Wainamu Falls


Wainamu Falls

Wainamu Falls, also known as Waitohi Falls, is a series of small waterfalls located very close to one of the most popular beaches - Bethells Beach. Sand dunes, a warm lake, and a scenic walk make this waterfall just the right place to visit.

Driving and walking conditions

GPS of the view point: S 36° 53' 28.4922" E 174° 28' 40.0296"
Parking: Bethells Rd, Bethells Beach
Vehicle type: All vehicle types Track type: Walking track
Road type: Sealed Return track duration: 2hrs 

Waterfall parameters

Waterfall height: 5m Type of the waterfall: Cascade



Walking and driving instructions


Wainamu Falls is roughly a 50-minutes’ drive away from Auckland City. The road surface is always sealed.

From Auckland follow the main road which leads to Bethells Beach. The destination is a few hundreds of meters away from the popular Bethells Beach. The carpark is on your left immediately past the intersection of Bethells Rd and Tasman View Rd (with a sign ‘Lake Waimanu Track’). There are no facilities there. Toilets and picnic tables are available at the official Bethells Beach parking area.

From here follow Lake Wainamu Track which leads to the lake and goes around the lake as well. The first part of the track follows the riverbed of the Waiti Stream (a wet-shoes walk) until it meets the lakeshore. As an alternative, walk directly to the lake over the sand dunes.

If you’ve got kids, they will have lots of fun sliding from the top of the dunes – so bring a body board or skim board, and don’t forget towels because the lake is a very popular swimming spot and the water is much warmer than in the ocean. A long-drop toilet is available next to the lake.

The second part of the track is a loop walk around the lake. In the middle of the loop, where the track crosses the Wainamu Stream, you need to turn to a short side track. In a couple of minutes, you will see the lower waterfall (on the main photo). Cross the stream and climb to the top of the waterfall, then you'll see two smaller falls. Here, you can find a couple of swimming holes which are less popular compared to the lake.

Return via the same track, or continue to make the full loop. The whole walk takes roughly 2 hours.

Don’t be disappointed! Wainamu Falls is a type of waterfalls which may have little or no water at all during a dry summer. Hence, if the summer is dry with no rain for a few weeks, please don’t expect to see a powerful waterfall.


Waterfalls nearby (driving)


Attractions nearby


There is a plenty of places you can visit there. The first and the most popular one is, of course, Bethells Beach – a surfing paradise.

The second one is Wainamu Lake - a perfect warm swimming spot.

The third place is the dunes between Bethells Beach Rd and Waimanu Lake.

Apart from the track described above you can walk Houghton Track which branches from the Lake Wainamu Track somewhere in the middle of the track.


Photo Gallery