Coast to Coast Ride

When you visit us at Pakiri Beach, you can experience the freedom of this special place on horseback. Our rides cover everything from a relaxed one hour outing to a full day or longer.

All our rides travel along the pristine sands of Pakiri Beach and continue through the dunes with breath taking views to the coastal islands. We ride through groves of ancient Pohutukawa trees, which are ablaze with red flowers in summer. And we follow a track through native bush and Nikau palms.

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Pick up from Auckland City, travelling by shuttle bus and arriving at Pakiri Beach at around 1:30pm.

  • Introductory beach ride, so you can get to know your horse.
  • Dinner at Stables Café, with your hosts Laly and Sharley Haddon.
  • Overnight accommodation in beach house.

After a hearty breakfast depart for a full day’s riding.

  • Ride along white sand beach and through dunes with magnificent views to the Hen and Chickens Islands, Moko Hinau and Great and Little Barrier Islands - the mythical floats on the net of Toi, our ancestor who first followed the whale calls to this land.
  • Stop for lunch by the fresh water Tomarata lakes in the pine forest, or at Te Arai beach.
  • Ride through ancient Pohutukawa groves and along a native bush track, where you can see the Nikau, the southernmost-growing palm tree.
  • Accommodation: stay overnight at Ngapeka Beach House

Today we ride over green farmland and through native rainforest.

  • Follow an old kauri logging track through Whangaripo Valley to the top of the Matakana Hill.
  • Pass through beef cattle and sheep farms, learning about the interesting history of Te Whio sheep farm.
  • Homestay accommodation (shared bunkroom). Our hosts are a warm and friendly alternative lifestyle family who live high above a valley on the edge of the State Forest and near the source of the Hoteo River. Alternative accomodation can be arranged at your own expense.
  • Route may change if conditions are unfavorable.



A more leisurely ride through the Carter Holt Harvey Dome State Forest.

  • Ride through pine forest and some native bush, following logging roads and over picturesque farmland to Spring Hill Stud Farm.
  • After settling the horses we may visit El Tapora, a small town bar in Wellsford where you can choose to have dinner at your own expense.
  • Accommodation at a lovely homestay in Wellsford with Jeannie and her dog Pocket. If the group is too large for Jeannie to host, we will stay at a motel.
  • Route may change if weather or logging conditions are unfavorable and render this ride unsafe.

Depart Spring Hill Farm in the morning, following the Hoteo River as it passes under State Highway One.

  • Travel over Whisky Hill Farm and along the tree-lined edge of the Hoteo River.
  • Enter the Carter Holt Harvey Kaipara State Forest, where we ride along logging tracks through the pines.
  • Stop for lunch by the pretty Awarere waterfall, where you can swim in the clear water pool under the falls.
  • Continue on through pine forest, possibly meeting some locals on the way.
  • Accommodationis at Willow lodge with Colin and Vicki in their lovely colonial style lodge a few minutes drive from where we keep our horses on the Kaipara hills.
  • As with Day 4, if the guides deem the ride unsafe we may have to take an alternative route.

Today we ride over beautiful hill country farms, with spectacular views to both coasts.

  • Stop for lunch at a beautiful secret waterfall, where you can swim in the cool, fresh pool beneath the falling water.
  • Follow the Hoteo River as it continues towards path to its mouth in the West.
  • Ride over Mt. Taranaki, the sister mountain to Mt. Auckland (Atuanui), along a remote dirt road through rugged hill country with views to the West Coast and the large and treacherous Kaipara Harbour.
  • From the top of the highest ridge we ride along, you may be able to see Auckland’s Sky Tower.
  • Makarau means to catch with a net, which was how the early Maori caught much of their food. The early settlers used the Makarau river to float Kauri logs down to the harbour from the inland forests. From there, they were taken by sailing ship to Europe to be used as spars or were sawmilled at Helensville.

After breakfast we load the horses on to a truck and drive a short distance to Rimmer Rd, Helensville, to ride through Woodhill Forest.

  • You may see fallow deer or wild pigs as we ride to Muriwai beach and its breathtaking surf and black sands.
  • Take a gallop down the beach if the tide is out.
  • Enjoy lunch in the forest, before riding back through the pine forest to the truck.
  • We farewell the horses, then drive you back to Auckland.