• Explore the East Cape of New Zealand

Explore the East Cape of New Zealand

The East Cape is a gem of a destination. Remote, isolated, time moves differently there. Beaches, the natural environment and community are foremost in the locals’ hearts and minds. Because of its remoteness, it’s worth planning your trip before you go so you don’t miss out on the must-sees and must-dos!

You’re spoilt for choice when it comes to off-the-beaten-track adventures in the area. You can see the first sunrise in the world in a guided experience atop Maunga Hikurangi – surrounded by exquisite carvings each with their own story. Or how about heading out to pat friendly wild stingrays at Tatapouri. Perhaps you could climb up to New Zealand’s most easterly lighthouse – East Cape Lighthouse – or Kaiti hill with its views of ocean and the Gisborne plains. Wainui beach has amazing surf, and the fishing on the 660m Tolaga Bay Wharf is not too bad either.

Tolaga Bay Wharf

The stunning Tolaga Bay Wharf

The Cape also has a wide range of food options including lots of local specialities on the menu – check out Te Araroa’s East Cape Manuka Company Café for amazing manuka and kawakawa teas, Ruatoria’s Hati Nati café for fried bread, Tolaga Bay’s Broad Bills food trailer for fresh pizza by the wharf, Tokomaru Bay’s Café 35 for acclaimed paua pies, and the Yummy Dumplings food trailer (Te Araroa and Ruatoria). Importantly, they all do a great coffee.
There’s a variety of places to stay on an East Cape trip. Hicks Bay Motel and Nga Puriri BnB place you in one of the most picturesque bays around. The tranquil Te Puia Springs historic hotel speaks to another era. Te Puka Tavern puts you swish new units right on Tokomaru Bay beach. Captain Cook Lodge and the Blackhouse Luxury Lodge are just two Gisborne options – at both ends of the budget scale.

Visiting the East Cape really is one of the New Zealand must-dos. The locals are all about warm hospitality and the area has something for all – memories of unique experiences such as Maunga Hikurangi’s Te Urunga-Tu sunrise experience or an up-close encounter with friendly stingrays will be treasured forever.

 

 

October 15, 2020

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Wow – ever wondered what it would feel like to stand on the very top of our Maunga when dusted in snow? Epic photo from LWimages featured on Epic Trails ⛰🧗‍♂️#tairawhitigisborne #maungahikurangi #firstlight #gisborne #sunrise #aotearoa
Standing sentinel before the dawn…our whakairo (carvings) are first to see the sun every day. What will your day bring today?#tairawhitigisborne #maungahikurangi #firstlight #gisborne #sunrise #aotearoa
On our sacred maunga, it’s a special experience to stand before nine magnificent whakairo (carvings) – each larger than life, each holding a story you can see, hear and touch 😮#tairawhitigisborne #maungahikurangi #firstlight #gisborne #sunrise #aotearoa
Home is where the heart is! The town of Ruatoria, 25km from the foot of Maunga Hikurangi, is a central location of our iwi, Ngati Porou. It's home to the famous Ruatoria Pies, Kai Kart and our tour pickup point, the Hati Nati Café!We look forward to welcoming you here before we take you on one of our tours 🤗#tairawhitigisborne #maungahikurangi #firstlight #ruatoria #ngatiporou
#gisborne #sunrise #aotearoa
Bundled up with helmets on, traversing the mountain slope in 4WD under a starry sky 🌠 – to marvel at otherworldly carvings. This is what you get to experience at dawn with our Te Urunga-Tu Sunrise Experience.#tairawhitigisborne #maungahikurangi #firstlight #ruatoria #ngatiporou
#gisborne #sunrise #aotearoa
Awe-inspiring! In this shot you can really take in the presence of our neighbouring Maunga Wharekia, standing 1106m tall and proud here on the East Cape, as the clouds race behind it (taken from Maunga Hikurangi which stands at 1754m) ☁️⛰#tairawhitigisborne #maungahikurangi #firstlight #ruatoria
#gisborne #sunrise #aotearoa
Take a look at @jesswawatai 's incredible shot during her recent sunrise tour!#tairawhitigisborne #maungahikurangi #firstlight #gisborne #repost
Did you know the carvers of our spectacular whakairo (carvings) were taught by Sir Derek Lardelli?A Gisborne local, Lardellli is a man of many talents. He’s one of Aotearoa’s finest tā moko artists, and composed Kapa-o-pango, the new All Black haka.#tairawhitigisborne #maungahikurangi #firstlight
#gisborne #sunrise #aotearoa
Epic contemplative sunrise photo from @east.az – who described our tour as an “unreal, authentic Maori experience.” Kia ora!📷: @east.az#tairawhitigisborne #maungahikurangi #firstlight
#gisborne #sunrise #aotearoa #repost
Under the dark Southern skies and a blanket of brilliant stars, the Te Urunga-Tu Sunrise Experience is an adventure like no other – come discover it with us.#tairawhitigisborne #maungahikurangi #firstlight
#gisborne #sunrise #aotearoa
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