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Welcome to Rangitoto Island, Hauraki Gulf, New Zealand

The youngest of the islands in the Hauraki Gulf, Rangitoto emerged from the sea around 700 years ago in a series of volcanic explosions. Rising to a height of 260 metres the circular island presents the same uniform appearance and is visible from most parts of the mainland. Rangitoto's name has been translated to mean the day the blood of Tamatekapua was shed, relating to a major Maori battle at Islington Bay about 1350. Rangitoto is an icon of Auckland city.

Situated about 8 km northeast of Auckland and connected to Motutapu Island by a causeway, Rangitoto is a large island of 2311 hectares with a wonderful volcanic landscape that supports over 200 species of moss, plants and trees including the largest Pohutukawa forest in the world. It was purchased by the Crown in 1854, set aside as a recreation reserve in 1890 and for over 30 years the island's volcanic scoria was quarried and shipped to Auckland. Between 1925 and 1936 prison labour built roads on the island and a track to the summit.

There are some 10 or so short and long walks around the island and from the summit there are magnificent views of the Hauraki Gulf, the Waitemata Harbour and Auckland city.

Rangitoto Islands' unique geological and natural attributes are of international interest. What is less known is that the three Bach Settlements of Rangitoto Wharf, Islington Bay and Beacon End are also of national importance.

The bach communities on Rangitoto Island were built in the 1920's and 30's and consist of private holiday dwellings and boatsheds as well as communal facilities such as paths, swimming pool, community hall and tennis courts. Built by families, using the scarce resources of the Depression era, the buildings demonstrate the 'kiwi' do-it-yourself, jack-of-all-trades attitudes of the times.

As a result of a prohibition order on further buildings in 1937, the remnants of the communities reflect this specific time in Auckland's development and as a result they are part of local history involving typical New Zealanders in a unique environment.

Because other bach communities, which were prevalent throughout the country, have virtually disappeared, the Rangitoto bach settlements are irreplaceable artefacts of New Zealand's architectural, and social history and therefore are important beyond their locality.

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Museum Bach Opening Hours

Bach 38 Museum at Rangitoto Wharf will be open by appointment info@rangitoto.org
Opening times are from the first Fullers ferry of the day to the last ferry of the day.

Open other days by appointment - info@rangitoto.org

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Latest Additions

Education Pages

New content added to the education pages here>>

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Rangitoto Scouts

Photos of the Scout Camps in the 1930s, 1948 and 1951 here>>

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Rangitoto Wrecks

Photos of the wrecks here>>

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Rangitoto Ramblings

The latest newsletter is available here>>

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Gareth Cooke Photos

Gareth has taken a series of photos of the Rangitoto Baches and wrecks view his online gallery here>>

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From the TVNZ Archives

A Summer Place

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Photos of Rangitoto Island submitted by the public on Flickr are here>>

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Rangitoto Island Biosecurity Standards. Find out what you need to know here>>

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The Environmental Care Code and Water Care Code can be found here>>

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New photos have been added to the galleries here>>

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Charitable Trust

The Rangitoto Island Historic Conservation Trust is Charities Commission registered - our number is CC28141 - so all donations over $5 are tax deductible. View certificate here>>
More information on societies and trusts here>>

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AMP

Major financial sponsor
AMP Financial Services Limited

Weather for Rangitoto today
Check out what the weather is doing over the Auckland area.

Tide reports -
Check out the high and low tide
for Auckland area

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Archives

Newsletters
Heritage Notes
Restoration / #38 / #114
Membership / How to join
Submit / Stories & Photos
Bach 38 / Open Day Images

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Key facts about Rangitoto Island

Maori name: Rangitoto, derived from the phrase 'Te Rangi i totongia a Tamatekapua - the day the blood of Tamatekapua was shed'.

Location: Auckland City, map reference NZMS 260: R11/762888

Height: 260 m

Age: Formed about 600 years ago
(ca 1400 AD)

Volume lava: about 2,300 million cubic metres (equivalent to 468,000 Olympic sized swimming pools)

Volume tuff/ash/pyroclastics: about 19 million cubic metres (equivalent to 3,800 Olympic sized swimming pools)

Auckland Heritage Festival 2009.

