Gisborne

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$168.75
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Available now Limited availability on request Sold out
Deluxe Studio

Deluxe Studio

Remote control TV and DVD player • Sky TV channels • Stereo system with CD player • STD & ISD telephone • Voicemail • Broadband internet access • Individually controlled air-conditioning • Mini Bar • Hairdryer and toiletries • Iron and Ironing Board
   

 Check availabilty of Gisborne apartments. Reset your dates in the red box.

  • Portside Hotel Apartments 

    2 Reads Quay, Gisborne. Studio, 1 and 2 bedroom apartments in a inner harbour location just minutes from the town centre. Book now!

    Portside harbour

Sightseeing
  • “Whale Rider" movie tour, 2 hours from Whangara (30km north of Gisborne) or 3 hours from Gisborne

  • Take a cruise on MV Takitimu, 1921 restored cruiser, 2 hours

  • Bushwalk and soak at Morere Hot Springs, 3 hours

  • Go reefwalking with Dive Tatapouri and feed the wild stingrays, 3 hours

  • Learn to surf in what is arguably one of the best spots in the country, 2 hours

     

Drive Times
 

Gisborne – Rotorua, 4.5 hours
Gisborne – Napier, 3.5 hours
Gisborne - Whakatane, 3.5 hours
Tip: The route from Rotorua to Gisborne via the Urewera National Park on SH38 is very windy but spectacular.

Population: 42,000

The first to see the light of the new day, Gisborne was a centre for world attention on 1 January 2000 when favourite daughter of the city, opera singer, Kiri te Kanawa, returned to her home town to sing in the dawn of a new century.  The district has New Zealand’s highest proportion of people of Maori descent and is one of the few places where Maori is commonly spoken as an everyday language.  There are more than 100 marae (meeting area of a hapu, sub-tribe or family group, including a meeting house) in the district.  One of the attractions of this area is that it is off the beaten track and therefore offers a very authentic New Zealand experience.


History and Culture

The first people to settle in this district came as part of the Maori migration from Eastern Polynesia about 700 years ago.  Maori social organisation was based on canoe connections and the people were tribal in nature and protective of their people and territory.  Pilgrim fleet leaders Paoa and Kiwa of the Horouta canoe made the region the seat of New Zealand history.  The predominant tribal groupings in the district are Ngati Porou to the north ranging through to Aitanga A Mahaki, Rongowhakaata, Nga Ariki and Ngai Tamanuhiri to the southern part of the district.  Maori people of the district continue to adhere to their historical values and sense of origin, including the Maori language.  Many of the traditional concepts of social solidarity and well-being are integrated in contemporary educational, recreational and economic pursuits.  The district has been the cradle for producing Maori leaders in many fields including education, politics, opera, sports and land management practices.

It was on 9 October 1769 that Captain Cook made the first European landfall at Waikanae Beach.  His far sighted cabin boy Nicholas Young had spotted the striking white headland protecting the southern opening of Poverty Bay which Cook subsequently named Young Nick’s Head.  There are statues commemorating the two at the mouth of the Turanganui River, near the beach.  European development of the region was slow due to the distance involved in moving goods.  Roads were very basic and not well maintained, so the sea became the main means of transport.  This saw four ports created over 160km of coastline – Hick’s Bay, Port Awanui, Tokomaru Bay and Tolaga Bay.  Ultimately Tolaga Bay won out and a 600 m wharf was built which could service coastal shipping no matter the tide.  Roading improvements and the advent of large trucks to carry goods later saw the demise of the wharf as a commercial concern and it has now fallen into disrepair.  This testament to early engineering is slowly being restored by local enthusiasts today and offers an excellent fishing spot for locals and holiday makers.

“Whale Rider” the movie of the book written by Whangara born writer Witi Ihimaera, has its home here just 30km north of the city of Gisborne.  It reworks the legend of Ihimaera’s people, which tells how their ancestor, Paikea, arrived at the East Coast on the back of a mighty whale.  Ihimaera was inspired to write his book during his years in New York, when he lived in an apartment overlooking the Hudson River.  The sight of a whale spouting on the river in 1985 reminded Ihimaera of his people's legend, and led to his story about young Paikea and her grandfather, Koro.  Koro is seeking a male heir to succeed him as a leader for the people at Whangara, and young Paikea is determined to prove herself worthy.  To do so, she must embark on a demanding spiritual journey to win her grandfather's understanding and acceptance.  Film Director Niki Caro appropriately decided  to make the film in the small beachside community of Whangara which has now become famous on the movie map.  Whangara retains a strong Maori character and heritage.  It belongs to the ancestral lands of the Ngati Porou tribe, although Whangara's hapu (sub-tribe) is the Ngati Konohi.  Visitors who are interested in seeing where the movie was made can take a three-hour guided tour to Whangara from the Gisborne Information Centre.  It visits the house where much of the filming took place, and also provides a chance to talk with one of the cultural advisors to the film.


 
 Gisborne City and the inner harbour.

For more information about Gisborne and the region, click through to our Discover New Zealand Hawkes Bay Region

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