Sleeping giants and hidden swimming holes: Eight purely natural wonders in Hawke’s Bay

A glistening, freshly loaded wine glass isn’t really the only detail well worth admiring in Hawke’s Bay. Involving towering waterfalls, dramatic coastal cliffs and historical mountains steeped in Māori mythology, the east coastline location dishes up a array of stunning all-natural miracles. In this article are 8 worth examining out on your following take a look at.

Lake Waikaremoana

Lake Waikaremoana is one of NZ's ten Great Walks.

Joe Fowl & Cat Smith

Lake Waikaremoana is just one of NZ’s 10 Great Walks.

Around a three-hour generate from Napier in Te Urewera is the significant and deep Lake Waikaremoana – the North Island’s fourth-biggest human body of water.

Māori legend has it the ‘sea of rippling waters’ was produced by a powerful taniwha who was making an attempt to escape her father and achieve the sea. As mountains and gorges ended up pushed away it formed the Whanganui Inlet and lake mattress. The space is also stated to have been a hiding location for Māori chief Te Kooti.

An historical petrified forest sits beneath the water’s floor and the lake is surrounded by mountain ranges and a single of the North Island’s largest untouched native forests.

The 46km a person-way Lake Waikaremoana Observe is a single of New Zealand’s most remote Fantastic Walks. It is a a few- to four-day hike as a result of valleys of bush and podocarp forest throughout boardwalks and bridges. It follows the southern and western coast of the lake. The keep track of and lake are both equally now shut to the general public.

Read Much more:
* Just one of the ‘most beautiful’ bicycle rides in Hawke’s Bay
* Major 10 concealed gems of Hawke’s Bay
* Top secret waterfalls close to New Zealand
* Hawke’s Bay: The Mediterranean of New Zealand

Cape Kidnappers/Te Kauwae-a-Māui

Cape Kidnappers dates back five million years.


Cape Kidnappers dates again 5 million years.

One more breathtaking internet site with historic significance is Cape Kidnappers/Te Kauwae-a-Māui. In accordance to Māori custom, the extraordinary headland signifies the hook that Māui used to fish up the North Island/Te-Ika-a-Māui.

Dating back again five million decades, the towering cliffs are manufactured from a recipe of sandstone, river gravel, petrified wood and fossilised bones and shells. To definitely get an appreciation of their mighty stature, site visitors can just take the 19km wander alongside the seaside. Sightseers really should be prepared: it is only accessible at minimal tide and is topic to landslides.

The world’s major and most available mainland gannet colony sits at the major of the 8km peninsula. Excursions can be taken to see the seabirds in their organic habitat – some 20,000 of them – which obtain from spring to develop nests for the arrival of chicks. You are going to also uncover 1 of the world’s very best golfing courses and luxury vacation resort The Farm on the picture-postcard headland.

Maraetotara Falls

Maraetotara Falls spills into a glorious swimming hole.

Brook Sabin/Things

Maraetotara Falls spills into a superb swimming gap.

Found just 15 minutes exterior Havelock North and 40 minutes from Napier, the Maraetotara Falls swimming gap is nicely-cherished and recognized by Hawke’s Bay locals, but a hidden gem for those people new to the region.

To obtain the 15-metre tiered waterfall it’s an quick 10-moment wander from the carpark down wooden stairs and as a result of native bush. The big swimming hole is the perfect location to interesting off from the last of the scorching summer season – just be cautious swimming instantly down below the falls.

Between swims, there’s also the kilometre-extensive Maraetotara Historic Wander to the heritage ability station at the other conclude of the monitor.

Shine Falls

Shine Falls is Hawke's Bay's tallest waterfall.

Brook Sabin/Stuff

Shine Falls is Hawke’s Bay’s tallest waterfall.

A excursion to Glow Falls, Hawke’s Bay’s most impressive waterfall, is a different great way to expend a hot summer’s working day.

It sits an hour and a 50 % north of Napier, with a even further hour-long wander as a result of farmland, previous limestone formations and indigenous forest to get to the falls. It’s well worth the work the thunderous 58-metre drop, nestled in dense bush, is a wondrous sight and particularly well-known with locals.

