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Lying in the northern extreme of the North Island of New Zealand is the small town of Paihia. A big draw for its beaches and the surf, Paihia is the ultimate tourist destination in the Bay of Islands. The secluded, pristine golden beaches here get top billing as the best places to picnic. Other in-demand outdoor activities are kayaking, swimming, dolphin sighting and fishing.
If sightseeing interests you, stroll through the busy township of Kerikeri or hop on the bus to see the 2000-year-old Tane Mahuta, the presiding deity of the Waipoua Forest. Explore instances of Maori culture and legend with a trip to Cape Reinga, presumed to be the place where spirits depart. Alternately, board the ferry to ‘Romantic Russell’, visit the Hundertwasser toilets in Kawakawa and spend an hour at the Pioneer Village in Kaikohe. If you just want to soak in the sun and laze around on your holiday, take a relaxing cruise through the 'Hole in the Rock'.