#UPDATE March 2021: Unfortunately this walk remains closed. For the latest information contact Waikato District Council.
From its murky swamps to towering eucalyptus trees, the Newstead Walkway will delight little explorers.
This walk is nature’s playground for kids. Two starting points meet in an open glade surrounded by towering eucalyptus trees - they are some of the tallest specimens in New Zealand.
This means there are massive trunks to hug, fallen trees to clamber over (look out for the stick insects) and home-made forest huts to play in.
The walkway is a partnership between Waikato Regional Council and DairyNZ and may be started from either from Vaile Road or Morrinsville Road.
From the Vaile Road end you are flanked by two farms before dropping into a swampy area covered in vines with a boardwalk before popping up into the glade. This is the quickest route to the glade. From the Morrinsville Road entry, walk through regenerating forest and alongside a meandering muddy creek that gives kids loads of opportunities to explore. Two side tracks lead to Newstead Model Country School, and Hamilton Park Cemetery.
Bring a picnic, the buggy, a bike and the pooch. This is a very accessible walk so settle in for an afternoon of nature exploring. An amazing location so close to Hamilton.
The entry and exit points in the glade are almost diagonally opposite each other. A little tricky to see from the other side.
Distance: Approximately 1.5 km from Morrisville Road to Vaile Road.
Accessibility: Well graded paths suitable for buggies and bikes. Mixture of boardwalks, gravel and dirt paths.
How to get there: From Hamilton head out of town on Ruakura Road from Hillcrest, then turn left into Vaile Road. The entrance is well hidden. It’s just after the Hamilton Car Club on the right. There is a small brown sign on the left. Parking is limited to an off-road area in front of the Club. Alternatively park on Morrinsville Road just after Hamilton Park Cemetery and before the Newstead Model Country School.
Important: Bring insect repellent!