Motuora Island

Conservation island in the Hauraki Gulf, famous for its kiwi sanctuary. Isolated beaches, amazing clifftop walks with beautiful views, and places to camp overnight. 90 mins from Auckland.

Motuora Island is one of the Auckland region's most unspoilt paradises. A conservation reserve, the island has its own 'kiwi creche', where young kiwi are nurtured and protected, until they're strong enough to live life on their own.

There are some seriously scenic spots to explore here, from rugged coastline walks and lush, shaded woodland, to secret beaches, ideal for picnics. There are no shops or services on the island, so you'll need to bring your own supplies, but if you're after somewhere to really get away from it all, this is the place. You can camp overnight or, if you're lucky, bag the accommodation at the island's only holiday cottage.

The majority of the island is used as a natural reserve - thousands of seedlings are planted each year, to encourage the growth of native tree species. And the island is free from predators, too, so the kiwi and the trees and plants have a better chance at surviving unhindered. You'll need to hire a private boat or water taxi to take you here, and landing is available at one of the beaches, or via the jetty.

Why not volunteer for one of the one-day or five-day programmes, and make a direct, personal contribution to the island's natural upkeep? Whatever you decide to do here, you're guaranteed peace and quiet, and a real escape from the pressures of urban life.

How To Get There:

Motuora Island is located in the Hauraki Gulf, a few miles off the Mahurangi Heads. You can charter a water taxi from Sandspit Wharf, Warkworth (Phone 0800 111 616).