Located in the western Bay of Plenty in the North Island, Matakana Island, also known as the Jewel of the Bay, is a flat, long barrier island that stretches for as much as 20 kilometers, which is 12 miles, but the width runs for only about three kilometers, which is 1.9 miles wide. The Matakana Island is known for the unique geology and history of the region, and the varied biodiversity found in the waters and on land as well. The estuarial waters are home to lots of interesting aquatic animals, like stingrays, dolphins, whales, sharks and fish like snapper, kahawai, trevally, tarakihi and the kingfish.
The inner harbour side of the island has mostly fertile, horticultural land that is used for dairy farming. The ‘barrier’ which protects the inner harbour side with its dense pine forests which face the ocean surf on the Pacific Ocean is where the white sandy beaches are found, stretching from the northern harbour entrance located at Bowentown Heads to the Tauranga Harbour entrance which lies opposite to Mauao at Mount Maunganui.
The island is known to be populated by the Maori Tribes that remain associated with Ngai Te Rangi, and the latest census reads not more than around 300 people residing in the area, with only 90 inhabited dwellings, making it the third least populated area in the Western Bay of Plenty.
The Matakana Islands were the subject of a landmark case that was appealed to the Judicial Committee of the Privy Council from the New Zealand High Court, namely Arklow Investments Limited and Christopher Wingate v. I.D. Maclean and Others wherein the ownership of the 10,000 acres of land was disputed from the year 1993 to 1999.
The islands are also known to be home to three maraes, which are cleared land areas that hold a religious significance, belonging to the Ngai Te Rangi hapu. The three maraes, namely Kutaroa Marae, Opureora Marae, and the Oruarahi Marae are affiliated with Ngati Tauaiti, Ngai Tuwhiwhia and Ngai Tamawhariua respectively.
$ 216 onwards
$ 259 onwards
$ 194 onwards
$ 236 onwards
$ 211 onwards
$ 30 onwards