Activities – Bush Walks - Guthrie Cottage Holiday Home

Activities – Bush Walks

Eastbourne sits adjacent to the East Harbour Reserve.  This is largely native forest which escaped clearing by loggers when much of New Zealand was cleared for farmland in the 19th Century.

Much of the reserve is native bush still very much as it has been for centuries.  Some of the trees (particularly Kauri and Rimu) have been growing there before the first European ever set foot in New Zealand.

Butterfly Creek Picnic Area

This is the most popular walk and spot to have lunch.

The area was opened up to walkers in the 1930’s and was a very popular picnic area, even having a small shop selling tea and sandwiches in the late 1950’s.  Although today, there is no sign of the activity of yesteryear.  The area today has a few picnic tables, and a public toilet.  There is a natural swimming hole found by the stream.  No fires can be lit however a small camping stove is allowable.

The easiest way is up the Kowhai Street track over the saddle on the ridge and down to the valley floor.  This is a relatively easy walk – total walking time from the cottage is approximately 1.5 hours each way.  Refer to the map for directions from the cottage to the track.

For a slightly longer (2 hours from the cottage) and more picturesque walk, try the Muritai Park Track which takes you over the ridge with a view over the harbour from the summit down into the valley, and it has a beautiful walk beside Butterfly Creek meandering along the valley floor through the native bush.

Muritai Track

For those who wish simply to take a short walk from the cottage to the top of the ridge (approx 1/2 hour) for a view over Eastbourne and the harbour.  This makes a great morning walk before breakfast.  There is a seat at the top where you can sit looking out over the harbour while listening to bird calls from the surrounding bush.  There are also limited views in the other direction of the eastern ridge and the Orongorongo mountain ridge beyond.

The track is well found and of moderate grade.  There are two spots where a seat is provided to enjoy views out over Eastbourne and the harbour.  If a half hour walk to the ridge seems too far there is a 10 minute walk to the lookout with views over part of Eastbourne and the harbour.

Bus Barn Track

Butterfly Creek can also be reached via the track starting at the bus barns south of Eastbourne (approx 2 hours).  This affords wonderful views to the South including the South Island.

Point Howard Lookout

Probably the best view from the eastern hills is at Point Howard.  This point can almost be reached by car to the top of Howard Road.  A few minutes walk from the carpark takes you to the seat with 270º views over Eastbourne to the South Island across the harbour and over Petone and Lower Hutt.

Lowry Bay – Dillon Street Track

Lowry Bay contains some of New Zealands finest homes.  Eastbourne together with Lowry Bay was once the most expensive area in New Zealand to buy a home.

For a short walk (5 mins) up the Dillon Street track in Lowry Bay one can get a view down into the Bay where some of these beautiful houses and gardens can be admired.