The Waro Limestone Scenic Reserve is a nature and conservation reserve located just North of Hikurangi in Northland and around twenty minutes from Whangarei City, the reserve covers around seven and a half hectares of spectacular Limestone formations and an old abandoned coal mine.
There are two short walks located within the reserve boundary the Yvonne Stewart Track which circles the lake that was the old coal mine which has now filled with water and the Waro Limstone Track that circles the stunning Limestone formations.
Coal was the main focus of Hikurangi back in the late 1800s and the town was built from the coal industry which lasted untill the 1950s, by 1925 Hikurangi was the major coal producing area in North Auckland and by the time it shut down had produced over 4.5 million tons of coal.
There are some special features to look out for on the Waro Limstone Track that circles the Limestone formations on the northern part of the track, there is a raised section built from Limestone blocks and this section was the horse tramline that connected the coal mine to the railway that was located on the other side of what is now known as Lake Waro.
The Limestone rock formations are natural caused by eroding water and form flutes on the rock surface in all sorts of patterns, the area is characterized by depressions and sink holes as water drains into the surrounding ground and forms caves and holes through out the area.
The Limestone rocks are very similair to the Abby Caves formations which are located not far from the Waro Limestone Scenic Reserve, the Abby Caves are on a much larger scale than Waro and as the name suggests form huge cave systems under the ground.
Waro Limstone Scenic Reserve