Walk and Playground Circuit: Polhill Reserve And George Denton Park Playground

Polhill Reserve, Aro Valley, Wellington

Need to know


This is a fantastic buggy-friendly walk for the family.  Keep an eye out for saddlebacks & kererū along the way and don’t forget to stop for a play in the George Denton Park playground!

This area contains a number of tracks for mountain bikes and walkers.

The Polhill Reserve Loop (built by volunteers) starts at the grassed area near the top of Aro Street and heads uphill on the Transient Track through regenerating native bush to Karepa Street. The Transient track leads to the start of the Highbury Fling track, which winds around the top of the valley to George Denton Park.

George Denton Park, at the end of Highbury Road, has a large grassed area and a playground. Squatters Track leads from the park down to Holloway Road.

At the end of Holloway Road, a stream flows through a pleasant picnic area before entering a culvert. The loop track beside the stream takes you a short way up the valley. Across a footbridge and behind the rustic gardeners’ work shed are two tracks: one leads steeply uphill to the Transient track and Ashton Fitchett Drive; the other follows the side of the ridge to the Aro Street entrance, crossing some private land.

The wind turbine and Te Kopahou Reserve can be reached from Ashton Fitchett Drive, and the Zealandia/Karori Sanctuary fenceline track can be followed all the way to Wrights Hill.

Read more about the Polhill Reserve History.

Entrance and exit points: Numerous, including Highbury Road, Holloway Road, Aro Street, Karepa Street, Ashton Fitchett Drive.

Features: Visit a ring of four anti-aircraft gun emplacements which were installed during WWII. The surviving octagonal buildings are over 12.5m wide and set on 1.5m deep foundations that contain wings which provided shelter and ammunition niches for the military personnel working with the guns. It’s a 10-minute walk to the gun emplacements if you take the track from Ashton Fitchett Drive towards Zealandia’s fence, and then double back along the ridge to the site.

Location: George Denton Park and Polhill Reserve are located in the hills in north-west Brooklyn, and are both part of the Wellington Town Belt.

Parking:  Parking is limited at all entrances.

 Accessibility:  Steep in parts.

 Dogs:  Dogs must be kept on a leash.

 Mountain biking: Polhill Reserve is one of the best places in Wellington for mountain biking. With the most used trail in the city – ‘Transient’ climbing from Aro valley up to the Zealandia fenceline. Then you can carry on up to the Wind Turbine on ‘Car Parts’ or drop back down on ‘Rollercoaster’‘Highbury Fling’ or the exhilarating ‘Serendipi

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