It’s very easy to miss or simply ignore the turnoff to Owharoa Falls as you drive on Highway 2, a scenic but deceptively twisty stretch of road between Paeroa and Waihi. While we wouldn’t call this a must do, if you’re not in a particular hurry or better yet, planning on cycling the Hauraki Rail Trail or visiting nearby Karangahake Gorge, it’s worth taking an extra few minutes to visit these pretty falls.
Owharoa is actually a series of three waterfalls but it’s the one closest to the Highway 2 end of Waitawheta Road that gets all the glory. At around 6m, it’s not particularly high but its distinctive upsidedown fan shape and moss covered steps do make for some pretty photos. As an added bonus it also makes for a nice picnic/swimming spot on a hot day.
On the subject of picnics, just nearby on Waitawheta Road we noticed the entrance to The Falls Retreat and being the inquisitive sort, we thought we’d check it out. What a stunning setting and a what looks like great place to stay, but what really piqued our interest was the rather rustic looking kitchen restaurant, The Bistro. Unfortunately it was closed when we popped in but we think a lunch there next time we’re in the area will definitely be in order.
Best of New Zealand
If you’re looking for ideas and inspiration for your next holiday, you should definitely check out our New Zealand Travel Guide. We’ve got practical advice to help you plan your trip and region guides to help you decide where to go and what to do. We also share some of our favourite experiences from our own travels around the country. Click below to find out more.