Long Bay/Okura Marine Reserve
Image: Sara Kulins | MERC | ©



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.

For boundaries, tide and other information download the MarineMate app.

Find things to do and places to stay Long Bay-Okura Marine Reserve

Oystercatchers, white-fronted terns and gulls are common at Long Bay. The endangered NZ dotterel nests on sand spits near the Okura Walkway.

If you're lucky, you might spot pods of orca or dolphins which are seen a few times each year.

Post observations of species you see here on iNaturalist.

Boats are allowed within the marine reserve. Take care not to damage marine life by dragging anchors. Maritime Safety Rules apply: the maximum speed for all watercraft is 5 knots within 50 m from any swimmer and within 200 m from the shore.

There is no boat ramp at Long Bay. The nearest boat ramp is down Rock Isle Road, Torbay, about 5 minutes drive south of the marine reserve. There is also a boat ramp at the end of Okura River Road, on the Okura River.

The reefs at either end of Long Bay are the best place to snorkel. Look out for large snapper, rays and many reef fish species amongst the seaweed and rocky ledges.

We recommended visitors swim or dive in pairs. Snorkelers, particularly those who are not strong swimmers or used to swimming in the open sea, are strongly advised to wear a wetsuit or life jacket, or take another flotation device such as a boogie board when snorkelling in the marine reserve. Beginners should keep near the shore.

You can launch your kayak at Long Bay and paddle north to explore Karepiro Bay and the Okura estuary and river. If you paddle south, you can stop off at one of North Shore’s many great beaches such as Browns Bay or Mairangi Bay.

Protect our marine reserves
  • No fishing of any kind.
  • Don't take or kill marine life.
  • Don't remove or disturb any marine life or materials.
  • Don't feed fish - it disturbs their natural behaviour.
  • Take care when anchoring to avoid damaging the sea floor.


Auckland information
Phone:   +64 7 867 9080
Email:   kauaerangavc@doc.govt.nz
About:   Kauaeranga Visitor Centre provides visitor information for this area
Back to top