• Timber trail
  • Ongarue spiral
  • Unique lodging


  • by car:

    1 hr 48 min from Hamilton Airport

  • by car:

    1 hour from Te Kuiti

  • by car:

    19 min from Taumarunui 

Ongarue is a tiny village on the Timber Trail route, the picturesque Ngā Haerenga Great Ride in the Ruapehu and Waikato regions.

If you love walking or cycling, you'll love the Timber trail(opens in new window). And chances are, if you love places that seem like they've been forgotten by time, you'll love Ongarue.

Ongarue was once a major player in the pioneering native timber industry, particularly rimu. Felled trees were moved out until the 1940s on bush tram routes, old paths cut into the forest.

The Ellis and Burnard tram route is one of the last left in the country, and you'll be cycling through history and pristine bush as it is now part of the Timber Trail. 

One of the most impressive sections is the Ongarue spiral, where you go over a bridge, through a very deep cutting, a curved tunnel, a complete circle of track, and an over-bridge.  

Stop for the night in Ongarue, using one of the local operators to ferry your gear or pick you up.

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