Whangarei is 160km, two hours drive north of Auckland on State Highway 1. The nearest city is Whangarei, which is 10-minutes’ drive from the falls.
Whangarei Falls, also known as Otuihau, is located in Whangarei Scenic Reserve. This beautiful curtain waterfall is is 26.3 meters (85 feet) high and falls over basalt lava flow cliffs.
The base of the falls is known as an area of healing and once used for washing the wounded and dead for local Maori people.
The falls have been a popular destination for picnics and recreation since the 1890s until the land was bought by Mr Archibald Clapham in the late 1920’s, who owned Clapham’s Clocks.
He didn’t want the land to become commercially exploited, but it was eventually sold to the local Businessmen’s Association who turned it into a public park 1946 for the local residents.