Attractions - Hauraki Gulf
Kawau has an interesting history. After centuries of Maori occupation it became the site of one of New Zealand’s earliest mining ventures with manganese and copper mining. Later, from 1862 – 1888, the Governor Sir George Grey made it his home and remodelled the residence of the mine superintendant, now known as the Mansion House. He planted hundreds of plant species and introduced many exotic and native animals. Wallabies have only recently been removed from the island. A Historic Reserve has been created to protect the Mansion House and its gardens, the surrounding landscape and the relics from the Copper Mining industry. You can visit the house, walk around the grounds or over to Coppermine Bay. Native bush and exotic trees cover most of the island with some farming land and holiday homes nestled around the many bays on the sheltered west coast. Mansion House Bay is a very popular anchorage and there are several other bays on both sides of Bon Accord harbour, a 3km long inlet which almost divides the island in two. Other anchorages include Vivian Bay and Coppermine Bay. North Cove is the most sheltered anchorage, but unfortunately is mostly filled with moorings. There are also anchorages on the mainland coast of Kawau Bay: Christian Bay for example is excellent in North Westerly conditions.