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Whether you’re up for an invigorating amble through native bush, a casual weekend wander with your dog, or an uphill ride or climb rewarded by epic views, you’ll find all of this and more in Porirua. Take your pick from our top five family-friendly trails below, tick one off your list, then re-energise with some local coffee and kai.
Wind your way through this stunning 110-hectare reserve on a cluster of walking and biking trails through lowland native forest. Adventure all the way from Titahi Bay to Ohariu Valley along mixed terrain and take in amazing views that stretch all the way from the Kaikōura Ranges to Mount Taranaki.
If it's a shorter walk you're after, or you just want to show-off your hometown to visiting friends, then Colonial Knob Walkway is the ideal place to start. Set your heart racing up several hundred steps, then pause to soak up sweeping views across the Porirua region.
Pack a picnic and make it a family day out on this fun loop trail for bikers and walkers in Battle Hill Forest Park. Meander through grassy farmland, stop and chat to the friendly sheep and cows, learn a bit of local history, and see if the kids can identify some of the native flora and fauna. Unpack your lunch at the summit of Battle Hill and enjoy epic views over Horokiwi Valley and Pāuatahanui inlet.
If you want to show-off your hometown to visiting friends and family, the Puketiro Loop - also located in Battle Hill Forest Park - is the ideal place to start. Saddle up a horse, lace up your shoes, or get your mountain bike at the ready, then weave uphill through mature pine forests to the summit - you'll be greeted with panoramic views across Pāuatahanui inlet and towards the South Island.
Ready to embark on an exhilarating 4-hour walk high above the Kāpiti Coastline? The Escarpment Track is one of the region’s finest walking experiences, featuring huge views all along the coast and across to Kāpiti Island. A great family memory for those adults and kids over eight years of age, but this trail is certainly not for the faint-hearted: you’ll scale around 1,200 steep steps, navigate narrow pathways across ridgelines, and traverse two swing bridges.
Pop your dog on a leash and head off on one of the region’s newest walking and mountain biking tracks. Spicer Trail is a great spot to hone your rookie riding skills, stretch your legs a little or link up with other trails in the area, including the Te Ara Tai Tonga trail.
Want to hire a mountain bike, get your own gear tuned-up, or head off on a guided trail tour? Hit up the friendly team at Get Fixed Bicycles in Porirua for expert advice, mechanics and maintenance, and lots of tips on riding in the local area.
If you’re looking for transport to the start of your next trail ride, local company Ride the Dirt will take you to the top of your favourite hills and be there to pick you up at the bottom. And if you want to squeeze in more than one run, they’ll be happy to rinse and repeat.
Need a good strong locally-brewed coffee to fuel your next trail adventure? Make a beeline for Local Authority - Porirua’s leading authority on the freshest grind. You’ll find cabinet treats, a tasty toast menu and other seasonal to set you up for your walk or ride.
If you’re after a takeaway lunch to tuck away for later, FILO offers a range of healthy salads, filos and other options ideal for on-the-go outdoor explorers.
Finish your trail excursion with a cold beverage, brunch or lunch at Peppermill in Porirua’s CBD. Choose from your favourite humble pub and cafe classics, and a selection of cold beers.
Keen to make Porirua your base for a night (or few)? There’s plenty of accommodation options in the local area with friendly hosts who are happy to store your trail riding and hiking equipment. This includes recently opened The Post Hotel, Mana Motel, Spinnaker Motel, Moana Lodge and 5 Diamond Belmont Motor Lodge.