Bay of Islands
Dolphins off bow © Kiwibob
The Bay of Islands is famous for its beautiful coastal scenery and is one of North Island's major attractions. The bay is interspersed with numerous little coves, inlets and sandy beaches, and the historical townships of Paihia, Waitangi and Russell are the central hubs of the area, from where an unbelievable array of activities and tours can be arranged. Sailing and boat cruises around the islands are the main attraction, but the natural surroundings and warm waters of the bay make it an ideal place for kayaking, swimming, diving and fishing. The bay is also of historical significance as the place where the Treaty of Waitangi was first signed between the European settlers and Maori chiefs in 1840.