NZ Lifestyle Magazine Group



The knobbly, rocky thumb of Tokatoka Peak is hard to miss when driving between Rūāwai and Dargaville. The distinct landmark is a favourite with locals and visitors to the region, thanks to the summit's knee-knocking 360° views. Tokatoka (toka is “rocks” in te reo) is a precariously placed ancient volcanic plug that overlooks the Northern Wairoa River. Tales tell of the landmark as a lookout for incoming ships, a lovers' escape and, in Māori legend, one of five brothers who crossed the island from the East to West Coast. They were searching for toheroa but got into difficulty crossing the river. The five peaks in the region mark each brother's resting place, including that of Tokatoka. The track is short but steep, especially the last 20m, which may require a crawl/climb combination. It can be found off Tokatoka Road, which turns off by the Tokatoka Pub (they keep the naming of roads/ businesses simple around here). There's a small parking area and shoe-cleaning station at the beginning of the track.