About the Bay of Islands

Visit the Bay of Islands easily with helpful guides and useful information at your fingertips. The Bay of Islands is one of the most prominent tourist destinations in New Zealand, conveniently located just over three hours from Auckland by road. The weather is usually warm all year round, which makes it popular for big-game fishing, snorkeling, diving, and sailing as well as other water based activities. The Bay of Islands is also home to several historical attractions such as the Mission House and the Stone Store, not to mention the historic Waitangi Treaty Grounds, Birthplace of the Nation. No matter your age or interests, you are sure to discover activities of your liking here. Will you be relaxing on the golden sandy beaches or exploring the hidden caves of the islands?

Why you should visit the Bay of Islands?

The Bay of Islands has 144 islands and includes the tourist towns of Russell, Opua, Waitangi and Paihia. There are an abundance of picturesque views that will take your breath away, as well as a host of exciting activities to keep you entertained. Great options include going kayaking, chartering a yacht, or walking along the seaside with your family and friends. You can also go on the famous ferry ride to the town of Russell, visit the Hundertwasser attractions in Kawakawa, view the scenic sunset on the 90 Mile Beach, hang out at one of the famous cafes or collect souvenirs from flourishing art shops in Kerikeri.

Things to do

A great place to start is sampling the wide range of water-based activities in these towns, and exploring the safe anchorages and hidden bays in each of the islands. You can create memorable experiences by swimming with dolphins and encountering a plethora of aquatic and sub-tropical wildlife such as whales, penguins, birds, and more. The most popular tourist activities in these islands are fishing expeditions and camping in the conservation camp sites and holiday parks. Other options when visiting the Bay of Islands include experiencing scenic riverside adventures on the Waipapa River Track or going for guided walks in the Waipoua Kauri Forest.

Culture and history

Visiting museums and historical areas, or taking a heritage tour are among the best ways of learning about the rich history of the Bay of Islands. You have the unique opportunity to experience the lifestyle of the Ngāpuhi tribe, the largest tribe in the Bay of Islands in New Zealand, who have lived in villages along the coast for centuries.

Whether you want to relax with your family or have an adventure filled holiday with your friends, the Bay of Islands is a place you must visit! When seeking accommodation in the area, there are plenty of options to choose from, ranging from luxurious seaside villas to motels, to meet every need and budget. The nature and wildlife will help you rediscover yourself, while the warmth of the local people will make you feel at home. You will certainly leave the island with treasured memories and the desire to return for more adventures as well as fun!


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