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View across the bay of Island towards the
'Hole in the Rock'.

On the east coast of Northland is the Bay of
Islands.
This large bay is so named because of the numerous islands that are dotted around it.
The bay itself is a marine reserve but having said that there are people who do live on some of these islands, much to the envy of those who
take the daily trip around the bay and out to the Hole in the Rock.
This is a trip not to be missed. It leaves Paihia and Russell touring the bay with the captain giving a commentary .Providing that the sea is clement enough the Captain will navigate the Catamaran through the large arch in the Hole in the Rock which is at the southern end of the bay. The places of habitation in the Bay of Island are Russell , Paihia and Waitangi.
There is a ferry service between Russell and Paihia which is modestly priced and frequent,starting at 7 O'clock in the morning and running until late in the evening.

Paihia comes to life in the summer over the Christmas period when there is a parade and a Hangi which is fun day.

Waitangi is the old governors residence and where the Waitangi treaty was signed between the Maori's and the British Monarchy, who were represented by Naval officers. The Governors residence is now a museum , across the road is Kelly Tarlton's ship wreck museum. In the New year as part of the Christmas festivities there is a tall boat race which can be watched from flag staff hill, Russell. There are numerous aquatic activities in the Bay of Island such as the world famous Marlin fishing.
You can also swim with the dolphins that frequent the Bay of Islands. This is very exhilarating as the guide has to search for the pod which can take you from one end of the bay of Islands to the other,
very quickly. Once having located the pod you get to swim with them for about half an hour.
In winter the dolphins swim north and the trips are made out into the bay to see the migrating Orca's - Killer Whales which again is exciting but you dont get to swim with them.
The Bay of Island's is blessed with numerous bays and islands ,some are secluded, such as Oke Bay, you can relax and get away from it all ,well until the tide comes in. There are bays as well that are very popular that get extremely packed in the summer especially during the Christmas period.
What ever your reason for visiting the Bay of Islands you are sure to have an interesting time that will give you lots of wonderful memories.