Penguin Shipwreck Memorial Walk (Karori Cemetery)

A self-guided tour of grave sites at Karori Cemetery of people who died in the 1909 Penguin shipwreck.

The Penguin leaving Wellington.
The Penguin leaving Wellington

The inter-island ferry SS Penguin sank off Wellington's South Coast - a few kilometres from where the Wahine sank 60 years later. It was the worst New Zealand shipwreck that century. Forty of the 72 victims were buried at Karori Cemetery.


The walk takes between 1 and 2 hours to walk, depending on fitness.


The walk starts at the Hale Memorial. From the Main Chapel in Rosehaugh Avenue, cross the road, then the grassy area, then the road again to the Hale Memorial. Markers guide the walk, and the graves of Penguin victims are identified with a Penguin wreck marker. Follow the map in the brochure below.

Or explore the SS Penguin walk using our interactive storymap detailing the Graves and Walking Route

For public transport options, check the Metlink website.


Dogs must be on leads outside dog exercise areas. Please remember to clean up after your dog and dispose of the waste appropriately.