Fly into this endearing part of New Zealand, a series of towns on the nation’s eastern coastline. Here you can stay in Napier or Hastings and explore the lovely settlements of Hawke’s Bay, or use one of these towns as a convenient hub for trips out to the central North Island, such as to the idyllic region of Rotorua, or the Great Lake Taupo.
Hawke’s Bay Airport (NPE)
Situated in the North Island of New Zealand Hawke’s Bay Airport services the city of Napier, but can also suit those looking to travel and explore Hawke’s Bay on the eastern coast of this island. It operates domestic flights to other major hubs in New Zealand, such as Auckland (AKL), Wellington (WLG) and Christchurch (CHC). The terminal building is modern, and has the basic amenities passengers need whilst transiting, such as a café and bathroom facilities.
Airlines to Napier-Hastings
The Napier-Hastings Hawke’s Bay Airport is a domestic airport that services internal flights around New Zealand. The major airline carriers that operate out of NPE are Air New Zealand and Jetstar. You can also arrange charter services with Air Napier and Skyline Aviation.
If you are flying outside of New Zealand, then you will have to change flights in a larger international hub, such as Christchurch (CHC), Wellington (WLG) or Auckland (AKL).
Getting into Napier and Hastings
There are a few taxi companies that operate just outside the airport for incoming flights. A journey from the airport into the centre of Napier should only take around 10 minutes and cost about 20-30NZD ($18-28). For Hastings expect the car journey to be 20 minutes in duration and 60-70NZD ($60-65) in price.
You can also travel via shuttle services, which will take you door to door, and they will cost around 20-30NZD ($18-28) for 2-4 people.
Hiring a car is one of the most popular ways to go about travelling in New Zealand because it gives visitors the flexibility of travel to all the natural attractions. The rental companies that operate out of NPE are Avis, Budget, Hertz, Europcar, Thrifty and Rent-a-Dent.
What can you do in Hawke’s Bay?
Hawke’s Bay makes up an area of several interconnected towns; Napier, Hastings, Hawelock North, Central Hawke’s Bay and Wairoa.
In Napier you can explore the Art Deco architecture that was the result of a huge earthquake that warranted the rebuilding of Napier in the 1930s, allowing it to become New Zealand’s Art Deco Capital. If you visit in the summer, you might get a chance to join in on the fun Tremains Art Deco Festival.
Hastings is a little further inland, and this town boasts a lot of restaurants, cafes and bars along with its Hastings Night Market that sells the wares of local artisans and craftspeople. It also provides easy access to the small seaside settlements of Haumoana and Te Awanga that offer stunning views out to sea, and decent surfing for those that like to hit the waves.
North of Napier and Hastings you will find Wairoa, a gateway town to Lake Waikaremoana, the Mahia Peninsula and the nearby National Park, Te Urewera. If you’re looking to embrace the outdoors, this is the place to do it.
For watersports expect to find places to fish, surf, dive, water ski and boat along the river, the lake or even in Hawke’s Bay itself. Otherwise, keen hikers, kayakers and campers should make for Te Urewara National Park, one of New Zealand’s most beautiful.
When should you go?
The weather in Hawke’s Bay is often likened to a Mediterranean climate, with summers (December-February) sitting between 20-30°C and winters never dipping below 10°C. If you like the heat, but not the crowds, autumn is a good bet, as the weather still pushes the 20°C mark.
What do you need to know?
Currency: New Zealand Dollar (NZD)
Visa: You’ll find that some nationalities do not need a visa to fly to New Zealand, but many will need to apply in advance. The best way to check, is to head to the official government website for details on your nationality’s requirements for travel to this country.
Please note all information is current as of February 2016.
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