Best Dog Friendly Trails

There’s nothing like getting out in nature with your doggo and here’s our pick of trails that you’ll both enjoy.

Camborne Walkway

Hugging the shore of the Pāuatahanui inlet, the Camborne Walkway is a fabulous spot to walk your dog off-lead in Porirua. This sheltered area is beautiful on a calm day, and with views of the colourful Camborne boatsheds it’s a joy for both you and your furry friend. On-leash restrictions apply at either end of the walkway.

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Northern Walkway including Mt Kaukau and Khandallah Park

Doggies are welcome to join you (on leash) on the Northern Walkway, a half-day journey along Wellington’s outer Green Belt from Johnsonville to the Botanic Gardens. The trail will take you via the picturesque Mount Kaukau and Te Ahumairangi (Tinakori Hill) where there is also an off-leash dog exercise area.

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Tawatawa Reserve 

A favourite spot for dog walkers, this flat walkway is great for a leisurely afternoon in nature. With entrances from Island Bay and Kingston, Tawatawa is a reserve surrounded by hills on three sides. Your dog will love the flat grass paddock that spans the large dog exercise area, where your dog can roam leash-free. For other trails through the reserve, dogs are allowed on lead. 

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Remutaka Cycle Trail including the Hutt River

It’s on your bucket list and it can be on your dog’s bucket list, too! The trails comprising the Remutaka Cycle Trail are dog-friendly as long as your pooch is kept on leash. There is even a section your dog can roam off-lead on the Hutt River Trail from Stokes Valley to Whites Line West, the entire eastern side of the river. Please note that no dogs are permitted on the Wairarapa South Coast beyond Cross Creek to Orongorongo Station. 

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Masterton Recreation Trails

Grab the whole family (including the dog!) for a walk along the Masterton Recreation Trails. The trails wind their way through the township’s stunning parks and recreation areas, past Henley Lake and the nearby wetlands and offer expansive off-leash exercise areas for dogs. Waipouia River Trail, Lansdowne Trail and Henley Lake and its wetlands are all leash-free for your doggo. Please note that dogs must be on-leash at Henley Lake Wetlands between 1 August and 30 December to protect nesting birds

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Waikanae River Trail

Take a stroll along the banks of the Waikanae River on the Kāpiti Coast. It’s a flat and easy 10km walk, or the trail can be broken down into small loop tracks. In the warmer months, pack your swimming togs to take advantage of the opportunity to stop and take a dip in the Waikanae River (you know that your dog will be jumping in!). Dogs can explore off-lead along the whole river trail, except for the dog-free areas at Otaihanga Domain, Jim Cooke Park and Otaraua Park which are well signposted.

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Te Ara o Whareroa

Take your dog for a walk along the wavy dune lands of the Kāpiti Coast, from Raumati South to Paekakariki. Te Ara o Whareroa is an easy 6km trail that traverses the dunes of the Kāpiti Coast, just one hour’s drive or a train ride from Wellington. The trail extends from Queen Elizabeth Park in Paraparaumu all the way through to Tilley Road in Paekakariki with stunning ocean views along the way. This popular shared route is used by locals for recreational walking, biking and horse-riding, so dogs must be on-leash at all times.

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