Whangaroa Harbour - New Zealand

Whangaroa Harbour's scenery is awe-inspiring, with towering sheer bluffs and volcanic rock formations protruding through steep forested shores, its colours reflected in tranquil water. North of the Bay of Islands in New Zealand, this dramatic harbour offers sights like the Kairara Rocks or The Dukes Nose, named after the likeness to the Duke of Wellington or Ohauroro or Peach Island which dominates the central channel. The eastern side is terraced where the pallisades once were and in 1809 it is recorded that over 300 maori lived on the Island. Whangaroa township is one of New Zealand's premier game fishing destinations. Behind the town is a walking track to the top of St Pauls peak where fabulous views looking down the harbour can be appreciated. Whangaroa's immediate history goes back to Maori settlement, a mission station, gum digging, and a prodigious boom time when kauri logs were brought from the surrounding hills in enormous quantities, settlements and mills flourished, and busy shipbuilding yards operated around the harbour. In the years between 1850 and 1909 these shipyards produced over 100 ships - schooners, brigantines and ketches - which sailed the high seas and ended up in all corners of the globe.