Top things to do

Top Choice Park in Hastings & Around

Te Mata Peak

Rising dramatically from the Heretaunga Plains 16km south of Havelock North, Te Mata Peak (399m) is part of the 1-sq-km Te Mata Trust Park. The summit road passes sheep tracks, rickety fences and vertigo-inducing st…
Top Choice Church in Pacific Coast Hwy

St Mary’s Church

If you haven't yet made it into a marae (meeting house), you’ll get a fair idea of what you’re missing out on by visiting the extraordinary St Mary’s Church, built in 1924. It’s nothing special from the outside, but…
Top Choice Bistro in Gisborne

Crawford Road Kitchen

Attached to the Gisborne Wine Centre, this bistro combines culinary smarts and international flavours with an interesting location beside Gisborne's inner harbour. Good-value shared plates could include feta-crusted…
Top Choice Modern NZ in Hastings & Around

Elephant Hill

There's plenty of great vineyard dining around Hawke's Bay, but Elephant Hill in the beachy surroundings of Te Awanga is something special. Huge picture windows provide unencumbered views of Cape Kidnappers and vine…
Top Choice Modern NZ in Napier

Bistronomy

Bistronomy is proof that some of NZ's best food can be enjoyed outside the country's biggest cities. The finely judged seasonal tasting menus, which could include sumac-cured kingfish or chicken poached in kawakawa …
Top Choice Cafe in Hastings & Around

Opera Kitchen

Located in a high-ceilinged heritage building – formerly the HB Electric Power Board – our favourite Hastings cafe serves up sophisticated breakfast and lunch dishes with international accents. Spend a few hours bro…
Top Choice Cafe in Hastings & Around

Maina

Blur the line between breakfast and lunch at the best new cafe in Hawke's Bay. This former post office is infused with stylish retro Kiwiana decor, and highlights include Te Mata mushrooms on organic sourdough or cr…
Top Choice Museum in Napier

MTG Hawke’s Bay

The beating cultural heart of Napier is the smart-looking MTG. It's a gleaming-white museum-theatre-gallery space by the water, and it brings live performances, film screenings and regularly changing gallery and mus…
Top Choice Craft Beer in Hastings & Around

GodsOwn Brewery

This super microbrewery 22km east of Hastings is run from a safari tent, a caravan and a few outdoor tables. On a compact brewing set-up, traditional European beer styles like biere de gardes and saisons are crafted…
Top Choice Modern NZ in Napier

Mister D

This long, floorboarded room with its green-tiled bar is the pride of the Napier foodie scene. Hip and slick but not unaffordable, with quick-fire service delivering the likes of pulled pork with white polenta or ro…