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Discover Red Rocks' fascinating geology and Māori history.
On Wellington’s rugged south coast, just a 30 to 40 minute walk from Owhiro Bay you’ll discover the Red Rocks (Pari-whero). This is a coastal area of national significance with fascinating geology and Maori history.
The Red Rocks were formed 200 million years ago by undersea volcanic eruptions. Small amounts of iron oxides give the rocks their distinctive colouring.
The easy coastal walk extends to Sinclair Head, where there is a New Zealand fur seal colony. The colony can be seen from May to October.
In 2002 the New Zealand Historic Places Trust registered four baches (simple beach houses) at Red Rocks as historic areas. The baches, built in the early 1900s, have been kept in original form by their proud owners.
The Te Kopahou entranceway and visitor centre at the entry point to the reserve was crowned the supreme winner at the New Zealand Institute of Landscape Architects’ awards in 2015.
A visitors' guide to the south coast, produced by the South Coast Charitable Trust, is available from the Wellington i-SITE.