Introductory to Moderate
  • Self-guided Walk
  • 1 night motel
  • 3 nights farm house
  • 3 Dinners
  • 3 Lunches
  • 4 Breakfasts


5 daysfrom


Trip Code: GHH

Trip highlights

  • Truly remote high country New Zealand experience
  • Stunning waterfalls and swimming
  • Fascinating rock features and bluffs
  • Pa site and Maori observation points
  • 40 kilometres of private trails with limited visitor numbers
  • Learn about high country life and the history of the region and its conservation

Away from the crowds, walk at your own pace while soaking in the pleasures of these remote hills of Gisborne. You will explore a diverse range of landscapes and vegetation across 3 days of walking. This self-guided walk will see you explore 40kms of trails amidst the high hills of Haurata while your evenings can be spent unwinding under the night sky in the outdoor hot tub heated by natural gas. Spaces in the farm home are limited to 8 people, so you will never feel crowded and will be able to experience the land for the wild and remote nature that it is. With no traffic noise, get used to the silence of the night and awakening to the sound of bird calls. A truly uniquely New Zealand experience!The clean mountain air, pure drinking water, extensive gardens, and wholesome gourmet meals using fresh local produce all add to the luxury of this 100% New Zealand high country journey.


Make your own way to Tairawhiti/Gisborne and check-in to your trip accommodation any time after 2:00pm. Spend the afternoon strolling along the beach front or visiting the Tairawhiti Museum for a glimpse into Maori history and culture. Food and wine lovers will be spoilt for choice with a multitude of cafes, restaurants and bars to suit all budgets and tastes.

Meals:  Nil

You will be picked up from your trip accommodation in Gisborne at 8:00am and transferred to Haurata High Country Retreat. You'll have the chance to settle into your farm stay accommodation and enjoy a cuppa before setting off on your first day walk (walks can be swapped around based on weather forecast if need be.) Te Kooti's historic walk is on Sam and Jill Charteris’s Hillview Station and takes you to the top of Ngatapa Mountain. You will pass a disused oil rig site where in 1985 Petro Corp tried to drill for oil. They capped the hole and left as they didn’t have the right equipment to go deep enough (we think). In 1869 the Ringatu church leader Te Kooti took his people to the top of Ngatapa Mountain to a pa site. He was surrounded by the English constabulary and Ropata from the Ngati-Porou tribe before escaping over the cliffs into the Ureweras. See the hole in the ground where Ropata blew the pallistrades. Upon returning from your walk, relax in the hot tub or explore the private gardens before enjoying a delicious home style dinner featuring organic, seasonal produce.

Meals:  B,L,D

While staying at Haurata provisions for a continental or cooked breakfast and a good old fashioned picnic lunch are provided each morning. After fueling up for the day, head out on your second and potentially most challenging of the three farm walks. The Waterfalls Adventure walk leaves the retreat and heads up to the high point above the woolshed (770m) before heading off down the hill to view three fascinating waterfalls at 300m above sea level. There are opportunities to have a stop along the way for a rest or refreshing swim, so don't forget to pack your swim suit and towel. Back at the retreat enjoy another quiet evening and well earned gourmet dinner.

Meals:  B,L,D

Today is your final farm walk and will not dissapoint! Start out walking from 600 metres above sea level to some native QE11 bush then on to the Aerial Range 922 metres above sea level with views of Mt Hikurangi in the North, Gisborne and Young Nicks Head in the East. Panekiri Bluff in the West (Waikaremoana). Built on the Aerial range is a large telecom tower, the Maori’s call the range Matakitaki (observation point). This is where the East Coast plate is pushing on the Pacific plate creating the unique land structure. Soil types differing on either side of the range. See the remains of huge native trees burnt by out of control fires caused by farmers clearing land back in the 1920’s. Make the most of your final evening with one last soak under the stars and a beautiful meal to round out a magnificent walking adventure.

Meals:  B,L,D

After breakfast and a leisurely stroll in the gardens you will be transferred back to Gisborne where trip arrangements end. Expect to arrive between late morning and midday.

Meals:  B



The map and elevation chart are for illustrative purposes only and meant to provide general guidelines.
On self guided trips, actual route information provided before departure will be more detailed.


  • 1 night motel accommodation in Gisborne (twin share) with private bathroom
  • 3 nights Farm Stay accommodation, shared bathrooms with hot showers
  • 4 breakfasts, 3 lunches, and 3 dinners
  • Private hot tub use during the entire trip
  • Drinking water (available from motel and farm stay)
  • Return transfers from Gisborne to Haurata
  • Route notes and map
  • New Zealand Goods and Services Tax (GST)

  • International or domestic flights and taxes
  • Meals not mentioned in the itinerary and trail snacks
  • Drinks other than water, tea/coffee/hot chocolate - good drinking water is available at each night's accommodation
  • Water bottle (help us save the environment by bringing your own drink bottle or hydration system)
  • Personal equipment such as rainwear, gaiters, walking boots, walking poles etc
  • Personal expenses (e.g. phone calls, wi-fi, laundry, shopping etc)
  • Travel Insurance
  • Visa (if required)

Trail Surface



Introductory to Moderate  

INTRODUCTORY TO MODERATE - GRADE 4 These trips involve a combination of what is described in our Introductory and Moderate levels. The emphasis is on introductory activity with several moderate stages. These adventures involve walking for up to 6 or 7 hours a day at a steady pace. You will need a good level of fitness and must be in good health. Be prepared for potential variable weather conditions. The majority of the track is well graded, but there are a few challenging short ascents and descents, plus uneven surfaces and narrow sections in parts. Suggested preparation: We recommend 45 minutes of aerobic type exercise three times a week, from a minimum of three months period to your departure. This can include swimming, jogging, hard walking or cycling - good cardiovascular exercise. Hill or stair walking with a 7kg daypack is also highly recommended at least once a week. During the walking stages you will need to carry your daily requirements such as water, lunch, spare clothing and personal items.

Departure dates

Daily departures from 30 October 2023 to 30 April 2024

Want to organise a customised tour?

School groups, friends, family trips, corporate events and even making the trail accessible for everyone. Learn how you can organise a Customised Tour with Great Walks of New Zealand.

Priceper person from


Options & Supplements*
    *Prices listed are per person and also from

Essential Information

Ready to book? Make sure you download and read the detailed Haurata High Country Self-Guided Walk trip notes which contains all the essential information you need to know before booking. Once you’ve booked, we will supply you with a Pre-Departure document which contains a detailed gear list and other important information to help you prepare for your adventure ahead.

Trip reviews

Why walk with us

Self-Guided Experts

Our itineraries have been carefully designed and researched with you in mind.  The logistics are handled for you allowing you the freedom to walk New Zealand at a level of your choosing and in your own stride.


A core Maori value exercising guardianship in relation to nature, flora and fauna and its people, ensuring that sustainability and environment are valued, respected and protected for future generations to enjoy.

Supporting Local

As a small business ourselves, we love supporting and sharing New Zealand with other small and likeminded businesses and communities to showcase for you, what our land and people have to offer.

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