"Bay of Islands - summertime holiday capital!" Bay of Islands by worldkiwi

Bay of Islands Travel Guide: 123 reviews and 332 photos

A Summer-time Paradise!

In January 2004 I visited the Bay of Islands in summer for the first time! I felt that I had escaped to another country for the four days I was there. Sparkling clear water, outdoor bars you can comfortably sit in till 1am, hot and sunny days, beautiful white sand beaches, dolphins, and a holiday feel you can't get anywhere else in NZ, make the Bay of Islands a place I will always have fond memories of.
In 2006, I enjoyed another short break in the Bay of Islands. This time, the weather wasn't so kind, but despite persistent low cloud, it was warm and humid. The weather didn't put us off outdoor activities and the highlight of the trip was getting to swim with bottlenose dolphins!

Fantastic spot for a summer holiday!

Visit the Bay of Islands during New Zealand's summer: December to March. The best months are usually the latter half of January and all through February. The evenings can be a bit cooler in March (actually autumn), but the days are usually dry and sunny. Also, in Feb and Mar, all the NZers are back at work (unfortunately for us). Make sure you get out on a boat at least once and see the Bay of Islands from the best vantage point.
Must do:
dolphin watching;
visit Urupukapuka Island;
explore Russell;
swim at a beach on Urupukapuka Island;
wander around the Waitangi Historic reserve, where modern NZ was born;
dine outside on a warm summer evening;
kayak somewhere.

Dolphin watching in the Bay of Islands.

On the two summer trips I've made to the Bay of Islands as an adult, I have gone on the same dolphin watching trip - with Awesome Adventures (Fullers), from Paihia. Both trips were great, and the 2006 one was very memorable because we got to swim with bottlenose dolphins! See my 'must do' section.

Pros and Cons
  • Pros:Warm summer nights, great nightlife, beautiful beaches, sparkling bays, serene islands!
  • Cons:I can't think of any!
  • In a nutshell:Great place for a holiday!
  • Last visit to Bay of Islands: Jan 2006
  • Intro Updated May 9, 2016
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Reviews (7)

Comments (3)

  • vtveen's Profile Photo
    May 11, 2006 at 2:34 AM

    On our visit we have to do the dolphin watch. Great tips !!

  • Nov 13, 2004 at 2:49 PM

    PIcked up some great tips from your site for my forthcoming visit . Great photo's. Thanks. New Zealand looks really beautiful.

  • rozehill's Profile Photo
    Feb 5, 2004 at 2:26 AM

    You have wonderful views of the beaches here and the white sands are splendid, great page!


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