The Greenwood Guide to New Zealand
East Coast, New Zealand

Nature and Activities in East Coast, New Zealand

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Dive Tatapouri

Gisborne

Adventure activities

Although they run excellent diving courses, this is more than just a dive crew. With superb eco-tours available you can dip in on various conservation projects (feed wild stingray and lend a hand protecting the blue penguin) or choose to get up close and personal with a shark (don’t worry, a safety cage is included). The fascinating gliding, waddling and biting aquatic species all trigger informed asides from Dean Savage who, after 20 years' commercial diving experience, certainly knows his stuff.

Dive Tatapouri
  • Prices: Prices vary depending on course and trips.
  • Contact: SH35, Tatapouri, Gisborne
  • Tel: 027-4571-876
  • Email: divetatapouri@xtra.co.nz
  • Web: www.divetatapouri.com
  • Updated: 31/01/2008

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Eastwoodhill Aboretum

Gisborne

Botany & gardens

Eastwood Hill Arboretum, New Zealand’s national home for trees, boasts the largest collection of northern hemisphere trees in the south. With six walking tracks of assorted lengths and difficulty you can explore the 150 hectares of lofty collaged canopies and remarkable homestead gardens for as long as you wish. Guided walks and 4WD tours are also available.

  • Prices: Entry fee: adult $10, senior citizens $8, children free (accompanied by paying adult).
  • Contact: 2392 Wharekopae Road, Gisborne
  • Tel: 06-863-9003
  • Fax: 06-863-9093
  • Email: office.eastwoodhll@xtra.co.nz
  • Web: www.eastwoodhill.org.nz
  • Updated: 31/01/2008

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Morere Hot Springs

Morere

Thermal springs

This is definitely worth a stop-off when driving from Napier to Gisborne. Steaming away, hidden in lush jungly forest, Morere’s natural hot springs come in a variety of temperatures and contain a cocktail of rich therapeutic minerals. Set in 364 hectares of nature reserve you can take a 20-minute stroll or a 3-hour trek before soothing your body in the healing waters (which, if you’re interested, are often referred to as ‘fossilised sea water’ and emerge from a fractured fault-line running across the Mangakawa Valley). Geoff, the man in charge, swears he’s getting younger by the day from his regular soaks.

Morere Hot Springs
  • Prices: Entry: adults $5, children $2.50, non-swimmers $2.50. Private Pools $3 pp for half an hour. Towels $2. Light snacks and drinks available from on-site shop.
  • Contact: State Highway 2, Morere, Gisborne
  • Tel: 06-837-8856
  • Fax: 06-837-8873
  • Email: morerehotsprings@xtra.co.nz
  • Web: www.morerehotsprings.com
  • Updated: 31/01/2008

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East Coast Highlights

  • Circumnavigate the East Cape on SH35, a route virtually untouched by tourism. The rugged landscape is an astounding combination of coastal beauty, pohutukawa trees and dense inland forest. Potter from one isolated bay to the next, chill out on remote beaches and observe the strong Maori influence in this region before bagging a photo of the East Cape Lighthouse and Tolga Bay Wharf (the longest pier in NZ). Don't forget your surfboard.
  • Lose yourself in Te Urewera National Park tramping its Lake Waikaremoana Great Walk (ensuring that you find yourself again, of course).
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