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Easy | 2 hours return


The track is close to SH38, approximately 10kms south of Te Kura Whenua - Visitor Centre on SH38 to Wairoa.


The Onepoto Caves (also known as Te Ana-o-Tawa Caves) were well known to the Māori people of the Lake Waikaremoana area. Oral history tells of Tuwai, a warrior chief of Ngāti Ruapani, who slew five men who tried to overcome him while he slept in one of the caves. Another story tells of the time that Tuwai and some of his people took refuge from a Kahungunu taua (war party) in Te Ana-o-Tawa. Tuwai, placing himself at the narrow entrance to the cave, defeating the enemy one by one as they tried to enter.

The caves were formed by the same upheaval that created Lake Waikaremoana some 2,200 years ago. The caves range from small cavities and rock overhangs to deep recesses and tunnels up to 50 m long.


Take a torch if you intend to explore the caves as they have little natural light. . Use the photo opportunities and enjoy the amazing views over Lake Waikaremoana.

Where to find the iSITE

Physical Address: 9 Paul Street, Wairoa 4108
Postal Address: PO Box 54, Wairoa 4160, Hawke’s Bay
Opening Hours:
Weekdays 8:30 am - 4:30 pm
Weekends and public holidays 10:00 am - 4:00 pm
CLOSED Christmas Day

Contact us

0800 HAWKES BAY (429537 229)
and press 3 for Wairoa

+64 6 838 7440
+64 6 838 3901

9 Paul Street, Wairoa 4108
PO Box 54, Wairoa 4160, Hawke’s Bay
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