Holidays in Sugar Loaf Marine Reserve

Holiday Travel Guide
Sugar Loaf Marine Reserve showing a bay or harbour, a sunset and island images

Visit the remnants of an extinct volcano and discover a rich diversity of marine life in the reefs and islands off the rugged coast of New Plymouth.

Explore Sugar Loaf Marine Reserve near Port Taranaki, which comprises 1,850 acres (750 hectares) of seabed, water and foreshore and offers recreational opportunities for the whole family. Above the water, a group of sea stacks and seven small islands are the eroded remains of a large volcano that dates back nearly 2 million years. Below the surface, find magnificent canyons, caves, rock faces and boulder fields, as well as a large variety of marine life.

Take a boat tour from one of the charter companies that visit the islands and learn about the history of the area. Local Maori people were living on the islands when European settlers arrived. The reserve owes its name to Captain Cook, who thought that the group of islands resembled the sugar loafs he put in his tea. The sugar he referred to is actually bird guano. A whaling station was established on one of the islands, Moturoa, in the 1820s.

Discover the spectacular underwater scenery of the reserve by renting snorkeling gear or going on a diving expedition. Swim among nearly 100 different species of fish that live in the reefs and look out for a resident breeding colony of New Zealand fur seals. Summer and autumn months are the best to dive, when underwater visibility can reach 65 feet (20 meters).

Rent a kayak or canoe from the town and go out on the water to appreciate the wildlife up close. Alternatively, enjoy a favorite pastime of locals and tourists alike and go fishing in the area. Catch kingfish, blue cod, snapper and many other species. Be aware, however, that this marine reserve borders the northern edge of the Tapuae Marine Reserve, where fishing and the removal of marine life are prohibited.

The Sugar Loaf Marine Reserve is close to New Plymouth and readily accessible by car. The island group is close to Paritutu Rock, which offers magnificent views of the ocean and coastline. Visit the tourist information center in the city center for guide hire and kayak rental details.

234 Cheap Hotels Near Sugar Loaf Marine Reserve

Plymouth International
Plymouth International
4 out of 5
220 Courtenay Street, New Plymouth, Taranaki
The price is AU$95 per night from 2 Dec. to 2 Dec.
Located in New Plymouth CBD, this eco-friendly hotel is 0.4 mi (0.6 km) from East End Reserve and 1.4 mi (2.2 km) from Bowl of Brooklands. Fitzroy Beach and ...
4.4/5 Excellent! (642 reviews)
"Lovely place to stay, nice little gym, pool was really good. So close to everything."

Reviewed on 18 Nov. 2021

Plymouth International
Millennium Hotel New Plymouth, Waterfront
Millennium Hotel New Plymouth, Waterfront
4 out of 5
1 Egmont Street, New Plymouth, Taranaki
Fully refundableReserve now, pay when you stay
The price is AU$171 per night from 5 Dec. to 5 Dec.
Offering direct access to the beach, this New Plymouth CBD hotel is in the city centre, steps away from Puke Ariki and Wind Wand. Observatory and Pukekura Park ...
4.6/5 Exceptional! (651 reviews)
"everything was fine except food, their was nothing fir vegetarians. These days people are more conscious about their health and prefer vegetables but could not find decent vegetarian meal apart from paster"

Reviewed on 30 Nov. 2021

Millennium Hotel New Plymouth, Waterfront
Tivoli Homestay
Tivoli Homestay
3 out of 5
22 SCOTT STREET, Moturoa, New Plymouth, Taranaki
The price is AU$329 per night from 2 Dec. to 2 Dec.
Located in Moturoa, this bed & breakfast is within 1 mile (2 km) of Paritutu Rock, Back Beach and Sugar Loaf Marine Reserve. Taranaki Base Hospital and Puke ...
5/5 Exceptional! (7 reviews)
It was perfect!
"It was an amazing experience. Perfect!"

Reviewed on 16 Jan. 2019

Tivoli Homestay
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.

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Top Sugar Loaf Marine Reserve Hotel & Accommodation Deals

Plymouth International
Plymouth International
4 out of 5
220 Courtenay Street, New Plymouth, Taranaki
The price is AU$95 per night from 2 Dec. to 2 Dec.
Plymouth International
Millennium Hotel New Plymouth, Waterfront
Millennium Hotel New Plymouth, Waterfront
4 out of 5
1 Egmont Street, New Plymouth, Taranaki
The price is AU$171 per night from 5 Dec. to 5 Dec.
Millennium Hotel New Plymouth, Waterfront
Tivoli Homestay
Tivoli Homestay
3 out of 5
22 SCOTT STREET, Moturoa, New Plymouth, Taranaki
The price is AU$329 per night from 2 Dec. to 2 Dec.
Tivoli Homestay
Modern Studio, close to Beach and Port
Modern Studio, close to Beach and Port
42A Whiteley St, New Plymouth, Taranaki
Modern Studio, close to Beach and Port
THE WATERFRONT ESCAPE
THE WATERFRONT ESCAPE
8 Roy Terrace, New Plymouth, Taranaki
THE WATERFRONT ESCAPE
The Metrotel Motel
The Metrotel Motel
3 out of 5
22 Gill Street, New Plymouth
The price is AU$134 per night from 2 Dec. to 2 Dec.
The Metrotel Motel
Belt Road Seaside Holiday Park
Belt Road Seaside Holiday Park
4.5 out of 5
2 Belt Road, New Plymouth
The price is AU$135 per night from 2 Dec. to 2 Dec.
Belt Road Seaside Holiday Park
16 Havelock
16 Havelock
4 out of 5
16 Havelock Place, Blagdon, New Plymouth
The price is AU$116 per night from 3 Dec. to 3 Dec.
16 Havelock
299 on Devon West
299 on Devon West
4.5 out of 5
299 Devon Street West, New Plymouth, Taranaki
The price is AU$134 per night from 2 Dec. to 2 Dec.
299 on Devon West
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.