Welcome to Paihia the main tourist town in the Bay of Islands. Paihia is a great way to explore all of the Bay of Islands, a sub-tropical playground on the equator side of Auckland in New Zealand. Discover bays, beaches, islands and headlands which give unlimited opportunities for recreation and relaxation whilst holidaying in the North Island of New Zealand; there is something for everyone, making it one of the most popular destinations in NZ.

“I have named it the Bay of Islands” wrote Lieutenant James Cook in November 1769. Then, as now, the red pohutukawa flowers fringed the land framing the bays’ natural beauty in a red blaze. There are 144 islands contained in this visual paradise and the surrounding towns are brimming with activity. From Historic Kerikeri to the beaches of Paihia the Bay of Islands makes for an excellent holiday location with plenty to see and do.

The main tourist towns in the Bay of Islands are: Paihia, Russell, Kerikeri, Opua, and Whangaruru. The most popular destination in the Bay of islands is Paihia, because it’s the gateway to the Bay of islands due to it’s central location to all the islands. The Rock overnight boat cruise takes tourists to the various islands within the bay, with stop offs to go kayaking, swimming and snorkling to really get emmersed in the environment. Many of the islands still remain uninhabitated, so it really feels like your discovering a new place in the world.

Paihia accommodation is only minutes from the town centre and the main beach, ranging from budget backpackers hostels to more upmarket hotels and motel accommodation. There is accommodation suitable for all tastes and budgets. Many backpackers are attracted to Paihia and the surrounding towns in the Bay of islands during the summer months as there is always plenty of seasonal work on offer from the nearby orchid owners which are located along all the roads. It’s a great way to make a bit of money to extend your New Zealand holiday for a little longer, enabling many tourists and backpackers to head further south and explore more of what New Zealand has to offer.


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  1. Rod Ritchie says:

    A very accurate description of a great holiday destination. The author has captured this popular destination perfectly.