Trip Planner: South Pacific / New Zealand / North Island / Northland Region / Bay of Islands / Paihia / Urupukapuka Island
Urupukapuka Island is the largest island in the Bay of Islands of New Zealand, located about 7.3 km from Paihia.
Urupukapuka Island was previously settled by the Ngare Raumati tribe, one of the oldest tribes of the area. In 1839, William Brind, a whaling captain, claimed to have purchased 150 acres of Urupukapuka from Rewa, a chief of the Ngapuhi tribe, for one mare valued at 45 English pounds. The claim was invalidated when Rewa claimed that the mare represented a mere deposit and not the whole lump sum amount. In the later 1800s, two Europeans leased some of the land on Urupukapuka for grazing and began to clear the island and build a fenceline.
In 1927, Otehei Bay had become the base of the fishing expeditions of the American author Zane Grey, and a world-famous fishing resort was later established there.
The island is 208 hectares in size. There are many sandy beaches. The waters around the island are clear and diving is particularly good on the east coast where there is plentiful reef life. Indico and Paradise Bays are popular sheltered anchorages and ideal for most forms of water sports. The bays are also inhabited by a colony of shags, and pohutukawas are abundant along the coastline. The New Zealand dotterel, oyster catcher, pied stilt and paradise duck breed on the island. The archeological features of Urupukapuka are interesting because of their range, the diversity of sites, and their good state of preservation. An archeological walk with on-site signs interprets many of the pre-European sites on the island. Urupukapuka is ideal for 'back to nature' camping. The informal camping is made possible by combining farming with recreation.
Use our Paihia trip itinerary maker to visit Urupukapuka Island on your trip to Paihia, and learn what else travelers and our writers recommend seeing nearby.
Tours To Urupukapuka Island
Bays and Beaches Cruise with optional Island Extension BOOK WITH VIATOR FROM $38
Duration: 1 hour 30 minutes
Bay of Islands Dolphin Nature Cruise BOOK WITH VIATOR FROM $82
Duration: 4 hours
Urupukapuka Island Reviews
Called in to Urupukapuka Island on the way back from a Hole in the Rock cruise. Beautiful spot, had lunch at the cafe/ bar, great selection and very nice. Unfortunately we didn't have much time so... more »
Great little hike up to see 360 degree views of the beautiful bays. Don't just sit at the pub or you will miss it. more »
One of my favourite islands.
Visited as part of a hole in the rock tour. Stopped here for an included BBQ. NOW was very basic probably only to be expected given cosy of whole trip. Facilities on the island for the 1hour break were good. The bar was good, the drinks cold and the toilets clean. Had time for either a short walk or a swim whilst here. We desk and was great. Plenty of grass at a to lay out on and outside tables to use.
Places to stay near Urupukapuka Island
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