Explore wineries, sample locally-produced fare and marvel at the Art Deco architecture. Check out these top experiences in Hawke's Bay.
Often likened to Bordeaux in France, Hawke's Bay is famed for its full-bodied red wines. Hire a bike and taste your way around some of the region's 72 vineyards, including the award-winning Te Mata Estate Winery(opens in new window) and Craggy Range(opens in new window). Stop for lunch at Church Road Winery(opens in new window) or Mission Estate(opens in new window), New Zealand's oldest winery.
Stretching 3km of Napier coastline, Marine Parade is the best place to take in the sea views with a walk or bike ride along the promenade. Stop for a bite to eat in one of many cafes and bars that line the walkway, or call into MTG Hawke’s Bay(opens in new window), a museum, theatre and gallery in one.
Visit a local farmers' market(opens in new window) and stroll among the stalls of fresh fruit, vegetables, artisan bread, cheese and meats, before finding a shady spot to picnic. You'll also find seasonal produce for sale by the roadside, often just with an honesty box for payment.
When a devastating earthquake destroyed Napier in 1931, the city was rebuilt in the style of the times - Art Deco. Relieve the opulent era of jazz, boaters and beads at the annual Art Deco Festival(opens in new window) or take a guided tour of the spectacular architecture in a vintage car(opens in new window).
Sweeping views, dramatic cliffs, and Australasia's largest mainland gannet colony - a visit to the impressive sandstone headland and home to over 20,000 gannets with Gannet Safaris Overland tours(opens in new window) is not to be missed. The tour takes you along the cliff tops on Cape Kidnappers Station land, enjoy views of the Cape Kidnappers walking track below as you head out to the gannets. The walking track is accessible along the beach and only during low tide. It's also important to note that this area is prone to unpredictable landslides, so be sure to proceed with caution if you are planning on attempting this walk.
At nearly 400 metres above sea level, you are guaranteed panaromic views from the summit of Te Mata Peak. Hike, bike or drive to the top and marvel at the hang gliders soaring high above the majestic Heretaunga Plains.
Hawke's Bay Trails combine more than 200km of tracks that are helpfully split into themes (water, landscapes and wineries). You can visit all of Hawke's Bay's attractions by bike - cycle by the seaside, venture to the vineyards or explore the countryside. With flat, easy trails for all levels, it's the best way to experience the stunning region.