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Paihia - Russell Loop, Northland

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Paihia - Russell LoopBeginner

Submitted by Dan Boulton

Info Info
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Trail Information







Urban fringe


Undulating, small hills only

Native bush


2:45 (Slow)
2:00 (Moderate)
1:35 (Fast)



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Starting from Paihia, run along the beach front heading south. At the end of the beach take the headland around the rocks for about 1km until you reach the causeway. At the end of this cross the bridge and turn left and start the Awaroa Trail through to Opua, a great fast single track through great bush that takes you to the Opua car ferry. The ferry runs every 10 min and costs $1.

Getting off the ferry head up the hill for 300m and then turn left down a road with the sign saying walking track. At the bottom, look to your right for a sign which says Russell Walkway. This takes you all the way to Russell via some great bush single track and coastal boardwalks. At Russell stop for a coffee or a beer at the Duke of Marlborough before catching the ferry back to Paihia.

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Features of interest

Lots of amazing coastal views of the Bay of Islands. Two ferry rides (not included in the KM's or time above).

Make Up of Run

Moderate Single Track: 15%

Easy Single Track: 75%

Sealed Road: 10%

Route Data


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  • Access

    You can start at either Paihia or Russell, and run this clockwise or anti-clockwise

    Parking available at both places.

    0 km

    0 minutes



  • Staying Safe


    Make navigation of this route super-easy by using the Capra app on your phone. View on Capra .

    Generally good.

    Whistle, First aid kit, Extra food for emergencies, Cellphone, Map.

    Drinking fountains in Paihia and Russell, and a shop in Opua.

    Nil, good all year round trail. May need to consider high tide when heading south of Paihia.

  • Post run indulgence

    Duke of Marlborough
    Russell Waterfront
    Oldest pub in NZ, great location.

    Third Wheel Coffee shop
    Great coffee and cabinet food

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