Accommodation in Gisborne, New Zealand
This is the best place to base yourself and get a good taste of the East Cape region.
Gisborne, the first city in the world to see the sun each day, is located on the sunny East Coast of the North Island.
The Maori name for the district is Tairawhiti which means "The coast upon which the sun shines across the water". Kaiti Beach, near the city, was where the Maori immigrational waka, Horouta, landed and is also the first European landing place in New Zealand.
Captain Cook first set foot here in 1769. European settlement was established in 1831 and the town which developed was named after Hon. William Gisborne, the Colonial Secretary, in 1870.
Prior to this the settlement was known as Turanga but confusion with Tauranga, Bay of Plenty, led to the name change. To the early Maori, the Poverty Bay area was known as Turanganui-a-Kiwa, "The stopping place of Kiwa". Gisborne became a borough in 1877 and a city in 1955.
Wineries & Vineyards
Gisborne is one of New Zealand's largest grape growing regions with just over half its 2000 hectares of vineyards planted in Chardonnay. A Mediterranean climate and suitable soils are the key factors in the success of wine production in this region which regularly produces unique, full-flavoured, award winning wines of international standard.
We would be happy to help you organize a tour of the best vineyards.
Gisborne Historic Walk
1-3 hours. Enjoy a leisurely historic walk through Gisborne City taking in the rivers, harbour and sea. Take in the district's past, present and future.
Titirangi Domain / Kaiti Hill: Provides great views of the city. Hike up the walkways to make the most of Titirangi Recreational Reserve's native trees, picnic areas, fitness trail.
The impressive 660 metre pier or wharf is the Tolaga Bay landmark of this small seaside settlement. Stroll out to its furthest point for spectacular coastal views.
There is the Cook's Cove walkway which is connected to Tolaga Bay by the rocky Tupaea's Cavern, which also provides picturesque coastal views.
Tolaga Bay is only a 45 minute drive from Gisborne.
Morere hot springs
The natural mineral hot pools at Morere Springs Scenic Reserve are a popular local attraction and one of New Zealand's off-the-beaten-track thermal bathing sites. Located in an isolated corner of New Zealand?s North Island, just 30 minutes from Gisborne on the SH2, the hot springs are a tranquil haven where the mineralised waters are said to be amongst the most rejuvenating and unique in the world.
The Mahia peninsula is situated 1 hour from Gisborne (direction Napier). The peninsula is a beautiful, hilly promontory, with isolated golden sand beaches and wonderfully clear water. It attracts people from all over the country to take part in the numerous outdoor sports that this area is suited to, yet there are no hotels, resorts or amusement parks and everything remains truly wild.
Within the peninsula is the Mahia Scenic Reserve, a lowland coastal forest which has excellent walking tracks.
Urewera National Park and Waikaremoana
The Lake Waikaremoana area of Te Urewera National Park is a marvellous destination for walkers.
Located 160 km from Gisborne (2 hours) the Te Urewera National Park protects the largest area of native forest remaining in the North Island. The high, misty ridges are covered with silver and mountain beech. At lower levels, the forest is dominated by red beech, rimu, rata, tawa and kamahi. Nearly all of New Zealand's native birds live in the forest, including rare species such as the North Island brown kiwi, blue duck (whio), yellow-crowned parakeet (kakariki), bush parrot (kaka), New Zealand falcon (karearea) and the blue-wattled kokako.
For hikers, kayakers and fly-fishing enthusiasts, the park's main attraction is Lake Waikaremoana. From the visitor centre at Aniwaniwa, short and long walks provide access to the lake's spectacular scenery and legendary fishing spots. In a small basin above the big lake is island-dotted Lake Waikareiti, a haven for native aquatic life.