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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.

Park notices

Whakatikei Forest update

In April,  Forest360 will be completing aerial spraying of herbicide, distributed via helicopter, in the recently harvested Whakatikei Forest. The operational zone is outlined in the map below, which will be closed to the public for half a day while the operation is completed.

Works are weather dependent, and will occur during suitable conditions in April. The operation will happen during the week, early in the morning. We apologise for any inconvenience, and ask that you adhere to the associated road closures and safety guidelines on signage.

For more information, contact

See the full map

1080 operation, autumn 2021

Posted 12/3/21

We are undertaking an aerial possum control operation in the Akatarawa Forest, using the biodegradable pesticide, sodium fluoroacetate (1080). Ongoing planning has meant the aerial project is forecast for the coming months, rather than the earlier months of February-March as previously notified.

Weather dependent, Aerial baiting is expected approximately 7-10 days following non-toxic pre-feed application.

This may affect some park activities such as hunting, horse riding or motorised recreation. You will be notified about this if you hold a permit for one of these activities.

For more information on this predator control operation, or others in our region, head to our 1080 operations page or read the fact sheet

COVID-19 update

Posted 8/3/21

We are currently at Alert Level 1. In order to recover from the effects of COVID-19 in our community, it is important to:

If you have any questions for us, please call 0800 496 734.


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 history


The Akatarawa Forest covers hill country between Upper Hutt and Paraparaumu. Translated to English, Akatarawa means 'trailing vines'. Maori 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