At the very tip of the 90 mile beach, the tip Northland and tip of New Zealand, perched on the uttermost edge of civilisation we find, in all of it glory, Cape Reinga. This is a surreal place to visit. As you stand on the very edge and look up you’ll see the Tasman Sea colliding with the Pacific Ocean with an array of swirls and different shades of blue.
At the northernmost tip of the Cape you’ll see a Pohutukawa tree in solitude. This tree has been there for some 800 years and is legend to Maori history. It is believed that the sprits of deceased Maori leap from this tree into the ocean to return to their ancestral land of Hawaiki.
The famous lighthouse marks the beginning of New Zealand’s mainland for incoming vessels. In the ground next to the light house is a sign post that indicates how far away you are from the likes of Hong Kong, London and LA.
Cape Reinga is a long way from anything, 100kms from the nearest town to give you a good idea. With this in mind, take food and water for the day. You won’t need any more than that as there is nowhere to stay overnight that far north. You’ll need to base your trip out of Kaitaia, the nearest town.
If you don’t have your own transport, here are your options. You can go on one of two busses, the Backpacker bus or Naked bus both of which depart from Pahia and both will cost you $125 or $145 NZD respectively. If you want to do it on the cheap we’d suggest hitch hiking. This far north, people are pretty good with helping each other out. Rural areas like this in New Zealand have great communities and helpful, resourceful people. Stick a thumb up and you’ll be sure to get a ride to the light house for free.