Located in the far north of New Zealand’s North Island, Paihia is a tourist town in the scenic Bay of Islands. Close to the historic towns of Kerikeri and Russel, Paihia is a busy seaside town just 60km north of Whanarei. Considered the ‘jewel of the Bay of Islands’, Paihia holidays offer a wonderful lifestyle with scenic walks, safe swimming beaches, golden sand and a huge range of leisure activities. Particularly popular in summer, Paihia is the gateway to the 144 islands that make up New Zealand’s Bay of Islands.
This Paihia travel guide is designed to help you make the most of your time in this picturesque seaside town. Rich in history, nearby Waitangi offers an insight into the culture where Europeans and Maoris meet with visitors from around the world. Sunbake on the beach, sail the glittering waters, explore scenic walking tracks, kayak around the islands and even swim with the dolphins in this natural marine paradise.
Overlooking some of the town’s most picturesque beaches, Paihia accommodation offers a great range of options for all travellers and budgets. Conveniently located close to a variety of shopping, dining and attractions around town, Paihia accommodation is also close to the Paihia Wharf and ranges from 3 stars to 5 stars and everything in between. Offering everything from cosy motels to luxury hotels, boutique resorts, charming bed and breakfasts and spacious, self-catering apartments, Paihia accommodation enjoys a great range of onsite facilities, many of which also boast panoramic beach and sea views. Book cheap Paihia Accommodation
Paihia attractions are all about experiencing this popular destination’s history and natural environment. Visit the Maori legend’s spirit departing place in Cape Regina or marvel at the amazing 2,000 year old Tane Mahuta, an icon in the majestic Waipoua Kauri Forest. Sail through the famous ‘hole in the rock’ or take the ferry to romantic Russell Island. Nearby Kaikohe offers an historic Pioneer Village while authentic Maori culture and important New Zealand history abounds at the significant site where the Treaty of Waitangi was first signed. The spectacular Haruru Falls are the perfect day out while the secluded beaches provide the perfect picnic spot. For those who want to get in the water, swimming, kayaking and fishing is common, however for a more exciting experience why not swim with the dolphins. Of course chilling out is just as popular in beautiful Paihia.
The European history of Paihia began back in 1769 when Captain James Cook sailed into the picturesque harbour and aptly named it Bay of Islands. However, Paihia got its name from Reverend Henry Williams, who knew very little Maori when he first arrived in Bay of Islands. However one of few words he did know was ‘pai’ meaning good. When they arrived, he told his Maori guide ‘pai here’ or good here, and the name stuck.