Oakley Creek Waterfall is part of Unitec (Institute of Technology) area. It is the largest waterfall in urban Auckland.
The Oakley Creek Path, which leads to the waterfall, has a total length of
4.5 km. It is one of my favorite walks in Auckland, apart from Hobsonville Point. It takes about an hour to go through the entire route on foot. The waterfall is located in the middle of the path. The Te Auaunga (Oakley Creek) is one of Auckland's longest urban streams. While you go, you get a good physical activity, see the local plants and animals and go through shrubs and native bushes.
There are many places to enter the path: Phyllis Reserve, Heron Park and Great North Road. The path is narrow and has some steep and concrete stairs so no bikes or prams are recommended on the path.
The walkway stretches out through the established bush following a creek. The creek is part of Maori and European tradition with a great amount of exotic flora and fauna. The fauna includes a longfin eel that inhabits the creek, ducks that float randomly on water surface, birds that fly around in the trees and other species. This place is good for bird watching, bush walking, enjoying the view of the waterfall and being in a protected and preserved environment.
We started the path to the waterfall from the Auckland 16 motorway cycling road:
It then took about 10-15 minutes to go along the Oakley Creek and reach the waterfall. Along the way you enjoy views onto the creek, ducks, bushes, fallen trees and what not:
Finally, the waterfall, six-meter high, one of Auckland's best kept secrets. This is the highest urban waterfall in New Zealand, and the only waterfall in central Auckland! Take the down steps to look at the waterfall at a closer range. Do not attempt to swim in the water - the Friends of Oakley Creek is trying to preserve and improve water quality in this area.
Check the conditions as if it rains, the water levels can go high. Also take note of signs as some of the pathways might be closed for maintenance purposes.
The panoramic views open onto the water fall and its surrounding vegetation:
The waterfall is located in a dense bush, when climbing to a lookout point, the view is obstructed by leaves and trees.
Then you may head off onto Great North Road or explore further down to Phyllis Reserve or Heron Park.
There are awesome playgrounds for kids to explore after the outing. Waterview Reserve or Heron Park playgrounds may be good opportunities to go to relax after a great walk.