World Reviewer rating

Worth a visit
Rating 0.8 (208 votes)

East Cape Road

Listed under Road Trips in North Island, New Zealand.

  • Photo of East Cape Road
  • Photo of East Cape Road
  • Photo of East Cape Road
  • Photo of East Cape Road
  • Photo of East Cape Road
  • Photo of East Cape Road
  • Photo of East Cape Road
  • Photo of East Cape Road
Photo of East Cape Road
Photo by flickr user Tatters:)
Pin It

Mount Hikurangi, rising out of New Zealand’s remote east cape is famous for being the first place sunlight reaches each day. This beautiful region is blessed with stunning natural features but despite being the site of the first European landings it has remained quite isolated from the rest of the North Island.

The East Cape Road takes you from Opotiki to Gisborne through Hicks Bay and along the coastline, it’s a 330km drive so you can do it in a day if you need to or you can enjoy yourself stopping off to admire the beautiful beaches, stretches of coastline and rugged green interior.

The view along this spectacular piece of coastline doesn’t change that much with the seasons but if you travel the road around Christmas your route will be lined with bright red flowering pohutukawa. The largest pohutukawa, which has an impressive 22 trunks and a girth of around 20metres stands at Te Araroa, on the way to the East Cape Lighthouse, New Zealand’s most eastern point. Virgin forests, farms with sheep, deer and sometimes even ostriches and the occasional bubbling of natural gas will make up the rest of your view.

Gisborne is the most eastern city, it isn’t much visited but it’s supposed to be sunny with good nearby beaches and vineyards (Chardonnay.). Up here the Maori culture has retained a tighter hold over daily life. Around half of the rural population are Maori, compared to around 15% in new Zealand as a whole. If you’re a film fan you may recognise this country from “Whale Rider”.

Written by  World Reviewer Staff.

Comments, reviews and questions by other travellers

Not sure the photo is the east cape of NZ...looks more like

cape town in south africa or something like that...i could be wrong

but I've driven the east cape road(I'm nzer) and the hills don

look like 10 cents

Post a comment, review or question

I want to
My comment - optional
Rating - how would you rate this place or experience?

Who's been here

No travelers have told us they have been here. Have you?

Similar Experiences

  • The Alaskan Highway

    For beauty, stillness and serenity, the Alaskan Highway claims priority. With little to distract your attention, this drive fro…

  • Drive New Zealand's South Island

    From majestic glacial peaks of the Southern Alps to rainforest wildlife, turquoise sea and soothing waterfalls, New Zealand’s S…

  • Garden Route: Slang River to Tsitsikamma

    With several forest and marine reserves, and offering snorkelling, scuba diving, boat trips to see dolphins, whales and sharks,…

Nearby Experiences

  • Eastwoodhill Arboretum

    One of the most magical places in the country, hardly a garden by normal standards, this astounding collection -- the best in N…

  • Dive the wreck of the Rainbow Warrior

    Famous for its topside activities, Greenpeace’s flagship ship, the Rainbow Warrior, was a portable soap box for environmental p…

  • Hawkes Bay Ballooning

    This wine region will lay out below you like a great, neat, green carpet all the way from the mountains to the ocean. This gre…

Related links

Contribute to this page