The Bay of Islands is one of New Zealand’s best beach destinations. Life here is all about unwinding on pristine sands and swimming in hidden coves. On the Coromandel Peninsula, you can trek isolated mountains and uncover remote villages. Escape to your own corner of paradise with a luxury Bay of Islands and Coromandel holiday.
On New Zealand’s North Island, you’ll find two special destinations, the Bay of Islands and Coromandel Peninsula. The Bay of Islands is located just off the nation's eastern coast and encompasses 150 subtropical, unspoilt islands. Here, you can laze on white-sand beaches lapped by turquoise waters or get physical with the island’s water-based activities like big game fishing, kayaking, diving nearby coral reefs, or spotting dolphins and whales. The Bay of Islands has played an important role in New Zealand’s history. It was one of the earliest Maori settlements and later, home to the first European colony, established at Russell. The Waitangi Treaty, a crucial document governing the relations between the indigenous people and the colonists was signed here. Today, you can visit historical sites like the 19th-century Pompallier Mission, the historic town of Russell, or the Waitangi Treaty grounds.
Travel south to Coromandel Peninsula, a thin strip of land that juts out into the Pacific. Its widest point is only 40 km, meaning that you can easily access everything the area has to offer. Sunbathe on the stunning beaches at Mercury Bay, explore the picturesque Cathedral Cove, climb volcanic peaks at Tairua, or dig your own hot pool at Hot Water Beach. Afterwards, relax in charming villages as you watch the sunset over the Pacific Ocean.
The Bay of Islands and Coromandel Peninsula are perfect luxury holiday destinations at any time of year. Summer months, from December to March, bring plenty of sunshine and warm temperatures. In December, you can expect highs of 22°C, perfect for sunbathing or taking advantage of the great outdoors.
Winter, from June to September, brings snow to the mountains and low temperatures of 10°C in the Bay of Islands. While it may be too chilly for swimming in the Pacific, this is a great time of year for hiking or cycling.
At your luxury hotel, you can sample modern Kiwi and traditional Maori dishes. Mains are made using the freshest seasonal produce, most of which is grown locally. As the ocean plays a large part in local culture, menus typically feature plenty of seafood including crayfish, scallops, and snapper.
The Bay of Islands is the oldest wine producing region in New Zealand. Sample Northland white wine like Chardonnay, Pinot Gris, and Viogniers or red wine like Syrah, Cabernet, and Merlot - try them on a tour of the local vineyards.
British citizens do not need a visa to travel in New Zealand for stays of up to six months. For more information about visas and general travel advice go to GOV.UK.