Heritage Walks about Central Auckland
Parnell Trust offers a unique programme of heritage walks around the historic central Auckland suburbs of Parnell, Grafton, Newmarket, Epsom and Auckland University's campus.
Read a summary of all our walks below.
Parnell Trust runs a full programme of guided walks during the annual Auckland Heritage Festival, which runs for two weeks in September and/or October. Look for information on the Festival programme and our website.
Parnell Trust's walks are led by knowledgeable guides who provide interesting commentary and anecdotes on local heritage treasures and the people that shaped these central Auckland suburbs.
Private Guided Heritage Walks can be booked for groups at any time of the year, depending on availability of our guides. Please contact us at 09 555 5164 for enquiries.
Many of our walks are also available as self-guided podcasts, as noted in the description of our walks series below.
Stroll about New Zealand's oldest park exploring both history and art. Auckland Domain is located on one of Auckland's first volcanoes and its vantage point overlooking the harbour has made it a focal point for both Maori and European settlers. This glorious park is richly endowed with sculptures and heritage buildings. Allow 2 hours.
Download the podcast and take the walk
Auckland University Campus Stories
Inaugurated in 1883, the University of Auckland grew around the grounds of Old Government House. Over time, many of the original buildings in the vicinity have been added. Today 40,000 students attend the University and the campus sprawls over several blocks from its prominent location above Auckland's CBD. Allow 1.5 hours.
Epsom - In the Zone
Discover a hidden corner of Auckland nestled on the slopes of Mt Eden, above Newmarket. Iconic homesteads feature lovely gardens nurtured from harsh terrain. Auckland Grammar School exerts its influence on local real estate as Aucklanders vie to be in this historic Grammar zone. Allow 1.5 hours. (Download the podcast on Soundcloud. )
Perhaps best known for its bridge, the suburb of Grafton extends from Symonds Street to the Domain and out towards Mt Eden. This 2.2 km walk takes in one of Auckland's most significant cemeteries and provides background on heritage buildings, both residential and public. Allow 1.5 hours. (Download the podcast on Soundcloud. )
This Parnell walk includes many sites of interest covering both Maori and European settlement, the beginnings of Bishop Selwyn's Anglican expansion and a plotted history of early residents as we visit the graves surrounding St Stephens. Allow 1.5 hours. (Download the podcast on Soundcloud.)
Once sale yards for livestock and a major manufacturing and warehousing centre, it has undergone a series of transformations. Examples of heritage buildings between the 1850s and the 1960s. Allow 1.5 hours. (Download the podcast on Soundcloud.)
Streams and Gullies
A walk through the bush-clad gullies of Parnell. The trail links five separate reserves, including the foreshore of Hobson Bay. Requires a good to above-average level of fitness. Not suitable for prams and buggies. Allow 1.5 hours.
( Download the podcast on Soundcloud.)
Treasures & Delights of Parnell
Fringed by the waterfront and the Domain, Parnell is New Zealand's oldest suburb and the influential early base of the Anglican church. Stroll down streets lined with colonial houses and steeped in Auckland's history. Allow 2.5 hours.
( Download the podcast on Soundcloud.)
Parnell Parks and People (Guided Walk only)
Take a trip to Brighton Road and explore the area and its parks, natural history, archaeology, architectural contrast and stories. Meet at Jubilee Building, 545 Parnell Road, Parnell. Limited to 20. Allow 1.5 hours
Riverhead Heritage Fruit Tour (Guided Walk only)
Walk around three acres of flowering heritage fruit trees - 200 plum, 150 apple and 50 pear trees. Murray Joyce and Rob Velseboer of Heirloom Organix have been nurturing these trees for 15 years and grow organic culinary herbs and heirloom vegetable seedlings. Allow 1.5 hours
Tangirapaki - Hillside of Weeping Waters (Guided Walk only)
Take a unique Parnell walk, down a hill side to Hobson Bay to see sights including historic Kinder House and Ewelme Cottage. Enjoy interesting vintage houses from the 1880s to the 1940s as well as a pre European village site, park land and native bush. Meet at Jubilee Building, 545 Parnell Road, Parnell. Limited to 20. Allow 1.5 hours
While Parnell Trust and our volunteer walk leaders have taken due care with the content of these walks, the podcasts are not intended as a substitute to an academic record of local history.