Walking & Tramping

Catlins River-Wisp Loop Track

Catlins Road, Tawanui

The Catlins River-Wisp Loop Track includes two 12km routes, the Catlins River Walk and Wisp Loop Walk. The routes can be walked in either direction and can be done as a 24km two day tramp or one long day tramp. Sections of the track can be walked independently of the others, as there are many entry/exit points along the way.

The first part of the track, along the Catlins River Walk, is through exotic forest and silver beech. Over the length of the track, four wire-rope suspension bridges cross the Catlins River with it many waterfalls and rapids. These, as well as rare native birds, provide plenty of beautiful photo opportunities. The Wisp Loop part of the track offers easy walking along forestry roads, where you will see plantation radiata pine, douglas fir, and eucalyptus forest. This area could be also be mountain biked. The Rocky Knoll extension track is a side route that runs off the Wisp Loop Walk on the Rata Range. It is well worth the short climb to gain the extensive views to the coast and further inland, and glimpse the sub-alpine vegetation not often accessible to to visitors in the Catlins.

At the Wisp end of the tracks, there is a picnic area with a toilet.

Department of Conservation
Last modified
Thu 13 Jan 2022
  • Activities
  • Natural Attraction
  • Free Things to Do
  • Outdoor Activities
  • Sightseeing
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  • Scenic Photo Point
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  • Walking & Tramping