Kerikeri - Bay of Islands, New Zealand
Some say the name means " Dig-Dig" and this would be apt for the citrus capital of New Zealand. Kerikeri's warm sub tropical microclimate supports the horticulture that produces roadside stalls selling fresh fruit and vegetables.
Kerikeri was the pa site of the fearsome Maori chief Hongi Hika, who terrorised many tribes throughout the North Island in the early 1800's. Assured by Hongi that they would be welcome, the early missionaries to New Zealand from the English Church Missionary Society, decided to make the Kerikeri Basin the site of their second mission station. The rich soil would return plentiful produce to sustain the group lead by Reverend Samuel Marsden.
John Butler built the country's oldest house, Kemp House in 1822. The Stone Store followed and by 1836 was in use as the mission store. These wonderful buildings, together with the replica Maori village, Rewa's village, on the opposite bank are regarded as the "Cradle of the Nation" and are a must for all visitors to the Bay of Islands.
Within minutes by car or an hour's walk from the Basin carpark is the 27 metre Rainbow Falls (Ani aniwaniwa-waters of the rainbow). Further afield lies the Puketi Forest, an ideal place to tramp and view Kauri trees.. Within the forest is the Puketi Mokau Reserve which approximately 319 hectares big. It was last logged in the 1920's and has since regenerated, home to Kiwi, Kukupa, Tui, Grey warbler, Pied Tit and Fantail.
Kerikeri is noted for its arts and crafts and has an Art &Craft Trail to add further interest to your stay. The town has excellent sporting facilities, a championship golf course, all-weather tennis court, a yacht club. One of the fastest growing urban centres, Kerikeri has a population of about 6000.
A wide variety of accommodation styles ensure your stay is comfortable and today's Kerikeri is the bustling business and commerce centre of the Bay of Islands. An extensive array of shops and services, including the only cinema in the area, will cater for all your requirements. Kerikeri is where New Zealand bicultural society began and its beautiful scenery, charm and historic basin will entice you.
Places of interest: Stone Store & Kemp House at Kerikeri Basin, Rewa's Village, Pa Site, Steamboat Ride, Rainbow Falls, Pioneer & Transport Museum, Wineries, Chocolate Factory, Farmers Market, Waimate Mission Station, Puketi Forest (north of Kerikeri)
Maori place name: keep on digging.
Accommodation in and around Kerikeri
Major Towns in the Bay of Islands:
Waitangi | Paihia | Opua | Russell | Kerikeri | Kawakawa
Bay of Islands History