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It’s quite fun to imagine a Dunedin so small that the town belt ringed the outer urban edge. Nowadays, the town belt’s almost "outer inner city", writes Clare Fraser.
The town belt seems like the bushy part above the university and town but in reality it extends from the Northern Cemetery through the city to the Southern Cemetery. In these times of keeping things local, it makes a neat short walk.
Woodhaugh Gardens is a good warm up, then the bullock track off Malvern St takes you up to Prospect Park. From there, you can look over North Rd going up Northeast Valley and see it’s not as flat as it feels on foot.
After Moana Pool and Littlebourne Park, there are side tracks into the bush, some official, others more informal.
A sealed path just before Preston Cres takes you down to Maori Rd and Jubilee Park, an autumn stunner. Otherwise, to keep going you might want to avoid an awful corner by nipping down the path that leads to Parkhill Ave and Mornington.
Excuse my ignorance, but at this point I had fun discovering the top of Stafford St. You have to cross over it to the massive sloped grassy park on the other side.
Take the steps down to a series of tracks through bush that, believe it or not, includes a few tree ferns. Follow your nose downhill and suddenly you’ll pop out in the Southern Cemetery which, at this time of year, is sombre and sobering with the gravestones’ silent stories of past lives.
Here’s another fun bit: every few minutes buses go past, taking you back to your starting point.