New Zealand

Te Rua Manga (The Needle), Rarotonga

  • Popular cross island day hike
  • Stunning views of a tropical island
How To Get There
The track northern end point is approximately five kilometers out of the main town, Avarua. Travel east from the town and then turn left at a fork, and follow this road for four past the Power Station to the start of the track. The southern end point is at Wigmore's Waterfall only a couple of kms from the main circuit road around the island.
Tramping Time and Distances
Northern End Point to Te Rua Manga
Time: 1.5 hours
Distance: 1 km (approximately)
Te Rua Manga to Wigmore's Waterfall
Time: 2 hours
Distance: 3 kms (approximately)
Grade: Medium, a strenuous climb at the start in either direction
Tramp Description
It is advisable to complete this track from north to south as the northern climb is the shortest yet the steepest. Also following the track is difficult at the southern end, not a problem when descending, but may make a difficult start to an ascent.
Please note that the track passes through private land at various points. From the northern end point, the track leads along a very pleasant grassy walkway for ten minutes before entering into bush.
It is here that the climb to Te Rua Manga begins. The climb is steep and trampers have to be careful when making their over tree roots.
After an hour from the start a junction is reached at a saddle. The track to the right leads to the base of Te Rua Manga, approximately five minutes away. From the base there are stunning views all around the island. Other peaks such as Te Kou and Te Manga (the highest peak) can be clearly seen to the east. Also watch out for a cockerel that lives nearby, surviving on the scraps provided by trampers!
Back at the junction two tracks lead to Wigmore's Waterfall, follow the one that headed straight ahead as you climbed up from the northern starting point. This track leads steadily downward sometimes through dense bush, sometimes in the open with more stunning views. After about an hour the track starts to run along the true right of Papua Stream. There are many sidetracks to the stream, always follow the track that runs parallel. This will eventually lead to the stream itself.
After approximately two hours, Wigmore's Waterfall and swimming hole is reached. The swimming hole is most welcome after the hike across the island.
Please note that water, insect repellant and sun-block are absolute musts for this trip.
Track Gradient
No gradient image available.
Tramp Map
No map available.
Tramping Photos

Te Kou from The Needle

Close up of Te Rua Manga

A refreshing swim at the end of the track

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