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Big-game fishing at the Bay of Islands, catching surf at Cape Reinga and hiking to the cascading waters of Whangarei Falls, the Northland of New Zealand is postcard-perfect nature and adventure.
The northernmost of the country’s 16 regions, the Northland often goes by the nicknames of the Far North, or the Winterless North, due to its subtropical climate of warm humid summers and mild wet winters.
“Up north” is where you’ll find the most pristine and plentiful of the country’s beaches, with so many to choose from that you might have a stretch of sand all to yourself. Offshore, you can see the dorsal fins of dolphin pods undulating through the waves, while inland the giant trees of the ancient kauri forests will make you feel wonderfully small.
Located at the tip of North Island, Northland is where the earliest Maori and Europeans settled, and is also the historic site of the Waitangi Treaty Grounds. The 1840 treaty was signed by Britain and more than 500 Maori chiefs, making this region an important piece of the country’s heritage and giving it the title of the birthplace of the nation.
The glittering jewels in the Northland’s crown are the emerald islets set in sapphire ocean - the Bay of Islands. The 144 islands are dotted between Cape Brett and the Purerua Peninsula, home to charming towns, such as Paihia, Russell and Kerikeri. Explore the archipelago by sea or air for a chance to encounter penguins, dolphins and whales, and to take in views filled with beautiful enclaves and oases.
With the Pacific Ocean to the east and the Tasman Sea to the west, the subtropical forests and gorgeous coastline of New Zealand’s Northland offer rich history, stunning beaches, watersports, wineries, colonial towns, hiking trails and much more, ready for you to discover.
The Northland has earnt its name as the Winterless North, as summer here is warm and humid, while winter is mild and wet. Peak season is New Zealand’s summer (December, January and February), when there are both school holidays and festive holidays going on, and Kiwis take time off to journey up north for a vacation.
Each region in New Zealand has its own Anniversary Day, which celebrates the founding of the original provinces with agricultural shows, local fayres and novelty events. Northland’s official Anniversary Day is 29th January, though it is often observed on the nearest Monday or Friday to create a long weekend. Other events to look out for include the Scottish-influenced Waipu Highland Games on 1st January and the wacky-but-wonderful Russell Birdman Festival in July, which celebrates the nation’s favourite flightless bird with a “birdman jump” event among many other fun oddities.
A trip to Northland features in our New Zealand Honeymoon itinerary, with a glamping experience by the Takou River and the opportunity to explore the Bay of Islands via a chartered boat excursion. If you’d like to add time in Northland to your New Zealand itinerary, let us know and we can arrange this for you as part of your tailor made luxury tour.
Our stays in Northland include a romantic glamping getaway to the Magic Cottages at Takou River; an eco-friendly lodge featuring four private and exclusive individual properties, with one being a safari-style canopy tent equipped with luxuries amenities, ideal for honeymooners looking for an intimate escape.