Time Required : 3 - 5 hours
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Kawau Island located in Auckland is one of the largest islands that form the Hauraki Gulf. The island got its name from the Kawau Paka which is a tiny shag cormorant found on the island. Rich in biodiversity, Kawau Island is a paradise where flora and fauna peacefully co-exist. The island proudly hosts copper and manganese mines, forests and windswept beaches. Kawau Island offers exhilarating water sports that will surely blow your mind. With so much to explore, Kawau Island is a must-visit.
Kawai Islands attracted Ngatitai and Ngatiwai as the early settlers in the area owing to its strategic location of being near water that would facilitate easy passing of vehicles. In 1831, owner of the vessel Sucidan, Mr Wheelan struck an agreement with the ones who exercised power here to transfer Kawau to him in exchange of a befitting consideration. Subsequently, he found copper and manganese mines here. In 1841, James Forbes Beattie acquired the Maori land with the intent to improve agriculture and grazing here. In 1855 the mining operations stopped and the land came under Sir George Grey in the year 1862. Under his private ownership, he created Mansion Bay House.
The Kawau Island Historic Reserve was created to protect Sir George’s historic home. Soon in 1867, he left the ownership and after that, it changed many hands. In 1912 Andrew Farmer converted the island into a resort. After this, it went under a string of changes and additions to make it what it is today.