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Espresso Love, Auckland

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Espresso LoveBeginner - Intermediate

Submitted by Jonathan Drake

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Trail Information









Undulating, small hills only


Beginner - Intermediate

4:00 (Slow)
2:40 (Moderate)
1:50 (Fast)



Current Status November 2022: The North end of the Grafton Cycleway is currently closed. Short signposted detour up Symonds St is required until further notice.

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This route is a concept run based on the idea of visiting some of Auckland’s best inner cafes while exploring urban trails along cycleways and urban parks. Far too ‘roady’ for a classic WT route, this is the adventure if you want the trails mild but the espresso wild!

Obviously, all and any of the coffee stops is an option and not a requirement of this route, but they are there for your enjoyment if desired. Café #1 Wintergarden Pavilion Head down the hill and Lover’s Lane on to Domain Drive, cross Stanley Street, and up Grafton Road before following the cycleway to Upper Queen Street.

A short section of road here takes you to the cycleway alongside Ian Mckinnon Drive – be aware that this is not a shared path so technically a pedestrian has no rights here, but you can proceed cautiously – then on to the cycleway shared path alongside the NW Motorway. Follow the cycleway until the bottom of New Bond Street, below the Bond Street bridge.

Proceeding up New Bond St brings you to Café #2 The Bakers Cottage (or Atomic Roasters down the road for a better coffee but some road-crossings) then follow New North Road to cross Bond Street then proceed through Nixon Park to rejoin the NW cycleway and follow this to Carrington Road, then to the Point Chevalier shops and Café #3 Daily Bread.

From here follow Huia and Tui Roads then through Pasadena Reserve and to Western Springs Park. Skirt past the zoo following the path up to Old Mill Road, with the option of crossing here to take in Café #4 Coffee Defora before following Old Mill Road down to Savage Street and through Jaggers Walk, crossing Meola Road into Leamington Reserve. Head straight through the reserve avoiding the left or right tracks to exit right on Leamington Road in the direction of the Westmere shops and Café #5 Seabreeze.

From here proceed in the same direction along West End Road and through Cox’s Bay Road. After the trail crosses the creek take the branch left up the hill to Hukanui Crescent and follow this into Hukanui Reserve. Up past the small surprise urban waterfall then follow Bayfield Road and Buller Street to head north-east on Jervois Road to Café #6 Dear Jervois.

From here drop down one of the side streets running down towards the coast above Herne Bay, then right towards Point Erin, before following the path down to and under the Harbour Bridge and arriving at Café #7 Buoy The Westhaven Pathway will then take you to the laneways of Wynyard Quarter where you find Café #8 Williams Eatery Proceed around the Viaduct and along Quay Street. Popping into Britomart Place you find Café #9 La Petite Fourchette (great coffee so ranked over the neighbouring Espresso Workshop).

Continue along Quay Street before proceeding up Gladstone Road and through the Parnell Rose Gardens. Further along Gladstone Road, you find Café #10 Rosie From Gladstone Road make your way along Stratford then Staffa streets through Alberon Reserve, and down the hill to St Georges Bay Road.

Follow this north briefly before entering Scarborough Reserve then into the side-streets of Parnell heading directly up to Parnell Road and across to Café #11 Biskit Proceed down the hill towards the Parnell rail station then pass this as you cross back into Auckland Domain, following the trail until the steps bring you out near Domain Drive.

Cut across the grass here to arrive back at Café #12 Wintergarden Pavilion (take 2!)

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Features of interest

There's a couple of surprises of creeks and small waterfalls where you least expect them.

Make Up of Run

Untracked / Route only: 1%

Easy Single Track: 70%

Sealed Road: 29%

Route Data


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  • Access

    Auckland Domain at the corner of Kiosk Road and The Crescent, near the Wintergarden Pavilion.

    Bus routes run along nearby Park and Parnell Roads as well as to Auckland Museum. There is plenty of public parking in The Domain, but be careful of time constraints.



  • Staying Safe


    Perfect throughout.

    Extra food for emergencies, Cellphone.

    There are water fountains at Cox’s Bay Reserve, Westhaven, and Wynyard Quarter. Or stop in at any of the handy cafes on the route.


    There are water fountains at Cox’s Bay Reserve, Westhaven, and Wynyard Quarter. Or stop in at any of the handy cafes on the route.

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