On the push household, acquire a pitstop at Waipatiki Beach, a golden extend of sand with cliffs possibly side, for a awesome-off and ice cream.

Te Mata Peak

A visit to Te Mata Peak should be on every Hawke's Bay itinerary.


A stop by to Te Mata Peak should really be on each Hawke’s Bay itinerary.

Te Mata Peak is thought of to be the most considerable organic landscape in Hawke’s Bay.

It has cultural importance to Māori, with evidence of historical pā websites and settlement, whilst legend claims the hill portrays the physique of the Waimārama chief, Te Mata, who died while attempting to chunk his way via the earth.

The Te Mata Park Trust states early European settlers also believed the lofty mountain resembled a man lying down.

The Redwood Forest is found on Te Mata Peak.

Brook Sabin/Stuff

The Redwood Forest is discovered on Te Mata Peak.

Today, you can stroll, cycle or generate ideal to the summit of the “Sleeping Giant” for sweeping 360-diploma sights across Hawke’s Bay and Heretaunga Plains, from Māhia to Cape Kidnappers.

On the way down Te Mata Peak, pop into the Major Redwood Forest, exactly where you are going to obtain extra than 200 Californian redwoods – the tallest tree species in the earth.

Bell Rock

Bell Rock is worth the effort.

Brook Sabin/Things

Bell Rock is really worth the hard work.

New Zealand’s possess model of Delight Rock is tucked absent deep in Hawke’s Bay. It can be known as the Bell Rock Loop Keep track of, and there’s a little bit of hard work for your reward.

1st, there is an hour drive north of Napier. Then, a a few-hour loop observe via lush indigenous bush and across the rolling hills on the Maungaharuru Assortment.

At the best you’ll locate a collection of massive alien-like rocks clung to the facet of a cliff, overlooking the broad hinterland under. The rocks are open to walk on and have your “Rafiki” minute substantial over the Satisfaction Lands, but commonsense is crucial. DOC suggests “severe care” is essential, and young children need to also be supervised at all instances.

Whirinaki Te Pua-a-Tāne

Whirinaki Forest Park offers good walking tracks for all ages.


Whirinaki Forest Park features superior walking tracks for all ages.

The Bay of A good deal-Hawke’s Bay border cuts proper as a result of the center of this prehistoric rainforest.

The conservation park, frequently termed a ‘dinosaur park’ for its ancient species of rimu, tōtara, kahikatea, mataī and miro, stretches in excess of 60,000 hectares. Some of New Zealand’s rarest indigenous birds are living right here way too, such as brown kiwi, kākāriki, kākā and kārearea.

It features a wide variety of quick and multi-day walks for avid trampers. The Arohaki Lagoon Keep track of is a preferred 6km (3-hour) selection to a system seeking above the rain-fed lagoon surrounded by kahikatea. For the sophisticated, the a few-day Mangamate Loop Keep track of addresses a assortment of distinct terrain, which include river crossings, via the majestic podocarp forest.

Mōrere Warm Springs

Mōrere is tucked away in native rainforest, where rare hot saltwater bubbles up

Brook Sabin/Stuff

Mōrere is tucked absent in indigenous rainforest, wherever rare hot saltwater bubbles up

This sizzling spring escape is uncovered on the Pacific Coastline Freeway involving Gisborne and Hawke’s Bay, set in 364 hectares of rainforest.

What helps make this area impressive, and uncommon, is its h2o. What bubbles up is ancient seawater, some 250,000 litres a day, which will make its way to the area by way of a fault line. It is then cooled and pumped into the pools.

Some times the drinking water is hotter than some others. In 2019, staff found the swimming pools all greater in temperature in the days foremost up to the Whakaari/White Island eruption – anything industry experts have taken a keen fascination in.

Entry to the swimming pools is $14, and for $4 extra, you can guide a 30-moment soak session in a personal pool overlooking the nīkau forest.

Keeping protected: New Zealand is at the moment underneath Covid-19 limitations. Adhere to the directions at

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