Regions-North Is

For faster loading I have split this region section into 2 pages - North and South and will give a short description with some pics on each of the regions and hopefully at least, partially satisfy your curiosity about the landscape, coastline and beaches etc in New Zealand.

North Island
Northland, Auckland, Coromandel, Waikato, Bay of Plenty, Taupo, East Cape/Hawkes Bay, Taranaki, Manawatu, Wairarapa and Wellington

Northland is regarded as "the winterless north" with the climate being sub-tropical. It has some of the most beautiful scenery and is the location for New Zealand's remaining Kauri forests. Included in the region is Cape Reinga at the top of the North Island, 90 Mile Beach. The Bay of Islands is also in this region which is where Russell, the country's first settlement, is situated. The Bay of Islands is a fisherman's paradise.

Bay of Islands


Spirits Bay
The Auckland region is known for its diversity, mainly because the city of Auckland (City of Sails) is the largest city in New Zealand with a population of approximately 1 million. Auckland is the host for the America's Cup in the year 2000. The latest and most notable feature added to the Auckland skyline is the Sky Tower hosting one of the country's 2 casinos. It has many wonderful beaches and plenty of bush walks for the nature lover.

Auckland Harbour

Why Auckland is called
the City of Sails

Auckland skyline at dusk
The Coromandel Peninsula is a very popular holiday spot for most New Zealanders. It is steeped in gold mining history and is mainly extinct volcanoes and is covered by temperate rainforest. Both the east and west coasts of the peninsula has wonderful beaches, one that that is notable is Hot Water Beach on the west coast. When the tide is out you are able to dig a trough in the sand and lie in warm water. The town of Coromandel is the home of many crafts people. At the base of the peninsula is the town of Thames. A town of history and called the Gateway to the Coromandel. As you travel up the peninsula, the most glorious views of the Hauraki Gulf is seen. I can in no way justify the glory of the peninsula with only 3 pics, you will be able to find more information and pics through the links page.

One of the numerous bays

A pohutukawa on a beach

One of the numerous beaches
The Waikato is known to be one of the richest dairy farming areas in the world. It has a temperate climate which bodes well for farming, vineyards, orchards etc. The main city in the Waikato is Hamilton which is split by the Waikato River, the longest river in New Zealand. This region is also so known worldwide for the breeding of racehorses. The Waitomo Caves are also located in the Waikato. The world renowned International Field Days for the farming and timber industries is held at Mystery Creek which is approximately a 15 minute drive from Hamilton.

Waikato River running through

Waitomo cave with staligmites

Dairy farm
Bay of Plenty
The Bay of Plenty has some of the most beautiful beaches on the East Coast of New Zealand. Because of its temperate climate, it offers good conditions for farming and orcharding, particularly citris and kiwifruit (kiwi). The cities to note in the Bay of Plenty are Tauranga - the largest export port in New Zealand, Rotorua - the most well known thermal area and centre for Maori culture in New Zealand and Whakatane - mostly known for deep sea fishing and the active volcano off the shore of Whakatane, White Island.

Mount Maunganui

Lake Rotorua

White Island
The Taupo region includes the volcanic plateau in the central area of the North Island. Lake Taupo is New Zealand's largest lake and is very popular for trout fisherman from all around the world. The best skiing in New Zealand is to be had on the slopes of Mt Ruapehu. It is a region that offers a relaxing or an action packed holiday.

Lake Taupo with Ngaruahoe
and Ruapehu in the background

Mt Ngaruahoe - another live
volcano in the Central Plateau

Mt Ruapehu erupting in 1997
East Cape/Hawkes Bay
The East Cape is a scenic and rugged area and is sparsely populated. The city of Gisborne is in the East Cape area and is the first city in the world to see the sun each day. The Cape usually experiences the hottest weather in New Zealand. Further on from the Cape is Hawkes Bay. Beautiful beaches, lovely weather, wonderful scenery - a made for holiday. The city of Napier is located in Hawkes Bay and offers the largest concentration of art deco buildings in the world. The Hawkes Bay area is a horticulturists dream.

A beautiful beach on the
East Cape

Another East Coast beach

The Taranki region is on the West Coast of New Zealand. It is well known for its surf and beaches of black sand. It is dominated by the city of New Plymouth and the cone shaped volcano, Mt Taranaki.

A beach showing
the black sand

Mt Taranki

Another view of
Mt Taranaki
Manawatu and Wairarapa
The Manawatu region is mainly rural, but also has the city of Palmerston North. It enjoys a warm climate and offers many opportunities for the hiker/tramper.
The Wairarapa region is south of the Manawatu region, still on the East Coast and is also mainly rural. The towns of Masterton and Featherston are a couple of the towns found in this region. The Rimutaka mountains are the division between the Wellington and the Wairarapa regions and consequently because of these ranges affecting the winds, makes for it being a dry region.

A rocky beach in the Wairarapa

A scene of the Manawatu landscape

A scene depicting the affect
of the Rimutakas
The capital city, Wellington, is at the bottom of the North Island and for those travellers not flying, is the departure port to cross the Cook Strait by ferry to get to the South Island. The region is comparatively small compared to the other regions in the country. But, when travelling from the city up the coastline, the traveller is offered beautiful scenery and beaches. The region is rather hilly in its south and residential areas can be seen built into the hillsides. The city of Wellington itself is known by New Zealanders as "Windy Wellington".

City of Wellington

Wellington from the other side

Paekakariki - a city and beach
north of Wellington



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