A Short Walk Guide: Botanic Garden-Albemarle Reserve-Ōtari
Take a No. 2 Karori bus to near the Botanic Garden Founders’ Gates. Walk past the toilet block, cross the bridge over Pipitea¹ Stream to the duck pond, then past Pūriri Lawn. Go toward the Magpie Lawn sign, then up the broad path past the brown fence and garage on your left and Pipitea¹ Stream on your right, and continue up to Glenmore Lawn.
Leave the garden by the white gate. Cross Glenmore St at the pedestrian crossing then climb Orangi Kaupapa Rd, a cul-de-sac leading to a path up to Garden Rd opposite the former Gapes’ quarry – note the two houses at its base! Walk up Garden Rd for 40 m, then cross it to the path to Military Rd. Climb the path through bush beside a tiny tributary of Pipitea¹ Stream. On the opposite slope look for traces of the bench track used by colonial constabulary en route to the 1880s-era garrison in Karori. Ten metres past the telephone pole with the plaque Historic Route – Track to Karori take the path to your right at the four-way junction. From Seaview Tce enjoy the view of the Tararua and Remutaka ranges, East Harbour Regional Park, Te Whanganui-a-Tara¹ and the capital city. Walk past Northland Park up Seaview Tce to its intersection with Northland Rd, Orangi-kaupapa Rd and Pembroke Rd. Walk down the latter to Albemarle Rd, then down it past Northland Kindergarten to the Project Kaiwharawhara interpretation panel. Take the track into Albemarle Reserve, an attractive area of mostly native bush, either side of a creek which is a tributary of the Te Mahanga¹ branch of Kaiwharawhara Stream.
From the end of the track near Bowen Early Childhood Education Centre, walk along the lower end of Albemarle Rd to Wilton Rd. Turn right past Cardinal McKeefry School’s fence, cross the road at the pedestrian crossing then walk c. 200 m north along Wilton Rd to opposite the bottom of Worcester St. Descend the path towards Ian Galloway Park. Walk along the north side of the park fence to the gap, then along the south side of the fence to the path down to a road. Turn right to reach the Western Suburbs Rugby Club building. Opposite it spot the way-marker at the start of the track down valley to Ōtari-Wilton’s Bush. At first the track traverses the well-vegetated north face of the former Walworth Road Tip on which Ian Galloway Park was built. The track continues down the valley of Te Mahanga¹ stream through attractive bush. From Ōtari’s Troup Picnic area and toilets, continue down valley on the Circular Walk a.k.a. Sanctuary-to-Sea Walkway to the Northern Picnic Area. From the parking area, climb right up Churchill Drive to an Izard Park sign on a lamp post on the other side of the road. Climb the steps to the park then traverse it to the bus stop at the foot of Norwich St, Wilton. No. 22 Mairangi/Northland buses travel to Wellington Station.
A BBB trip - boots recommended. ¹ The Great Harbour of Tara. G. Leslie Adkin. 1959. Whitcombe and Tombs Ltd.
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- Chris Horne (scribe).