Visitor centre for locals as well


The Dunedin i-SITE and Department of Conservation Visitor Centre in the Octagon is your one-stop shop for information on getting in the great outdoors this summer.
The Department of Conservation has recently revamped its information on display in this space, making getting inspiration and information on local walks, activities and volunteer opportunities a breeze.
“Many locals think the i-SITE Visitor Centre is just for visitors. However, we are working hard to make it useful, relevant and engaging for locals as well,” community ranger supervisor Craig Wilson says.
At the i-SITE Visitor Centre you can also buy hut tickets, book Great Walks, make local and national activity and accommodation bookings and purchase maps and merchandise.
Whether you are looking for a short easy walk, a longer tramp or overnight camping, there is an array of places to explore without having to go far out of Dunedin. Head into the i-SITE Visitors Centre in the Octagon and pick up a Dunedin Walks Brochure, or talk to the staff for further information. We feature some of these walks on this page.

Taieri River Track
Easy Walking Track
Approximately 35 minutes from Dunedin City
This track and the Taieri Millennium track that it leads to allows you to walk from the river mouth through the lower Taieri Gorge and into the Taieri Plain.
Doing so takes you though several different types of vegetation (including native podocarp forest) in which you might see native forest, wetland and water birds.
Or you could just go as far as the John Bull Gully picnic area, and return the same way for great views of Taieri Mouth and Moturata/Taieri Island.
The coastal forest in the lower Taieri Gorge grows on a mix of fertile alluvial plains and dry, rocky slopes.  This gives it great variety; there are also several threatened plant species present, including the distinctive “fierce lancewood” and a native tree daisy with apricot-scented flowers.  The Taieri River and its tributaries are home to a range of native fish, including whitebait/inanga which rely on healthy riverside vegetation to spawn.
Controlling invasive weeds as well as goats and possums is important to keep this ecosystem healthy.
Getting there: To reach Taieri Mouth take the coastal road, south of Dunedin, via Green Island and Brighton to Taieri Mouth. Cross the bridge and turn right to reach the track start.

Huriawa Peninsula
Easy Walking Track
Approximately 40 minutes from Dunedin City
A legendary siege of the pa of Te Wera took place on this peninsula, and plaques along the way tell the history of the area and show the site of the old Waikouaiti Whaling Station and Tavern.
There are also spectacular cliffs, rock stacks and even a blowhole, along with fantastic views up and down the coast.
The peninsula was returned to Ngai Tahu in their treaty settlement and is owned by Kati Huirapa Runaka ki Puketeraki.
It’s a significant site that deserves respect, so please take care and do not leave litter.
Huriawa is a Kiwi Guardians site – check out the Kiwi Guardians website for an adventure map and ideas on what to do as a family.
Getting there: North of Dunedin, turn off SH1 on to Coast Rd, drive through Karitane and park at the Domain on Barvas St.

Trotters Gorge
Campsite and Tracks
Easy walking track and advanced walking track. Approximately 1 hour from Dunedin City
Get away from it all in this picturesque campsite, or just enjoy the walks. The Trotters Gorge walking track (30 minutes return) follows a creek through native broadleaf forest and arrives at a set of river sculpted caves.
The longer Trotters Loop Track (1.5 hours return) follows on from the Trotters Gorge Walking Track. It climbs up through kanuka forest and on to the bluffs for great views out to sea. The track then descends into native broadleaf forest and dry creek beds. This is a great place to see many of New Zealand’s bush birds.
Getting there: Approximately 3 km south of Moeraki, turn west off SH1 into Horse Range Rd, or turn on to Horse Range Rd at the north end of Palmerston. Sealed access.

The Pyramids and Okia
Easy Walking Track
Approximately 35 minutes from Dunedin City
A short walk along a flat farm track leads to The Pyramids – mounds of basalt from the days of active volcanism that formed the Otago Peninsula.
Continuing on through the dunes leads to Victory Beach – over 3km long, with a shipwreck at its southern end.
Between the beach and the Pyramids is a mosaic of new and old sand-dunes, wetlands and shrubland where yellow-eyed penguins/hoiho nest, and sea lions/pakake rest.
A range of native birds and lizards can also be found here.
The Yellow-eyed Penguin Trust and Dunedin City Council own the site, and undertake pest control to enhance its biodiversity.
Getting there: From Portobello continue on Harington Point Rd, turn right on to Weir Rd and a left on to Dick Rd where you will come to a small car park.

Easy Walking Track
Approximately 25 minutes from Dunedin City
This track has a wonderful mix of forest, river, native birds and scenery. From the Outram Glen car park it runs alongside the river, soon leading to a great family swimming/picnic area.
After this it gets steeper and rougher, with another hour’s walk leading to the confluence of Lee Stream and the Taieri River – another scenic spot ideal for lunch.
Getting there: Outram Glen is 23 km from Dunedin via Three Mile Hill. Approaching Outram township, turn right immediately after crossing the Taieri River Bridge. Stay on the gravel road that runs alongside the river to reach the car park