The Grove Scenic Reserve – a Golden Bay hidden gem

Rock formations at The Grove

With so many excellent short walks in Golden Bay, it is hard to choose a favourite. However, the Grove Scenic Reserve is a strong contender for the hidden gem award. The magical grove walk makes you feel like you have stepped back in time. Though there are many impressive Golden Bay attractions, the unique landscape found at The Grove Takaka makes it a place you should add to your must-visit list.

Visiting The Grove, Golden Bay

The thing that we find really cool about the Grove Scenic Reserve is that when you are driving along past the houses and farmland, you don’t know that just metres from the main road is a lush and otherworldly grove. 

The Grove scenic reserve

We drove past The Grove many times on our way to our Takaka accommodation base in Pohara. But we didn’t know, The Grove, a Golden Bay hidden gem, was there. 

Once we discovered the Grove in the Takaka area, we were blown away by the ancient limestone rocks and old native trees. So, we have written this article about the fascinating walk at the Grove Takaka and what you can see there.

The Grove Scenic Reserve

The Grove Scenic Reserve walk is a short 30-minute return walk via a loop track and is 1km in length. It can be done in 15 minutes if you’re in a rush and don’t stop for long to take photos.

New Zealand’s Department of Conservation classes the Grove walk as Easiest: Short walk. This makes it a walk that even people who don’t like walking can do.

When we were there, we encountered no one on the trail, which added to the surreal feeling of the place. 

The grove trail

The magical thing about the Grove Scenic Reserve is that you feel like you have entered a remote jungle in a Jurassic world as soon as you step inside.

The trail nestled amongst unique limestone formations & karst walls leads you through bush-clad mossy rock structures.

The dense woodlands of native New Zealand bush are among the limestone rocks and include nikau palm trees, ferns, and northern rata. Additionally, there is lots of birdlife.

Bush walk at The Grove in Golden Bay

The Grove track highlights are the massive limestone rocks and outcrops, some of them mossy boulders and others draped with tentacle-like roots of the northern rata. The rocks shaped by time and water into unique sculptures give the reserve an otherwordly atmosphere

The Grove trail climaxes when you walk through a narrow slot between two massive rocks with enormous roots growing. You then climb the stairs to a platform that extends from the rockface. The panoramic view is of the surrounding countryside and farmland and across the waters of Golden Bay.

Viewing platform at The Grove

How to get to The Grove Scenic Reserve

The Grove is 8 km from Takaka and under 10 minutes drive.

To get to the Grove from Takaka, drive along Abel Tasman Drive to Clifton, turn right onto Clifton Road, then right onto Rocklands Road. 

Search “the grove Takaka” in Google Maps to get more detailed directions. Alternatively, the address is 14 Rocklands Rd, Clifton.

You will find a car park at the reserve entrance.

Rock outcrops

The Grove, Takaka essential information

Entry is free.

There is a small picnic area. It is a lovely spot to have lunch among the Northern rata tree growing over the rocks.

The Grove track is a flat stroll for much of the way, and the parts where the path ascends upwards is an easy gradual climb.

There is a small number of stairs to the viewing platform at the end.

The grove limstone rocks

Be careful after rain as the Grove trail can get muddy and slippery, especially on the narrow parts of the track. 

Additionally, there are steep bluffs and drop-offs, so keep your children by you at all times.

The Grove Takaka views

Other things to do near The Grove & Takaka

If you love rocks and otherworldly structures, make sure to visit Labyrinth Rocks. Labyrinth Rocks Park Easy Walk Offers Epic Rock Landscapes & An Otherworldly Atmosphere.

For lovers of short trails with epic water views, you will love Wainui Falls. It is the largest waterfall in Nelson/Golden Bay. Travellers Love the Short Walk to Wainui Falls in Golden Bay, New Zealand. Also, you pass many fascinating rock structures on the way there, and you even drive through an impressive arch!

If walking through the lush forest is the thing you love to do on your travels, you can fit in all three walks in one day. Total walk time is 3 hours, and you can drive from Takaka to all three walks within a 1-hour return trip.

Make sure to allocate an hour for lunch and an additional 30 minutes for impromptu photographic stops on the scenic drive. We recommend one of the cafe/restaurants at Pohara for lunch. Additionally, Pohara is a great place to take stunning beach photos. 

Limestone rock landscape at The Grove

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We love to travel and have travelled around New Zealand for over 20 years. Our goal is to give you ideas on where to go, what to see and find fun things for you to do. If you want to read more about adventures in New Zealand, please subscribe here so you don’t miss our upcoming posts. 

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