Explore Central Hawke's Bay

Get off the beaten track and take a short drive south of Napier & Hastings to explore Central Hawke’s Bay. With some of the best beaches, fishing and diving spots, water sport, cycling, an incredible number of historic homesteads and so much more - there are plenty of reasons to stop and stay.

Central Hawke’s Bay runs from Pukehou and Otane in the north to Takapau in the south. If you head west you’ll find yourself at the foot of the Ruahine Ranges, home to some excellent walking and tramping tracks, a wander up to Sunrise Hut is a must.  To the east you’ll find six unique beaches, each offering a different experience from swimming, diving, fishing, or just a relaxing stay with a seaside view.

If adventure on the water is what you’re after this Summer then Backpaddocks Lakes in Takapau is a must do. The purpose built lakes mean you can get the boat out and get on the water for wakeboarding, water-skiing and barefooting, and as New Zealand’s only venue to offer both boat and cable park riding, anyone can have a go on the water from beginner to pro. Their summer season runs Labour Weekend to Easter and booking is essential – bring you own gear or hire equipment when you arrive.

Join the Longridge Tour de Beautiful Central Hawke's Bay Cycling Challenge 2017 this Sunday 22nd January and see some magnificent Central Hawke' Bay scenery from your bike. This wonderful cycle challenge has been running for 24 years and there's a course for every ability and age - there's even an early start at 7 am for those wanting to take the ride a little slower. 

Central Hawke's Bay is made up of a number of towns and smaller settlements founded by the early pastoralists who bought up great chunks of land here in the second half of the 1800's - that rich farming history can be explored with a stop at any one of our many historic homesteads some of which open their doors to visitors for overnight stays, high tea's and lunches.

Waipukurau is the biggest town and the agricultural hub of Central Hawke’s Bay. With a vibrant main street there's a great selection of local shops and cafes and is a perfect base to start day trips and get out and explore the area.  A visit to the local Information Centre located at the old Railway Station on Bogle Brothers Esplanade is the best way to start exploring and tap into some handy local knowledge. 

Waipawa is just a 5 minute drive northeast of Waipukurau and is home to some of Hawke’s Bays best rainbow and brown trout fishing spots. Dotted along the main street are a number of boutique shops and cafes, and you’ll also find the Central Hawke’s Bay Settlers Museum, which offers a nostalgic glimpse of life back in the day with lots of hands on experiences for young and old.  It is also the hub of The Limestone Loop – a driving route through Otane, Waipawa and Tikokino where you can chose the pace and cater for your tastes with offerings of wine, shopping, culture, cafes and history.

Central Hawke's Bay stops

All this exploring and cycling will have you working up an appetite!

Check out our top 6 refuel spots  for top notch coffee, tasty meals and relaxing ambiance.