Otipua Wetlands Walk

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From the bridge over Saltwater Creek, follow the track towards the coastline. Cross over the wooden bridge you encounter shortly after passing the rowing club. Follow the track along the north side of Saltwater Creek.

The track is mostly straight until it curves towards the left with the creek. Continue to follow the track until you reach the bridge, which you will cross. Head right and pass the railway bridge. Follow the track as it veers right along the south side of Saltwater Creek.

It is on this side of the Creek that you will notice the wetlands and the restorative work that has been put into them. In order to form a Kahikatea forest in the future, volunteers have planted a variety of native trees, sedges and tussock.

As you approach the Y-intersection near the lake, take the track on the left to wind your way around the lake. This lake is home to many varieties of local and migratory birds.

The route around the lake is across swampland. It slowly winds its way in a zigzag pattern back towards Saltwater Creek. Finally, follow the creek back to the main road.

Quick Facts

        • Location: Timaru, South Island, New Zealand
        • Time needed: 1 hour walk
        • Distance: 4 km
        • Difficulty: Easy
        • Bikes allowed: Unknown
        • Route: Loop
        • Elevation: Unknown (slight rises)
        • Wet Feet: Part of this walk is through swampland.
        • Toilets: No
        • Dogs: Yes, on a leash
        • Mobile Coverage: Yes, very good
        • Last Updated: June, 2020
  • Track Highlights

    It is rewarding to see the restorative work of the wetlands while enjoying the views of the plants and the birds. Beautiful sunsets can also be viewed from this walk.

  • Track Quality

    This track is well-gravelled, though gumboots are necessary when stepping onto side paths.

  • Hazards


  • Transport

    Timaru is a stop on InterCity’s bus network. However, the start of the walk is a 40 minute walk from central Timaru.

  • Water


  • Driving Instructions

    Head south on King St/SH1 until you reach the Saltwater Creek bridge. This is where the walk starts, on the north side of the bridge.

  • Shops or Restaurants nearby

    There are shops and restaurants in central Timaru.

  • Area & Track History

    The Otipua Wetland Trust bought the wetland in 1997. Several authorities and organisations wanted to restore it to its former beauty from the (once described) wasteland it had become. With the help of volunteers, the wetlands have been transformed due to replanting projects. The work is still ongoing.

  • Camping & huts on or near the walk

    No camping on this walk

Map of Otipua Wetlands Walk

Here is the map for Otipua Wetlands Walk showing it’s location in New Zealand. You can change the view on the map to satellite if you prefer to see an image of where the walk is instead.

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