Australasian gannet colony at Cape Kidnappers
The Cape Kidnappers Gannet Reserve is managed by the Department of Conservation for the purpose of protecting the gannet nesting sites.
The 13 hectare reserve includes the Saddle and Black Reef gannet colonies. Both are closed to public access, however the Black Reef colony can be viewed from the beach. The Plateau colony is the main place for viewing the nesting gannets where there are also good panoramic views from this elevated headland.
There are spectacular geological cliff formations on the coast to Cape Kidnappers.
View the Cape Kidnappers brochure (PDF, 869K).
Find out about the Australasian gannet (takapu) which has been nesting at Cape Kidnappers since the 1870s and learn about the history and coastal conservation of the area.
Take an enjoyable scenic walk or trip along the remote coastline and get a close up view of nesting gannets. The towering cliffs expose the many rock types and fault lines which underlie Hawke's Bay.
There is no camping or hut accommodation available at the gannet reserve and camping is not permitted. Nearby Napier City has many accommodation options available to visitors.
You must take special care of the reserve. Find out how to get there, what commercial transport services are available, the best time of year to visit and what to take.
The Australasian gannet or takapu has been nesting at Cape Kidnappers in the Hawke’s Bay since the 1870s. Learn about the largest mainland gannet colony on earth.
Researchers are learning more about the takapu or Australasian gannet by tracking their flight patterns to discover where they like to fish.
Find businesses that are DOC-approved to provide activities and services in Cape Kidnappers Gannet Reserve.
Cape Kidnappers map (JPG, 105K)
DOC maps: Discover the outdoors - DOC's key places, campsites, tracks and huts, and visitor centres on a map
Check, Clean, Dry between waterways and stop the spread of didymo.
Follow the Outdoor Safety Code:1. Plan your trip2. Tell someone3. Be aware of the weather4. Know your limits5. Take sufficient supplies
Alerts for Hawke's Bay places