Welcome to Hokianga


Of all the remote parts of Northland, this is the pocket that feels the most removed from the mainstream. Pretension has no place here. Isolated, predominantly Māori communities nestle around the harbour’s many inlets, as they have done for centuries. Discovered by legendary explorer Kupe, it’s been settled by Ngāpuhi since the 14th century. Hippies arrived in the late 1960s and their legacy is a thriving little artistic scene.

Many of the roads remain unsealed, and, while tourism dollars are channelled eastward to the Bay of Islands, this truly fascinating corner of the country remains remarkably undeveloped, just as many of the locals like it.


Top experiences in Hokianga

Travel guides

Starting at $36.39

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Hokianga activities

$352.08 Multi-day & Extended Tours

3-Day Auckland to Bay of Islands Return Tour

Day 1: Auckland to PaihiaToday we head north to the seaside town of Paihia stopping en-route to hug some of the world’s mightiest trees, the native Kauri. We will also take a hike to visit a beautiful waterfall and stop for lunch and a swim at the scenic Waipu Cove. We'll visit the historic Waitangi Treaty Grounds (own expense), before settling into our accommodation where you are free to relax with one of the best views in town.Accommodation: Beachfront hostelActivities included: Visit to Parry Kauri Forest, Waipu Cove beach walk or swimOptional activities: Waitangi Treaty GroundsDay 2: Paihia to OpononiThis morning we board a wildlife cruise around the beautiful Bay of Islands, a collection of 144 islands bursting with marine life. In the afternoon it’s off to Opononi and Hokianga on the West Coast, where we will be greeted by a local Maori guide who will give a traditional welcome to the area. You have the option to take part in a Maori guided twilight encounter, where you’ll visit the Waipoua Forest, learn about Maori legends and the spiritual inhabitants of the forest.Accommodation: Comfortable quality lodgeActivities: Wild life boat trip, visit the sand dunes, traditional Maori welcomeMeals: Breakfast + DinnerDay 3: Opononi to AucklandThe day starts with a ferry ride across the Hokianga Harbour to go sand boarding down massive dunes (weather dependent); before a stop off to visit the mighty Waipoua Forest to admire NZ’s largest Kauri trees 'Tane Mahuta'. On route back to Auckland we will visit the idyllic Kai Iwi Lakes for a swim in the beautiful crystal clear waters that are surrounded by white sandy beach.Activities included: Hokianga Ferry ride, sand boarding, visit Waipoua Forest and Tane Mahuta, swim in the Kai Iwi Lakes

$91.73 Cultural & Theme Tours

Giants and Glow Worms Day Tour

Experience an unforgettable journey into a unique part of New Zealand – the Hokianga. Visit this special region, discovered over 1,000 years ago by the Maori voyager Kupe, hear its legends, and venture into the Waipoua forest to meet the mighty kauri tree Tāne Mahuta. Depart from Paihia at 8.00am in your air conditioned mini van with your driver / guide for the day following the historical trading trail to the Hokianga where we will meet  your local Maori guide, then venture into the ancient Waipoua Kauri Forest for an unforgettable encounter. Learn about life in the forest and hear Maori waiata (songs), myths and legends as your guide takes you on an intimate journey through nature and explains how the lives of local Maori are intertwined with the forest. The Waipoua forest is home to some of the most significant kauri trees still standing. Te Matua Ngahere (The Father of the Forest) is estimated to be between 2,500 and 3,000 years old, with a girth of 16 metres, while The Four Sisters are a graceful collection of kauri that have grown close together in sibling harmony. Finally, meet a national icon, the truly impressive Tane Mahuta (the Lord of the Forest). The largest known kauri tree in the world and aged up to 2,500 years old, his mighty girth is over 13 metres and he stands an impressive 51 metres (167 feet) high. Stand beneath this ancient giant and hear the legend of how he separated earth and sky at the beginning of the world. After your forest encounter, spend some time in the Hokianga town of Opononi before turning back towards Paihia along the old stagecoach route. This trail was first marked out by early Maori and then frequented by traders and merchants who transported supplies, kauri, gum and timber between the coasts. On your way back, stop at the Kawiti Glow-worm Caves and discover one of Northland's best-kept secrets. These family-run caves will delight you with twinkling glow-worms, amazing limestone rock formations including stalactites and stalagmites, all surrounded in lush green native forest. Your driver / guide will return you back to Paihia at 4pm