Castlepoint Scenic Reserve

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At Castlepont you can hunt for one of the world's rarest daisies, climb Castle Rock or watch the waves for dolphins and fur seals.

With its fossil-rich limestone reef, lighthouse and magnificent 162 metre high Castle Rock, Castlepoint is one of the most spectacular sites along the Wairarapa coastline. The area was named in 1770 by Captain Cook, who observed that Castle Rock resembled the battlements of a castle.

The reef, lagoon, sand dunes and Castle Rock are all part of Castlepoint Scenic Reserve. There are two short walks to explore Lighthouse Walk (30 minutes return) and Deliverance Cove Track (1.5 hours return).

Castlepoint's beach is often visited by dolphins and fur seals. Look also for sea birds - white-fronted terns, red-billed gulls and black shags inhabit the south end of the reef; reef herons and black-backed gulls nest on the sheer cliffs of Castle Rock.

If you're botanically inclined, hunt for the Castlepoint daisy, Brachyglottis compactus, which grows on the crumbled limestone of the reef and Castle Rock. Castlepoint is the only place in the world where you'll find this particular daisy.

If you decide to stay longer than a day, there is a camping ground and self contained accommodation available.

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