Tiritiri Matangi Open Sanctuary picture1 of 4
Tiritiri Matangi Open Sanctuary2 of 4
Mark Meredith/Getty Images

Key Info

Wharf Road, Tiritiri Matangi Island, Army Bay

Details

Parks and Gardens, Zoos and Aquariums Type
2 hours to Half Day Time to Spend
4.4

scorecard

  • 4.0Value
  • 4.0Facilities
  • 5.0Atmosphere

Bird lovers and outdoor enthusiasts cannot miss a chance to visit Tiritiri Matangi Open Sanctuary. Located on Tiritiri Matangi Island in the Hauraki Gulf (and within view of Rangitoto Island and Waiheke Island), this wildlife sanctuary is considered one of New Zealand's most successful conservation projects. Notable wildlife found on the island include little spotted kiwis, tuis, tuataras and South Island takahes.

Recent visitors appreciated this wildlife sanctuary's natural beauty and its top-notch hiking trails, adding that they saw several bird species during their visits. To make the most of your time on the island, some recommended taking a guided walk, which lasts up to two hours and is bookable on 360 Discovery Cruises' website.

Tiritiri Matangi Open Sanctuary is accessible by ferry from the Downtown Ferry Terminal. Ferries depart at 9 a.m. and return to the city at 4:40 p.m. Wednesday through Sunday from mid-January to Christmas Eve and daily from December 26 to mid-January. Round-trip ferry tickets for adults cost 75 New Zealand dollars (roughly $54). (Discounted fares are available for children ages 5 to 15.) You can also reach the island by private boat or kayak.

The island itself is free to visit, but guided walks cost NZ$10 (about $7) per adult and NZ$2.50 (less than $2) for each child. Another option is to explore the property on your own; free map and track information can be found online. For additional time on shore, arrange to stay overnight in the island's bunkhouse. Bunkhouse space fills up quickly, so plan on booking overnight stays via the Department of Conservation website several months in advance. A lighthouse and visitor center with a gift shop are available as well, but remember to pack meals and snacks if you want to eat on-site. Check out Tiritiri Matangi Open Sanctuary's website to learn more.

See all Hotels in Auckland »

More Best Things To Do in Auckland

Rangitoto Island1 of 17
Cornwall Park2 of 17
Type
Time to Spend
#1 Rangitoto Island

Situated just off the coast of central Auckland across from Devonport is Rangitoto Island, a volcanic island known for its superb hiking trails and panoramic views. Multiple trails are available for island exploration, including the popular Summit Track, which takes hikers through lava fields and the world's largest pohutukawa forest to the island's summit.

Prepare for stunning vistas and a steep, yet doable hike when visiting Rangitoto Island. If you're not keen on hiking, travelers recommend opting for Fullers' Volcanic Explorer Tour, which includes round-trip ferry transfers to and from downtown Auckland and a four-wheel drive road train tour of the island.

Read more
AnastasiaRas/iStock / Getty Images
See full list of Best Things To Do in Auckland »

Explore More of Auckland

If you make a purchase from our site, we may earn a commission. This does not affect the quality or independence of our editorial content.

Recommended

What Will Happen to My Elite Status and Points Because of the Coronavirus?

Limited travel due to the coronavirus prompts airline and hotel rewards programs to make policy changes.

14 Top Jigsaw Puzzles, Games and Books to Keep Travelers Entertained

Even though you're stuck at home, you can still indulge your wanderlust with these activities.

15 Top Cookbooks to Buy

Travel to far-flung destinations and enjoy international food without leaving home.

The 12 Best Language-Learning Apps, Programs and Online Courses

Now is the perfect time to learn a new skill.

The 13 Best Sedona Tours

Get lost in the magic of Sedona's red rocks on these top adventures.

What is an Ecolodge? 21 Top Eco Resorts and Eco Hotels Around the World

Luxury meets environmental welfare at these top-notch ecolodges.

The 12 Best Puerto Rico Tours

Experience island living at its best on one of these guided trips.

I Went On a Cruise During the Coronavirus Pandemic. This Is What Happened.

Coronavirus concerns, itinerary changes and uncertainty lead to an unusual vacation.

5 Travel-Themed Activities to Do at Home During the Coronavirus Outbreak

Use these suggestions to fill the travel void amid the pandemic.

Cancel For Any Reason Travel Insurance: What You Need to Know

If you are rescheduling a vacation or booking a future trip, consider purchasing an insurance policy with the CFAR benefit.