Bridal Veil Falls, New Zealand

Bridal Veil Falls in May 2011

The North Island of New Zealand has a number of really great waterfalls. Wairere Falls and Marokopa Falls are impressive, and Bridal Veil Falls is another to add to the list.

At 180′ tall, Bridal Veil Falls has many things going for it. In addition to its height, it’s also surrounded by lush greenery. You also have a number of different options for viewing the falls. There’s not really a great view at the base, but as you start walking down the trail (which I think has stairs), you’ll start getting a better view. The picture here is from a third to half way down the trail. You’ll also get a great view from the base, and a bridge leads over the river. The waterfall was relatively powerful, so you’ll experience a lot of spray at the base.

Directions:

  1. From NZ-39 at Whatawhata, head west along NZ-23 for just over 26 kilometers.
  2. Turn left onto Te Mata Road and drive for about 7 km.
  3. Take a left turn to continue on Te Mata Road for 2.5 km more.
  4. Take a slight left onto Kawhia Road and drive for 3.5 km. You’ll see a sign for Bridal Veil Falls and a parking area.

Accessibility: 7/10 (easy/moderate, some stairs)
Height: 180′
Length of Hike: 0.8 miles round-trip

Where in the World is Bridal Veil Falls?

Marokopa Falls, New Zealand

The popular tall waterfalls are on the South Island of New Zealand.  The North Island has got its impressive waterfalls, too.  Marokopa Falls is much wider than any of the falls I saw on the South Island.  It’s not as tall, though, so I guess to some that may be disappointing?  Not to me!

Getting to the falls is a beautiful journey.  I did have some interesting travels down very isolated dirt roads, but in the end, I got to the falls.  There is an “easier” way to get to the falls, but it doesn’t as easily connect Marokopa Falls to Bridal Veil Falls, which is not that far away as the crow flies, but more distant driving-wise.  Once you get to the parking lot for the falls, it’s only a short walk down to the viewpoint.  At the viewpoint, you might try and getting to the base.  I decided against this not because of danger, but instead because it was one of the muddiest descents I have seen in a while.  I’m not opposed to getting muddy, but this was just a little too much!  At the time, the spray was intense, even from a few hundred feet away!

Directions:

  1. From NZ-3, head west on Waitomo Caves Rd (aka NZ-37).
  2. NZ-37 turns into Te Anga Road after going through a roundabout a short distance from the Waitomo Caves.
  3. Head some distance further to the parking area for the falls, which will be on your left.  Along the way, you will have passed some other interesting points, including the Mangapohue Natural Bridge, along with a cave (that I can’t remember the name of) that was free to visit, but surprisingly dark and creepy.

Accessibility: 9/10 (easy)
Height: 98′
Length of Hike: 0.4 miles round-trip

Marokopa Falls in May 2011

Where in the World is Marokopa Falls?

Unnamed Falls, Waikato Region, New Zealand

Unnamed Falls in May 2011

I’m not really sure how to describe this waterfall, considering I don’t really know it’s exact location. I was driving from Bridal Veil Falls (40 minutes from Hamilton) to Marokopa Falls. My GPS took me along some long stretches of unpaved road. I finally got onto some paved (sealed) road in farmland, and out of the corner of my eye, saw this small waterfall plunging to the left of me. I really couldn’t stop right there, so I turned around (which can be difficult on these winding roads). I zoomed in to the falls while stopped on the road for a few seconds. It’s not a very busy road, but if you can find another place to pull of for just a second, that might be the best option. That is if you can find the falls?

Directions: Well…It’s on a paved road somewhere between Bridal Veil Falls and Marokopa Falls. Along the way, I believe I took Kawhia Rd. to Harbor Rd., then Te Wairere Road to get to Marokopa Falls. It might have been off of one of those roads?

Accessibility: 10/10 (easy)
Height: ~40′
Length of Hike: roadside

Where in the World is Unnamed Falls?