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Sites of interest

Sites of interest

Updated 28 November 2017 3:31pm

Lake Domain Reserve

Access via South Featherston Road. 

Popular with walkers, mountain bikers, picnickers, campers and duck-shooters, this open area is great for recreation, although exposed to the elements.  Projects are underway to encourage the growth of native plants.

Matthews and Boggy Pond Wildlife Reserve

Access via Parera Road, off Kahutara Road. 

Observe wetland birds – ducks, swans, white herons, stilts, bitterns, royal spoonbills – from a new viewing hide accessed via an 800m walking and mountain biking track.  Return to the road, or explore a longer 2.6km loop.

Wairio Block


Access via Parera Road, off Kahutara Road.

The area provides several kilometres of access to the eastern shore of Lake Wairarapa and features large flocks of wading birds during the summer months. Long grass and thick wetland plants make walking difficult.

Wairarapa Lake Shore Scenic Reserve

Access via Western Lake Road

The only remaining area where native forest still reaches the lake shore, it features trees such as black beech, titoki, nikau and karaka.  Three separate roadside areas provide opportunities for picnicking and extensive lake views.

Pounui Lagoon

Caspian terns at Onoke Spit

Separated from Lake Onoke by a stop bank in the 1960s, this is an excellent example of a native salt marsh.  Wetland birds can be viewed from the stop bank, although access may be limited particularly in whitebait season.

Onoke Spit

Access at the end of Western Lake Road, Palliser Bay.

A 3km spit of land which extends to the sea channel separating it from the Lake Ferry settlement on the opposite shore.  It is a breeding ground for the rare Caspian tern and habitat for banded dotterel, albatross and penguins. Lower slopes are home to rare grasses, katipo, lizards and other wildlife. Out to sea, dolphins, seals and whales are sometimes visible.