Northland

Wairere Boulders, a world unique natural phenomenon

Northland is the northernmost region in New Zealand. Whangarei is the only city in the area; the next biggest towns have a few thousand people. The Northland Region (governed by the Northland Regional Council) covers the area from Te Hana in the south to Cape Reinga at the northern tip of the North Island. Further south, towns such as Wellsford and Warkworth are now part of the Auckland Region in local government terms, but were historically part of Northland.

If you're looking for wonderful empty beaches in a subtropical-like setting, this is the best area in New Zealand. The east coast of Northland has long been a well-known holiday place, but recently the west coast has also become known due to its spectacular natural phenomena: Tane Mahuta (huge, ancient kauri tree), untouched forests in Waipoua, Warawara, Omahuta Kauri Sanctuary and Puketi, biggest concretions in the world (the Koutu Boulders and the world unique Wairere Boulders), the sand dunes of the North Hokianga and Ninety Mile Beach.

Regions

Cities

Other destinations

Poor Knights Island
See also the dedicated article for Diving the Poor Knights Islands.

The Poor Knights Islands are half way between Whangarei and the Bay of Islands. They are a nature reserve and the surrounding waters are a marine reserve. You are not allowed to land on the islands, but the waters are a popular underwater diving location. The Poor Knights Islands can be reached from Tutukaka Harbour, 30 kilometres north of Whangarei where a number of charter boats operate from Tutukaka. Of note is Rikoriko Cave has been measured and is the world's largest sea cave. Several boats can enter the cave, and the acoustics are extraordinarily good. Rikoriko means dancing light in Maori and the light reflected from the water seems to dance on the roof of this cavernous natural wonder.

Get in

By air

Auckland is the main international gateway for travel to Northland. Air New Zealand operates domestic flights to Whangarei and Kerikeri (Bay of Islands). Great Barrier Airlines flies from Auckland to Kaitaia. Charter operators offer transport into the region tailored to your requirements.

By car

The Twin Coast Discovery Highway is Northland's scenic touring route starting and finishing in Auckland. Taking you to both coasts, this route showcases the diversity of the region.

By sea

Arrival to Northland by sea is spectacular - your coastal journey is bound to impress. Stunning headlands, bush covered hillsides, long stretches of beach greet as you head for terra firma. If you are arriving by boat from overseas there are two official Ports of Entry into Northland.

By bus

See

Have a play with big balls, the Koutu Boulders in Hokianga.

Do

Go next

This article is issued from Wikivoyage - version of the Tuesday, August 04, 2015. The text is available under the Creative Commons Attribution/Share Alike but additional terms may apply for the media files.