Enjoying the view from Kawau Island

Image: Christine Cumiskey | DOC


Visit Kawau Island, former home to Sir George Grey, who developed the stately Mansion House and its exotic gardens. The house, gardens and tracks on the reserve are open to the public.


Visit Mansion House and its gardens, and explore remnants of the historic mining sites.

No dogs allowed on Bay of Islands and Hauraki Gulf island reserves

No dogs.

Dogs are not allowed on island reserves in the Bay of Islands and Hauraki Gulf.

Place overview


  • Picnic tables


  • Picnicking
  • Swimming
  • Walking and tramping

In this section

Find things to do and places to stay Kawau Island Historic Reserve

About this place

Getting there

The island is easily accessed by private boats, with a choice of safe anchorages in and close to Mansion House Bay.

Water taxis and ferries travel to Kawau Island daily from Sandspit Wharf near Warkworth, about one and a half hour's drive north of Auckland.

Know before you go

Hauraki Gulf Maritime Park bylaws apply. Do not light fires, or remove/disturb plants and artefacts. No bicycles or pets. Take your rubbish with you – there are no rubbish bins.

Some activities require a permit, such as weddings and events.

Visiting Mansion House

Mansion House exterior.
Mansion House

Opening hours

  • Monday to Friday 12:00 noon to 2:00 pm
  • Saturday, Sunday and public holidays 12:00 noon to 3:30 pm
  • Closed Christmas Day, and in winter from June until end of August.

During winter the house may be opened by prior arrangement, for groups of 10 or more.

Group booking

Contact the ranger at least 7 days before you plan to visit:

Email: kawauisland@doc.govt.nz
Phone: +64 9 422 8882

You can also make group bookings online.

Fees for visiting Mansion House

  • Adults $4
  • Children (5–15 years) $2
  • Under 5 free

Children must be accompanied by an adult. Note that there are no eftpos or credit card facilities at Mansion House.


The Mansion House Cafe is open daily during holiday periods and weekends between December and June. Check opening times by calling the cafe: phone +64 9 422 8903, or Mansion House: phone +64 9 422 8882.


Picnic on the reserve, or at the outdoor tables in Mansion House Valley and strategic points in the reserve.


Tāmaki Makaurau / Auckland Office
Phone:   +64 9 307 9279
Fax:   +64 4 471 1117
Email:   auckland@doc.govt.nz
Address:   Bledisloe House
Level 7
24 Wellesley Street West
Auckland 1010
Postal Address:   Private Bag 68908
Wellesley Street
Auckland 1141
Tāmaki Makaurau / Auckland Visitor Centre
Phone:   +64 9 379 6476
Fax:   +64 4 471 1117
Email:   aucklandvc@doc.govt.nz
Address:   Shop2, Shed 19, Princes Wharf
137 Princes Wharf
Auckland 1010
Postal Address:   PO Box 105 469
Auckland City 1143
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