About the event

Auckland Heritage Festival.

This year's Auckland Heritage Festival is on from 19 September to 4 October 2009.

Auckland Heritage Festival is a celebration of our city's heritage that involves a programme of 150 exciting, diverse and interactive events.

The festival encourages people of all ages to celebrate, embrace and learn about Auckland city's unique natural and cultural heritage. It is part of our long-term campaign to protect Auckland's heritage assets.

The theme of this year's festival is living heritage. Living heritage encompasses both natural and cultural heritage - it's those items, sites and areas we interact with in our daily lives. Heritage isn't frozen in our past - it informs today's and tomorrow's experiences.

There really is no other festival in Auckland that offers such a rich array of events. From volcanoes and islands, to machines, animals and buildings - the stories of Auckland will amaze and astound locals and visitors alike.

Fullers – 25% off fares to Rangitoto Island

Event dates

Saturday, 19 Sep Departs Downtown 9.15am, 12.15pm; departs Devonpor
Sunday, 20 Sep Departs Downtown 9.15am, 12.15pm; departs Devonpor
Monday, 21 Sep Departs Downtown 9.15am, 12.15pm; departs Devonpor
Tuesday, 22 Sep Departs Downtown 9.15am, 12.15pm; departs Devonpor
Wednesday, 23 Sep Departs Downtown 9.15am, 12.15pm; departs Devonpor
Thursday, 24 Sep Departs Downtown 9.15am, 12.15pm; departs Devonpor
Friday, 25 Sep Departs Downtown 9.15am, 12.15pm; departs Devonpor
Saturday, 26 Sep Departs Downtown 9.15am, 12.15pm; departs Devonpor
Sunday, 27 Sep Departs Downtown 9.15am, 12.15pm; departs Devonpor
Monday, 28 Sep Departs Downtown 9.15am, 12.15pm; departs Devonpor
Tuesday, 29 Sep Departs Downtown 9.15am, 12.15pm; departs Devonpor
Wednesday, 30 Sep Departs Downtown 9.15am, 12.15pm; departs Devonpor
Thursday, 1 Oct Departs Downtown 9.15am, 12.15pm; departs Devonpor
Friday, 2 Oct Departs Downtown 9.15am, 12.15pm; departs Devonpor
Saturday, 3 Oct Departs Downtown 9.15am, 12.15pm; departs Devonpor
Sunday, 4 Oct Departs Downtown 9.15am, 12.15pm; departs Devonpor

Event details

Cost: 25% off Reduced fare prices: Adults $18.75, seniors $16.90, children $9.40 
Booking details: Contact event organiser
Meeting place: Downtown Ferry Terminal (Quay St, city centre) and Devonport Wharf (Queens Parade, Devonport) 
Address: Quay Street, City Central CBD 
Contact: Fullers 
Email: enquiries@fullers.co.nz  
Website: www.fullers.co.nz/news-events/whats-on.php 
 

 

Geological Society of New Zealand – Explore Rangitoto Island volcano

Event dates

Sunday, 27 Sep 12.40pm to 3.45pm

Event details

Cost: FREE (ferry additional – see Fullers listing for details) 
Booking details: Contact event organiser
Meeting place: Meet at the information centre near Rangitoto wharf after arriving on the 12.15pm (12.25pm from Devonport) Fullers ferry 
Contact: Hugh Grenfell 
Phone: 09 578 1491 
Email: h.grenfell@geomarine.org.nz 
Website: www.gsnz.org.nz 
 

 

Rangitoto Island – Bach communities tour

Event dates

Wednesday, 30 Sep Tours: 9.45am-noon, 12.45pm-3pm
Saturday, 3 Oct Tours: 9.45am-noon, 12.45pm-3pm
Sunday, 4 Oct Tours: 9.45am-noon, 12.45pm-3pm

Event details

Cost: 25% discount Fullers Gold coin donation appreciated  
Booking details: Contact event organiser
Meeting place: Meet at the Department of Conservation information shelter to the right of Rangitoto Wharf  
Address: Rangitoto, Gulf Islands 
Contact: Susan Yoffe 
Phone: 09 445 1894 
Email: rangitoto@orcon.net.nz 
Website: www.rangitoto.org