Click to go to the Porirua Pathfinder page.Ara Harakeke Pathway: Top 12 Tracks No. 1

This pathway runs between Paremata and Pukerua Bay and is an easy challenge for a family walk or cycle.

The 8.7 kilometre sealed track runs alongside rugged coastal areas, four beaches, a nationally important wetland, a steam train operation, and World War Two pillboxes. It passes through three communities: Mana, Plimmerton and Pukerua Bay in the north. It has great places to stop for coffee and refreshments at Mana and Plimmerton and takes around 1-3/4 hours to walk one way.

Walkers with prams and dogs at Pukerua Bay end of Ara Harakeke Pathway.
Walkers with prams and dogs at Pukerua Bay end of Ara Harakeke Pathway.

Paremata – Plimmerton

From Paremata to Plimmerton the gradient is flat. This section of the track is 3 kilometres, and takes around 30-45 minutes to walk one-way. Starting at Paremata Railway Station the track crosses the Paremata Bridge, then under the railway line to the marina and north along the coast. The World War Two pillboxes are on this section of the track.

Plimmerton – Whenua Tapu

From Plimmerton to Whenua Tapu the track continues from the railway underpass on Steyne Avenue. Allow another 40 minutes or so to walk this 3.3 kilometre, flat and easy section. This part of the track travels beside the nationally important wetland, Taupo Swamp, and is ideal for families with prams, children learning to ride bikes, or wheelchair users.

Whenua Tapu – Pukerua Bay

From Airlie Road (at Whenua Tapu) to the Pukerua Bay shops the gradient is a gentle incline, getting steeper as it reaches Pukerua Bay. This section travels through regenerating native vegetation, away from State Highway One, and will take around 30 minutes to walk one-way. Treat yourself to an ice cream or drink at the Pukerua Bay shops before heading back.

How to get there

Park at Paremata Railway Station or by the Pukerua Bay shops on State Highway One and follow the signs. Catch the train one way and cycle/walk back, or enter mid-way along the route at Ngatitoa Domain, at Mana Railway Station, Steyne Avenue, Ulric Street or Airlie Road. Visit Metlink's website for bus and train timetables.

Click on the image to view the Ara Harakeke line drawing map (pdf). Maps


This is a shared use path - Walkers, Prams; Bikes; Wheelchairs. Note: The last two kilometres into Pukerua Bay become steeper but are still manageable.


Dogs are permitted on the track but must be on a lead at all times.


Toilets: Public toilets at Whenua Tapu, Plimmerton Domain and shops and at Ngatitoa Domain.


Easy (South of Airlie Road) to Moderate (North of Airlie Road).

Elevation: Ara Harakake Track.

View elevation as full screen image.

Links to other Tracks

Track 4, Camborne Walkway; Track 2, The Taua Tapu Track; Track 22, Wairaka Walkway. From Paremata Station, heading south, use State Highway One overbridges to get to Papakowhai Road and follow this south.

Please refer to our "Porirua's Great Walking and Cycling Tracks" brochure (1.9MB 2 page pdf) for more information.

Environment Code

  • Protect plants and wildlife
  • Remove rubbish
  • Keep to the track
  • Consider other people
  • Clean up after your dog

Code of Conduct for Shared Pathways

  • Keep left
  • Consider others
  • Cyclists: use hand signals, warn others when passing and always give way to pedestrians. If necessary, give way to uphill users.


We hope you enjoy our Top 12 Tracks, and have the opportunity to complete all 12. Fill in our online feedback form with ideas for improvements, or reporting any issues or problems you encountered.