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Destination: Far North & Northland Region

Discover the far North, beyond Auckland. The winterless North is where the human story started approximately 900 years ago. From the stunning Manea Footprints of Kupe Cultural Heritage and Education Centre, in Opononi to Paihia’s boisterous past there is something for everyone to enjoy. Northland is the wild blue yonder where Tutukaka’s sub-tropical marine currents provide a rich resource for marine life around the Poor Knights Island. The twin coast discovery trail leads to the quiet districts, in the Hokianga where ancient kauri trees hint at former forest glory. Cycling, walking, savouring wine in single estate vineyards, marveling at the skill of artists in the far North is a year round pleasure. Visitors are guaranteed whatever the season there is sure to be a favourite place waiting for you to discover.

For an overview of Aotearoa New Zealand attractions, things to do and places to visit check out the definitive New Zealand travel guide.

TIP

Check out Amazing 12 New Zealand Attractions and pop them on your bucket list.

Travel guides

What to do
Where to stay
Kiwi Towns
11 Places to Camp in the Far North (Northland) in 2024

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8 Whangarei Heritage & Cultural Attractions Worth a Visit

Northland is a gateway for human occupation reaching back hundreds of years. Whangarei and its rivers was fertile ground supporting large fortified pa (village) sites and seasonal hunting ...

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Family-friendly – 6 Amazing Whangarei Walks You Shouldn’t Miss

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WHANGAREI – NORTHERN ENTRANCE

The northern entrance is vibrant Whangarei. A community celebrating modern art, its rich bicultural heritage and the lush subtropical climate creating magical garden spaces. There is plenty to see and do, for inspiration check 10 Whangarei places to go, trip guide, things to see & do. Consider Whangarei as a hub to explore Waipu and Bream Bay coastline with its interesting story about Scottish migration at the Waipu museum or a day trip finding the wild blue yonder and 10 reasons to linger in Tutukaka Coast.

The Hokianga is the north’s west coast and relatively unknown. Yet there are attractions such as  the recently opened Mana Kupa interactive centre in Opononi bringing visitors to the area. The TOP-10 things to do in Hokianga, activities — trip guides include majestic forest giants, the mighty kauri trees of the far North to sand boarding down towering gold tipped dunes or active adventures quad biking through prehistoric landscapes.

Concretions on Koutu Beach at Hokianga Harbour, Northland, in the North Island of New Zealand
Concretions on Koutu Beach at Hokianga Harbour

Hokianga’s hidden gems include:

  • Karst limestone landscapes where distorted rock formation challenge the imagination
  • Smooth rounded boulders looking like enormous giant balls
  • Beaches and dunes without the crowds
  • Heritage and art trails in quiet corners off the beaten path
  • A harbour that offers water sport enthusiasts the perfect spot to test a jet ski

NORTHLAND HIDDEN GEMS

Northland’s hidden gems are side road discoveries worth the detour. The ordinary will become extraordinary.

  • Ngawha Springs geothermal hot pools, only a few minutes from Te Waimate Mission New Zealand’s second oldest building. The journey is part of the Mission Station heritage trail following TOP-10 Northland Mission Stations, trip guide, what to see.
  • Kawakawa vintage train that transverses the main street competing with modern dairy tankers, pedestrians and the occasional tourist, Kawakawa trip guide, public toilets & other things to see. Follow the quirky sign for Kawakawa and prepare to be surprised at a small town with an international reputation of artistic excellence.
Ngawha Hot Springs, New Zealand
Ngawha Hot Springs
Poor Knights Islands, New Zealand
Poor Knights Islands

Best places to visit

Whangarei The Hub boardwalk sculpture installation, New Zealand Whangarei

8 Heritage Sites Worth a Detour

@Ngunguru Sandspit Protection Society Ngunguru

A quiet corner of the coast

Tutukaka is the base for boat tours for diving and snorkelling around the Poor Knights Islands, Tutukaka Marina, New Zealand Tutukaka

What to see and do

AH Reed canopy walk, Whangarei public reserves, Whangarei, New Zealand. Whangarei

Attractions, Activities, & Places to Visit

Poor Knights Islands, New Zealand Poor Knights Islands

Tutukaka, Northland what to see

Beautiful nature of Northland, Mangrove trees, Hokianga Harbour, Northland, New Zealand Hokianga Harbour

Kupe and the story of Aotearoa

Secluded Empty Beach at Waipu in Northland, New Zealand Bream Bay

and nearby beaches things to do

FAR NORTH & CAPE REINGA

Catch a 4WD tour and travel Ninety Mile Beach to Cape Reinga Lighthouse and hear the stories of how souls travel back to ancestral land from the tip of Aotearoa New Zealand. There is a gnarly pohutukawa tree and a lonely lighthouse marking the spot. Observe the headlands of Te Rerenga Wairua where oceans meet.

Cape Reinga Lighthouse 1 km path from car park, Northland, New Zealand
Cape Reinga Lighthouse
TIP

You need two days in your itinerary for this trip as it is remote and deserves the time spent actually getting there.

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