Northland’s provincial capital and its only city was known as ‘Cherished Harbour’ to the Maori. Today it is a commercial hub on the popular Northland circle touring route – the Twin Coast Discovery Highway.
This city has fine parks and gardens, a mild equable climate, a busy seaport and a colourful boat marina, which is a haven for international yachties.
The excellent Visitor Information Centre is located at Tarewa Park in Otaika on the southern approach to the city. A broad range of activities is on offer as follows:-
Visit the Whangarei Heritage Park just 7 minutes from the Visitor Centre
This features a kauri homestead, miniature railway, bush walks, museum and kiwi house.
Browse through the vibrant Quayside shopping mall at the Town Basin
This waterfront precinct is alive with the yachting fraternity, museums, art and craft galleries and specialty stores.
Climb up historic Mt Parahaki above the town
Enjoy panoramic views of the city and see the site of New Zealand’s largest Maori pa (fortress)
Immerse yourself in the wonderful bush reserves around Cafler Park
Visit the Fernery, Conservatory and Cactus House and discover New Zealand’s largest public collection of native ferns.
Visit the Whangarei Cultural Centre and view the excellent Northland Museum
Don’t miss Clapham’s Clock Collection in Water Street.
Stroll through A.H. Reed Kauri Park on Whareora Road (15 minutes from the city)
Follow the canopy walkway for a bird’s eye view of the forest.
Take an easy 30 minute walk along the Hatea River to the Whangarei Falls
The 25 metre falls are spectacular and can be photographed from many angles.
Drive out to Marsden Point Oil Refinery near the harbour entrance
View the excellent visitor centre and enjoy the popular swimming beach nearby.
Take a day trip around the magic Tutukaka Coast, taking in Matapouri, Whale Bay and Sandy Bay
Golden bays, sparkling waters and lush bush make this touring circuit a scenic gem.
Stay awhile at Tutukaka if you love maritime sports
This is the base for deep sea fishing charters and diving trips to the Poor Knight’s Marine Reserve and to significant shipwrecks.
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