Leigh & Goat Island Marine Reserve

Leigh is a small commercial fishing town with nice views over the harbour and out to Little Barrier Island. Diving and fishing activities can be arranged here, but the main attraction for travellers is the magnificent Goat Island Marine Reserve a few kilometres away. This is New Zealand’s first marine reserve, established in 1975 and protecting 547 hectares of sea and shoreline. Consequently, it is teeming with aquatic life and makes one of the best diving and snorkelling sites in New Zealand; it’s certainly the best this close to Auckland. There are a number of different marine habitats home to a variety of marine life. And if you don’t feel like getting wet, a glass bottom boat ride is available.

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