Red Rocks Coastal Walk

A 7.4km walk, taking 2-3hrs (return) along Wellington’s rugged south coast.

Experience the wildest part of Wellington’s rugged south coast- and one of Wellington’s most iconic walks. Meet the seals in winter just beyond Red Rocks at Sinclair Head-but don’t get too close!


This popular coastal route follows the rugged shoreline of the South Coast around to Red Rocks on Te Kopahou Reserve. Whether you’re on foot, riding your bike, or out for a day of recreational four-wheel driving, you’ll catch some amazing views, get to explore interesting rock formations and have the chance to see a colony of fur seals in their natural habitat during the winter months.

This easy, flat track will take you along the coast from Owhiro Bay Quarry, past a small group of historic baches built in the early 1900s, and out to Devil’s Gate at Sinclair Head.

Keep your distance from the seals and don’t walk between them and their ocean territory – these sometimes grumpy creatures need to be given plenty of space. Always keep your dog on a leash.

Tip: Try your luck on a Sunday – the track is closed to vehicles from 9am to 6pm which makes for an even quieter experience.


The trail starts from the car park located at the end of Owhiro Bay (at the entrance to Te Kopahou Reserve) and ends at the Devil’s Gate at Sinclair Head.

For a longer journey, head up the ridgelines of Te Kopahau Reserve and link onto Red Rocks Track to Hawkins Hill.


  • Parking:  Parking at Te Kopahou Visitor Centre carpark (at the end of Owhiro Bay Parade)
  • Toilets and changing facilities: Toilets at Te Kopahou Visitor Centre 


Dogs must be kept on leads. Keep dogs at least 20 metres from wildlife.