We went exploring at Hobsonville Point and found some gems. There are LOTS of places to go biking with kids at Hobsonville, and this is just one option. Here’s a handy map of the area that shows how Bomb Point fits in. We’ll be back to explore some more and see what else we can find.
For this ride, we explored part of the Te Onekiritea / Bomb Point track.
I recommend parking at the Rifle Range, at the southern end of Catalina Bay Drive. The Rifle Range is a super cute little park that used to be a military rifle range.
There’s a sound stage to play on, as well as grassed areas, seating, and a concrete table tennis table (BYO paddles and ping pong balls). You’ll also find a number of signs explaining the history of the range as well. Fascinating stuff for kids and adults alike!
Importantly, this is the only place along our ride that I found public toilets – they’re good ones, clean and a decent size. There’s also a tap and a drinking fountain.
So, once you’re parked and ready to ride, cross the Rifle Range to where the drinking fountain is (you can’t miss it) and you’ll find the path.
Head left and you’ll find yourself in Onekiritea Park. Down the path you get to a T-junction, and right ahead of you you’ll see one of the 12 old store buildings around Onekiritea Park. They’re empty now, but they used to store munitions in case of hostilities! A nice added extra with your ride.
If you turn right, you can do a big loop of the park, seeing lots of the old buildings along the way. The path / road is asphalt, so it’s easy riding for all – although not in perfect condition, so keep an eye out for occasional holes and gravel patches.
We turned left and then left again, down the gravel path to what is technically Boundary Road. One thing to note – the path is technically a shared space with vehicles (20kph speed limit). We were there on a Sunday, and the gate from the road at the wharf was closed to vehicles.
Also, there are lots of planters and other features jutting out into the road to ensure if any vehicle did come through, it would have to be going very slow. I felt completely relaxed having my littlies blast around and get ahead of me, as it was obvious that on the day we were there, we weren’t going to meet any motorised vehicles.
It’s a nice ride down to the wharf end, where you’ll see the gate across the road. As you get close to the end of the path, keep an eye out for steps heading up the slope on the left-hand side.
Leave your bikes at the bottom (or you could ride around the long way going past the gate and then to the left up Launch Road, then left up Bomb Point Road), and head up towards Harrier Point Park. This is a cute little park with some cool playground equipment for young and old (flying fox, big circle swing and climbing frames). It also has barbecues for public use. No toilet here though.
Then it’s time to head back to Rifle Range where you parked.
What I particularly liked about this ride is that there is lots of track you can explore, but you can also just do a short ride as well. The history of the area adds an exciting element to the ride for young and old, and provides lots of spots to stop and explore.
There are many options for food and drink:
- BYO picnic or refreshments
- Fabric Cafe Bistro – if you’re lucky you might snag an outdoor table, right on the waterfront (7.30am – late, everyday – except public holidays when they close at 4pm)
- Little Creatures – they even have an indoor playground for the littlies! (open for takeaways 12-9pm, 7 days & dine in from 12pm weekdays, 11am weekends)
- Catalina Cafe (7am – 4pm, 7 days)
- The famous Catalina Bay Farmers Market (8.30am – 2.00pm, Fridays, Saturdays & Sundays)
- and many more coffee spots, restaurants and cafes
If you’re there with kids’ bikes only but suddenly fancy having a pedal yourself, good news: there are NextBike share bikes at the Hobsonville Landing and outside Catalina Cafe, which you can use after signing up for the NextBike app. (For future reference, you’ll also find NextBike stations downtown along the Auckland waterfront – and dotted around Christchurch!)
— Tracey-Lee Pettifer