The Best of the Bay of Islands

The Bay of Islands is one of New Zealand’s most stunning destinations. It is laden with beautiful scenery, historical significance and fun things to do.

The Bay of Islands is one of New Zealand’s most stunning destinations. It is laden with beautiful scenery and historically significant landmarks and with such an extensive range of activities to do, your itinerary can be as adventuresome or laid back as you like.


Visit the Waitangi Treaty GroundsThe Waitangi Treaty Grounds where the Treaty of Waitangi was signed between Maori Chiefs and the British Crown. Many describe this area as the ‘birthplace’ of New Zealand and there is so much to learn and discover here. Enjoy strolling the beautiful grounds and soaking in the history for yourselves or take a guided tour to enhance your experience.

See the Hole in the Rock – The Hole in the Rock is an iconic activity to do while you are visiting the Bay of Islands. You can take a fun and exhilarating ride on the fast paced Mack Attack out to Cape Brett, or a more leisurely cruise while on the search for dolphins on board the Fullers Great Sights catamaran. However you choose to make this trip you will enjoy stunning scenery and experience nature in a memorable way.

Explore Russell – This delightful little township is just a short ferry ride across the bay from Paihia, where you can discover historical treasures such as Pompallier Mission and Printery, or the Russell Museum on your own or you can join a Mini Tour of the area for more interesting insights. When you have discovered all that you want to for one day, take a stroll along the waterfront and relax at one of the many cafes with picture perfect outlooks.

Journey to Cape Reinga –Travel north to the tip of ‘the long white cloud’, along the way admire the assortment of landscapes from rolling countryside to rugged coastlines.  Drive along the sands of Ninety Mile Beach and have a go at sand boarding down the impressive sand dunes! At Cape Reinga, the breathtaking views and the tranquility of the area are one of a kind. See where the Tasman Sea and Pacific Ocean meet together, visit the lighthouse and enjoy being ‘on top of the world’ – well at the top of New Zealand at least!

Swim with Dolphins – Enjoy an experience of a lifetime you will never forget! Search the Bay of Islands for dolphins and then get up close and personal with these beautiful and curious creatures of the sea when you go swimming with them in the glistening waters and share in their magical playground.

Take a Hike – or a leisurely walk along one of the many scenic and picturesque walking trails there are available in the area. Whether it is a coastal stroll or a hike up the hills or taking in the spectacular Haruru Falls, there is something for all ages and abilities to enjoy.

Go Fishing – The Bay of Islands is known as a world class fishing destination and anglers come from near and far to catch the’ big one’.  There are a number of Fishing Charters available to book a spot on or bring your own rod and find your own perfect spot to enjoy some Northland fishing. Families also enjoy fishing from the wharf in Russell, and rods are available for hire from the local convenience store if you don’t have one. Some local fish shops will even prepare and cook your catch for you for a small fee.

Paddle the Bay of Islands – If seeing the sights and exploring nooks and crannies in a kayak or canoe is more your thing then you will not be disappointed. The Bay of Islands is the perfect place to discover hidden beaches, get amongst dolphins and to enjoy the inspiring scenery in a unique and relaxed way. A perfect activity for friends, families, individuals or couples to go at your own pace or be a part of a guided group.

Talk with the Birds – Take the kids to visit The Parrot Place, a bird zoo with over 300 birds from all over the world to see. You can wander through subtropical gardens and get up close and personal with these stunning feathered friends. The kids will love going on a parrot safari!

The Bay of Islands truly offers an adventure for everyone or the perfect location to sit back and relax and just enjoy the laid back atmosphere and soak in the idyllic surroundings of this postcard perfect holiday destination!

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