New scenic walkway opening in Bay of Islands

The final stage of a walkway that winds through coastal beaches, mangroves and native bush between Okiato and Russell in the Bay of Islands will be officially opened to the public on Saturday, 24 September.

The 8.2km walkway was developed by the Bay of Islands Walkways Trust with funding support from the New Zealand Walking Access Commission, New Zealand Lottery Grants Board and ASB Community Trust. The track completes a full day walking circuit encompassing Russell – Okiato – Opua – Paihia using ferry links and the existing Paihia to Opua Coastal Walkway.

Bay of Islands Walkways Trust Secretary Margaret Pasco said the walkway gave people the opportunity to see native flora and fauna, historic sites and rare native birds.

“Rare birds such as fernbirds, weka and kiwi are present. Okiato at the start of the track was the first capital of New Zealand and the remains of the original well can still be seen.â€