For peace and relaxation island-style, take the ferry to Great Barrier Island and stay in a secluded Department of Conservation campsite.

Great Barrier DoC community relations ranger Rebecca Gibson said Akapoua Bay campsite at Port Fitzroy was one of the less busy spots on the island, with beautiful surroundings.

"It's a really lovely situated camp, it gets good sun and is nice and shady. It's a beautiful campground full of trees."

The campsite was right beside the water and boat-owners could moor their boats in the harbour. It was a sheltered bay surrounded by pohutukawa trees.


Gibson said although the bay was not a good place to swim, there was a nice creek people could walk to behind the camp for a dip, and a good swimming beach was within walking distance. Visitors could also go kayaking, fishing, swimming or mountain biking. There were walking tracks nearby, including a day walk to a kauri dam.

But it was also a good place to just relax and take in the scenery. "I think the best thing is the view - it's awesome," Gibson said.

She said a lot of families and retired people came to Akapoua Bay in the summer, but the camp was rarely booked out. She recommended booking a month in advance during the busy period.

As well as basic amenities, the campsite had a cooking shelter and a picnic area. The nearest shops were a walk away.

Camper's info
Getting there: Take the passenger or car ferry from Auckland to Port Fitzroy or Tryphena. The campsite is walking distance from Port Fitzroy or you can drive or take a shuttle from Tryphena.

Amenities: Tap water, toilets, rubbish bin, cold showers.
No pets or alcohol
No open fires
Bring a cooker or gas barbecue

Campsite fees: Adults $9.20 per night, children $4.60.
30 tent sites
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