New Zealand in Focus
Northland – the “Winterless North” is an amazing destination all year round, with something for everyone. Whether you are adventurous or just want to relax by the beach, there are so many beautiful places to see and amazing adventures to be had in Northland, here are just a few to wet your appetite.
Just a two hour drive north of Auckland is the main city in Northland, Whangarei. Whangarei has a reputation as the city with 100 beaches, and offers a range of picturesque and safe places to swim, from the grand scale ocean beaches to small sandy bays along both edges of the harbour. With award winning bridges and scenic walks, you will be sure to “love it here” – Whangarei’s slogan!
Travel 20 minutes east of Whangarei and discover the Tutukaka Coast, rated one of the best diving spots in the world. This sheltered harbour is the gateway to the Poor Knights Marine Reserve, a renowned divers’ paradise, but equally as appealing to snorkelers and kayakers. Join the Perfect Day or Dive! Tutukaka cruise and dive boats for a day trip not to be missed! There are more than 50 dive spots around the islands – underwater arches and tunnels and the largest sea cave in the world. The scenery above and below the water is breathtaking.
Heading further North, via the West Coast, you can stop at the pristine fresh water Kai iwi lakes, then up through Waipoua Forest, a beautiful rainforest and home to some of the largest Kauri trees in the world. Another short drive north reveals a gorgeous view, with large sand dunes and the ocean, as you enter the Hokianga Harbour.
If you head up the East Coast an hour from Whangarei you will come across Paihia, in the Bay Of Islands, with golden beaches and the perfect starting point for boating, sailing, surfing and deep sea fishing. While in Paihia, visit the Waitangi Treaty Grounds, a historical site where New Zealand’s founding documents were signed. The museum displays a unique selection of artefacts and tells a story that is rich in history and ties both Maori and non Maori people together.
Paihia is a short 10 minute ferry ride across the harbour to New Zealand’s First Capital, Russell. A few minutes from the township is Russell Orongo Bay Holiday Park. As a member of the Family Parks group this holiday Park offers central base to discover the Bay of Islands and the Northland region. Set on 14 picturesque acres you will find the perfect camping site to pitch your tent or park your campervan or you can enjoy a relaxing stay in one of their cabins, cottages or bungalows. For something a little bit different, why not try one of the glamping options of offer.
While staying at Russell Orongo Bay Holiday Park, don’t forget to join the Family Parks Travel Rewards programme and receive discounts at local attractions, restaurants and retailers such as 10% off dining at the Duke of Marlborough and Scales restaurant or any trip with Explore NZ who offer cruises around the beautiful islands where you can take the opportunity to swim with bottlenose dolphins. To book a stay at Russell Orongo Bay Holiday Park click here.
Finally, you can’t leave Northland without a toboggan ride down a giant sand dunes on 90 mile beach on the way to the top of New Zealand. Cape Reinga is where the Tasman Sea meets the Pacific Ocean in a spectacular swirl of currents – a truly memorable scene on a hot Northland day!
For more information on Northland visit NorthlandNZ
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