. A walk from Matatua Road to Rimu Road should take half an hour maximum.