Whangārei city

People sitting in the Cameron Street paved area of the main Whangārei shopping centre, with lovely gardens around them.

Whangārei city, approximately two hours north of Auckland and an hour from the Bay of Islands, is Northland’s only city and largest commercial centre. It's a fantastic place to base yourself for exploring the rest of Northland.

The central city

Everywhere is within walking distance as the land is flat and the city is compact. The heart of the city is closed to vehicle traffic and has attractive gardens, seating and sculpture. Visit Quality Street for a great choice of casual dining options and shopping.

Follow the Street Prints Manaia Art Trail with 15 beautiful, large scale art murals based on the theme “Tuia te muka Tāngata” “Weaving the Threads of Humanity”. Download or view a map of the Trail here.

The Whangārei Growers Market, held 6am to 10.30am every Saturday at Water Street, offers an abundance of locally grown produce along with preserves, honey, eggs, beef, flowers and more. Find out about other markets that are held regularly throughout the city and suburbs.

Eat, drink, shop and play


Kiwis, treasures, parks and gardens

Kiwi North and Heritage Park in Maunu, 10 minutes from the city centre, is the only nocturnal kiwi house north of Auckland where you can see live kiwi birds. There are loads of other amazing things to delight you; trains, vehicles and engines, Māori taonga (treasures), military items, colonial buildings and household items, historical medical collection. Enjoy the Fun Days, held monthly when everything is up and running and you can ride a miniature train!  

Laurie Hall Park features the ANZAC Memorial and WW1 cenotaph memorial. There's also a playground for the kids and lovely gardens with grassed areas and picnic tables.

Inner city Cafler Park has beautiful, mature specimen trees and lovely rose gardens with the Waiarohia River runs along its boundary. Cross the pedestrian bridge to Botanica Whangārei which featurs displays of colourful subtropical flowers and houses containing cool, green ferns and filmy ferns.

Whangārei Quarry Gardens is set in over 60 acres of a former quarry. The unique microclimate is ideal for growing an abundance of native and exotic subtropical plants. The gardens feature a lake, waterfall, walking paths, forest walks, a variety of garden styles and several historic remnants. Find a perfect picnic spot or relax in the café.

The Quarry Art Centre is a cooperative of artists set within a serene bush-clad former quarry site. Exhibitions are held regularly and artists' work is available for sale at the onsite Quarry Co-op Shop.

Take a dip

The Whangārei Aquatic Centre has a choice of pools, swim some laps, catch a wave, relax in the spa or recover in the hydrotherapy pool.

The inner harbour Onerahi foreshore, just ten minutes drive from the city centre, is also a mostly sheltered place to enjoy a swim.

For the dogs

The Whangārei Dog Agility Park is a fenced space for dogs to be let of the leash to play, socialise and exercise, located close to the Hātea Loop walkway where dogs can be walked on the leash.

Take a walk or jump on your bike

The city and these forests are connected by a network of more than 20km of mostly off-road Shared Paths for cycling and walking, many of them are also fully-accessible. 

Enjoy the Hātea River Walk between the city and Otuihau Whangārei Falls, through forest and farmland, cross bridges and enjoy the sights, sounds and smells of our beautiful natural forest. The complete walk will take approximately three hours one way.

The A H Reed Memorial Park is a five minute drive from the city centre and features a tree-top board walk and stately kauri trees. 

Pohe Island Bike Park is your ‘one-stop' cycling destination with a smooth-surface Circuit Track, Traffic Skills and Coaching area beginner bike skills track and world-class Pump Track; all just a heartbeat away from the inner city and connecting to a network of trails around Whangārei.

Whangārei Falls / Otuihau

A picturesque 26m high waterfall with native forest and lovely picnic spots. Enjoy the view from three easy to access viewing platforms or walk the short loop track to the base of the waterfall. Find out about Otuihau and other waterfalls in the District here.

After enjoying the city centre, don't miss a visit to the lovely waterside Town Basin precinct for restaurants and cafes, museums and galleries, playgrounds and shopping.

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