Hawke's Bay


  • Beautiful beaches
  • Surfing, diving and swimming spots
  • Mahia Peninsula Scenic Reserve


  • by car:

    1 h 45 min from Gisborne

  • 2 h 50 min from Napier

You'll find every kind of beach around the edges of Mahia Peninsula - sandy coves, rocky bays and long expanses of surf coast.

The Mahia Peninsula is a hilly promontory projecting south into the sea, between Poverty Bay and Hawke’s Bay. According to Māori legend, Mahia Peninsula is Te matau a Maui - the fish-hook of Maui.

The peninsula has a number of beautiful beaches and peaceful holiday villages and is a natural playground for people who like to surf, fish, dive, kayak and swim. It has an interesting mix of sandy and rocky beaches – some exposed to the ocean swells, others beautifully sheltered.

Discover the black sand of Black’s Beach and the tranquillity of Poutama and Mahia Beaches. If you want to catch some waves, Mahanga Beach and The Reefs are great destinations.

Make time for a walk in the Mahia Peninsula Scenic Reserve, one of the largest areas of lowland coastal forest in Tairawhiti. This 374 hectare (935 acre) reserve is one of the last large tracts of lowland coastal forest remaining on the North Island’s east coast. A 3.5 kilometre track takes walkers through a range of different types of native vegetation – tawa, kohekohe, rewarewa, karaka, rimu, matai and kahikatea. You need to allow about two hours to complete the loop. The track is steep in places, but you can enjoy a rest in the picnic area which is nestled amongst stands of nikau, rimu and rewarewa - a lovely way to escape the sun for a couple of hours.

A special place of interest on the eastern side of the peninsula is Piko O Te Rangi, or Coronation Reserve. Within the reserve is a rock with a naturally formed basin. In early settlement times, it was used as a font when Māori were baptised into the Christian faith by Bishop William Williams. A hole in the wall of rocks nearby is believed to have been used to store bibles.

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