Napier, Nugent, Meyer, Dayrell and Chanter islands seen from Raoul Island.
Image: Danica Stent | ©
Located in the Northland region
In 2015, the New Zealand Government created a new ocean sanctuary in the Kermadec region of the South Pacific Ocean.
At 620,000 sq km, the Kermadec Ocean Sanctuary is one of New Zealand's largest and most significant fully protected areas.
Kermadec Marine Reserve map with WSG84 lat/long coordinates boundaries | View larger (PDF, 512K)
The Kermadec Islands are the visible surface of a chain of about 80 volcanoes, stretching for 2,600 km between Tonga and New Zealand.
Raoul Island is the biggest of the group, which begins at the southernmost L’Esperance. While the other islands and islets are smaller, several of them harbour important bird colonies.
The marine reserve was created in 1990 and is one of New Zealand’s largest marine reserves, covering 745,000 ha. It supports New Zealand’s only truly subtropical marine systems, and historically low levels of fishing have left this environment largely undisturbed and abundant.
The Pacific and Australasian tectonic plates collide along the Kermadec Trench, lifting and buckling the Australasian plate and sinking the Pacific plate. The volcanic chain is formed by the Pacific plate melting as it sinks beneath the Australasian plate.
Use the WSG84 coordinates (map provided) to ensure you do not fish within the boundaries of the Kermadec Marine Reserve.
The Kermadec Islands are 1,000 km northeast of New Zealand. The islands are remote and can only be accessed by private boat or charter vessel.
The islands of the Kermadec Group are all of international conservation significance. All the islands in the Kermadec group are extremely fragile, and cannot withstand even low numbers of visitors.
A permit is required to visit the land. This is only available to people who propose to undertake work to assist in the management or understanding of the islands' ecosystems.
The waters around all the islands and rocks, out to the edge of the Territorial Sea (12 nautical miles) are a marine reserve. All marine life in this area is protected.
For more information on the requirements for land and marine access see visiting the Kermadec Islands with a permit.