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Ōtuataua Stonefields walk – Mangere
Tom from Auckland sent us this entry, below, for our favourite track or trail competition. If you also want to share your favourite track or trail and have a chance to win one of two prize daypacks, then email us at firstname.lastname@example.org by 28 February 2019:
"Everyone owes it to themselves to guide a visitor through their city at least once. There’s something amazing about seeing your home through the eyes of newcomers, in experiencing the normal as novel and the familiar as fantastical. It’s so easy to form a love-hate, and usually more of the latter and less of the latter, relationship with a place where traffic and rates and rushing about are the mediums through which you engage with the world around you.
"Strangers see none of that. They marvel at the city; how green it is, how pedestrian friendly, the surplus of kooky little corners, the personality.
"But more than any of that, visitors marvel at the way nature is so integrated into the city. So accessible. I had the pleasure of taking a bunch of visiting Brits through a leisurely walk through the Ōtuataua Stonefields on a lazy Sunday afternoon. An easy meander, there is a gradient that might challenge the slightly less fit although a slower pace would likely balance that out easily enough.
"Hats are highly recommended as the paths are sun-soaked making for a wonderfully warm wonder that inevitably leads to a very good nap after the excitement ends.
"The views are spectacular, so just be sure to balance the time spent snapping shots with actually enjoying the experience of being there. A picnic on the hill, a lot of laughter out and surrounded by nature, and the avocado farm as a delightful surprise, made for a memorable experience that they’ll talk about for a long time to come.
"And we’ll be back again next weekend, it’s a great walk and wonderful get-away so close to the city that feels so very remote."