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Exploring New Zealand – Russell

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Russell, also known as Kororareka in the early 19th century, was the first permanent European settlement and port in New Zealand. It is situated in the Bay of Islands, in the far north of the North Island around 1.5 hours from Whangarei.

There are three ways you can get there. First driving all the way around. Second, drive to Paihia and take a ferry that also loads cars. Or you can drive to Paihia, park your car and take a passage only little ferry across the bay, which is what we did.

We parked our car along the Paihia beach (free parking), we wander a little bit around as the view beautiful. It’s worth mentioning that Paihia is very touristic and there is a multitude of activities end excursion you can do. From walks to whale watching, kayak tours, scenic fly tours, scenic cruises and many more.

So we took the little ferry, the price was around £6 both ways per person and it takes around 15min to do the crossing.

Russell is a very small town, it had around 720 inhabitants and some buildings are still surviving from the 19th century.


Once there, we took a small walk to the Flagstaff or Maiki Hill which is an important Bay of Islands historic landmark. We stay there and admired the view and the tranquillity for a little, and then we took your way down to the town again.


We had a nice little coffee and where exhaustion slowly came we took the ferry back to Paihia and back to Whangarei.

This is it for our fourth day, It was a very calm day just to recover from the jet lack and get ready from some adventures.

5 thoughts on “Exploring New Zealand – Russell”

    1. Thank you 🙂 ! I really hope you’ll have the opportunity to go once everything goes back to “normal”. It’s a beautifully country and the people are amazing. It’s worth the money and time to visit! I’m planning to go again because “quarantine” and “lockdown” ruined my last week there and now I have an unfinished bucked list.

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