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Akatarawa Forest

Akatarawa Forest

Karapoti Road, Akatarawa, Upper Hutt, 5372

Turn off State Highway 2 at Akatarawa Rd towards Waikanae and follow for 6km. Turn left onto Karapoti Road and follow this to the park entrance.

For more information about other entrances check the Getting there tab in left hand menu.

Opening hours

Daily from 8am until dusk

Dogs are welcome. Please keep them under control and remove droppings. Dogs are not permitted, on the southern portion (Tulsa Park and Zig Zag entrance) of the Cannon Point Walkway as it crosses private land.
Fireworks are prohibited in all Regional Parks and Forest areas.

About Akatarawa Forest

Covering 15,000 hectares of wilderness area between Upper Hutt and the Kapiti Coast, Akatarawa Forest is a rugged blend of native and exotic forest. Mountain, quad and trail bikers find a variety of gentle and challenging routes along the tracks and old logging roads. Popular for horse riding, fishing, hunting and tramping, the Akatarawa Forest provides enjoyable and testing terrain for 4WD-vehicle club trips. It is the home to the Karapoti Classic mountain bike race featuring the legendary Karapoti Gorge.

Park Notices

Heavy Machinery doing maintenance on Pram Track follow signage and pass with care

Pig hunting will be permitted in some areas of Wellington’s regional parks and plantation forests in a one-year trial by Greater Wellington Regional Council. Hunters can apply now for permits to hunt in Puketiro Plantation Forest and Valley View Forest from today (1 November) and in Kaitoke Regional Park from 1 December. 

River Closed Hazards Ahead - Sept 2018

Forestry operations are taking place above the Whakatiki River between the junction of Wainui Stream and Rallywoods Bridge. Due to the risks from wire ropes/fallen trees this section of river will be closed from the 3rd September 2018 until forestry operations have been completed in 4-5 weeks.

For any further inquiries please contact the Forest Ranger: 0274788106

See map

Cannon Point walkway now open - July 2018

People looking to walk Upper Hutt’s Cannon Point Walkway can now do so following the re-opening to the public of its zigzag access section following its closure in December 2017.

This is one of Upper Hutt’s most popular bush tracks at 10 km long. It is a moderately demanding walk on a well-formed track in the hills to the west of Upper Hutt which passes through private land and Akatarawa forest. Highlights include native bush and the historic Birchville Reservoir.

The track starts from the Upper Hutt City Council managed Tulsa Park and heads up the hill via the zigzag to the trig, where there are stunning views of Upper Hutt.

Park history


The Akatarawa Forest covers hill country between Upper Hutt and Paraparaumu. Translated to English, Akatarawa means 'trailing vines'. Maori used the forest for hunting and food gathering as well as an access trail to and from the Hutt Valley. The indigenous (native) forest of the area, covering approximately 14,000 hectares, has changed considerably since European settlement. These changes have been brought about by the introduction of animals, fires and logging of native timber including rimu.


Get in touch

Phone: 0800 496 734
Fax: not available