Grab the free Heritage Trail brochure from the visitor information centre for a 3km self-guided walk that takes in 22 historic sites. Other walks lead to attractive Mill Bay, west of Mangonui, and Rangikapiti Pā Historic Reserve, which has ancient Māori terracing and a spectacular view of Doubtless Bay – particularly at sunrise and sunset. A walkway runs from Mill Bay to the pā (fortified village site), but you can also drive nearly to the top.
There’s plenty of accommodation, but most is pricy in summer. Outside the peak months things settle down considerably.
Mangonui has the best selection of places to eat, and there are also cafes, takeaways and stores around the other beaches.