A man has been taken to hospital in a serious condition after being attacked by bees north of Auckland this afternoon.

Emergency services were called to Leigh Rd in Matakana at 4.09pm, a St John Ambulance spokesman said.

The 50-year-old-man was initially listed as being in a critical condition but this was downgraded to serious after he was assessed by paramedics at the scene.

He has been to Auckland City Hospital by Auckland's Westpac Rescue Helicopter.