Find out about and visit New Zealand's marine reserves.
The Kermadec Islands Nature Reserve and Marine Reserve, located some 1000km northeast of New Zealand, is the most remost area managed by the Department of Conservation and can only be visited with a special permit.
The Auckland Islands/Motu Maha Marine Reserve covers about 484 000 hectares in the Southern Ocean, providing breeding grounds for Southern right whales, NZ sea lions and yellow-eyed penguins.
The marine environment in the Whangarei Harbour is of distinctive quality, and two marine areas are set aside for protection around Motukaroro (Passage) Island and at Waikaraka.
The Motu Manawa Marine Reserve protects 500 hectares of the inner reaches of Auckland's Waitemata Harbour.
Beneath the waves at the Poor Knights, the caves, arches, tunnels and sheer cliffs provide a great variety of habitats to explore.
New Zealand's first marine reserve, Cape Rodney-Okakari Point was established in 1975. It is also known as Goat Island or Leigh marine reserve.
Just 20 km north of Auckland lies the Long Bay-Okura Marine Reserve. The reserve protects a variety of coastal habitats: sandy beaches, rocky reefs, estuarine mudflats and mangroves.
The 690-hectare Te Matuku Marine Reserve protects one of Waiheke Island's largest and least disturbed estuaries, along with an area outside Te Matuku Bay in the Waiheke Channel.
Te Whanganui-A-Hei/Cathedral Cove Marine Reserve protects the marine habitats around Motueka, Mahurangi, Motukorure, Moturoa islands.
Located offshore north of Tauranga, Tuhua (Mayor Island) Marine Reserve covers about three square nautical miles and five kilometres of coastline from Tumutu Point east to Turanganui Point.
The 1800ha Parininihi Marine Reserve is a “classic” section of the wild Taranaki coastline. Pariokariwa Reef, in the reserve area, has been rated as one of the top sponge spots in the world.
The 1404ha Tapuae Marine Reserve is on the rugged Taranaki coast close to New Plymouth and adjoins the Sugar Loaf Island Marine Protected Area. It hosts a diverse and flourishing range of sea life.
The underwater scenery, exceptionally clear waters, and rich animal and plant life attract many visitors to Kapiti Marine Reserve.
The 854ha Taputeranga Marine Reserve is located 6 kilometres from the city centre on Wellington's south coast, providing easy access to study, interact with and record marine life and habitats.
Te Tapuwae o Rongokako Marine Reserve lies about 16 kilometres north of Gisborne. The reserve contains eight marine habitat types including inshore reef, rocky intertidal platforms, sediment flats and more.
Te Angiangi Marine Reserve protects a piece of the central Hawke's Bay coast.
The Te Paepae o Aotea (Volkner Rocks) Marine Reserve is a unique volcanic and oceanic environment in the Eastern Bay of Plenty.
Find out about recreation opportunities in Tonga Island Marine Reserve in Abel Tasman National Park.
Learn what awaits visitors to Westhaven, the first estuary in New Zealand to be protected by a combination of marine and wildlife reserve.
Horoirangi Marine Reserve lies north of Nelson city along the eastern side of Tasman Bay. Learn about the recreation options the reserve offers.
Accessible only by boat, Long Island - Kokomohua Marine Reserve offers visitors the chance to explore an environment typical of the Marlborough Sounds.
At Pōhatu Marine Reserve, picnicking, swimming, boating, diving and photography are encouraged, as are educational and scientific activities, providing the reserve's plants and wildlife are not disturbed.
By adjoining the Ulva Island Open Sanctuary, the 1075-hectare Ulva Island/Te Wharawhara Marine Reserve extends the protection of this area from land to sea.
Fiordland’s ten marine reserves range in size from 93 to 3,672 hectares, and in total include over 10,000 hectares of inner fiord marine habitat. The reserves border the Fiordland National Park and are a fantastic example of protected natural environments.
The Tāwharanui Marine Reserve, a 400 hectare marine reserve adjacent to the Tawharanui Regional Park, was established in September 2011.
Phone 0800 DOC HOTline (0800 362 468) 24 hour emergency number to report:
Sick or injured wildlifeWhale or dolphin strandings