Billy Goat Falls


Billy Goat Falls

180m high, officially the tallest waterfall in the North Island, Billy Goat Falls is located in Kauaeranga Valley, Coromandel Peninsula. Despite the fact that only parts of the waterfall can be seen, the falls are still ones of the most impressive in the North Island.

Driving and walking conditions

GPS of the view point: S 37° 3' 32.2554" E 175° 40' 25.9536"
Parking: the end of Kauaeranga Valley Rd, Thames
Vehicle type: 4WD vehicle recommended Track type: Walking track
Road type:10km Gravel Road (poor road surface) Return track duration: 25min

Waterfall parameters

Waterfall height: 180m Type of the waterfall: Multi-step

Rating:       ⭐⭐⭐
GPS:          S 37° 3' 32.2554" E 175° 40' 25.9536"
Parking:     the end of Kauaeranga Valley Rd, Thames
Access:     25min return walk

Walking and driving instructions


Billy Goat Falls is roughly a 2-2.5 hours' drive away from Auckland or 45-60 minutes from Thames. Kauaeranga Valley Rd is not a well-maintained road with gravel surface as well as huge holes and cracks on it. There is an official sign at the road entrance saying that it's not a public road, the road is maintained by DOC and DOC takes no liability for the vehicles entering to this road. We highly recommend a 4-WD vehicle for this trip.

From Auckland travel south on the SH-1, then turn left on the SH-2, then left on the SH-25 which brings you to Thames. In Thames turn right into Banks St (well signposted) which becomes Parawai Rd. Eventually, this road becomes Kauaeranga Valley Rd. Follow this road until you reach the end of the road (roughly 18.5 km). There is a huge car park at the end of Kauaeranga Valley Rd. There are lots of different places to stay with toilets and picnic areas along the road.

A walking Billy Goat track (a part of Billygoat circuit) leads to the waterfall's lookout where you'll see a couple of falls' leaps from a distance. To take a good photo use a camera with a huge optical zoom. There is a suspension bridge in the middle of the walk which can be an exciting attraction for the kids. There is a junction after the bridge, turn right and walk for 3-5 more minutes before you'll see the falls.

There is one more option to see the top of the waterfall:

  • Billygoat circuit –  4-5 hours tramping circle track passes through the waterfall top. A fantastic view to the waterfall perfectly compensates 2 hours moderate climb then 2 hours of descent. 


Many thanks to Tony Searle for a couple of great photos (please refer to the logo photo and Gallery). 

Waterfalls nearby

Ngatea Water Gardens Waterfall

Rating:       ⭐⭐
Access:     10min return walk
Driving:   44.1 km (56 mins)

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The Seven Stairs to Heaven Waterfall

Rating:       ⭐⭐
Access:     30min return walk
Driving:   46.8 km (1 hour 4 mins)

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Photo Gallery

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