This list of all New Zealand marine reserves takes you though to marine reserve information in the parks and recreation section. View a map.
Akaroa is visited by many marine mammals including the world’s smallest dolphin, the Hector’s dolphin. The Akaroa Marine Reserve lies at the mouth of the harbour and is easy to visit as the township offers numerous water-based tourist activities.
Antipodes Island is the most remote of New Zealand’s subantarctic islands, 870 km southeast of the South Island.
The Auckland Islands - Motu Maha Marine Reserve covers an area of about 484,000 ha in the Southern Ocean, providing breeding grounds for Southern right whales, New Zealand sea lions and yellow-eyed penguins.
At first view, these bleak subantarctic rocks appear anything but bountiful, but they are some of the most densely populated rocks in the Southern Ocean, and they are also teeming with underwater life.
Campbell Island/Moutere Ihupuku is the eroded remains of a shield volcano, characterised by large cliffs, boulder beaches and a few sandy bays. It lies 660 km south of the South Island, and it is New Zealand’s southern most island.
New Zealand's first marine reserve, Cape Rodney-Okakari Point was established in 1975. It is also known as Goat Island or Leigh marine reserve.
Fiordland’s ten marine reserves range in size from 93 to 3,672 hectares, and in total include over 10,000 hectares of inner fiord marine habitat. The reserves border the Fiordland National Park and are a fantastic example of protected natural environments.
Horoirangi Marine Reserve lies north of Nelson city along the eastern side of Tasman Bay. Learn about the recreation options the reserve offers.
Kapiti Marine Reserve links the world-renowned bird sanctuary on the island with the protected Waikanae estuary on the mainland, creating a rare continuum of protected land and sea.
The Kermadec Islands Nature Reserve and Marine Reserve, located some 1000 km northeast of New Zealand, is the most remost area managed by the Department of Conservation and can only be visited with a special permit.
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.
Accessible only by boat, Long Island - Kokomohua Marine Reserve offers visitors the chance to explore an environment typical of the Marlborough Sounds.
The Motu Manawa - Pollen Island Marine Reserve protects 500 hectares of the inner reaches of Auckland's Waitemata Harbour.
This 1800 ha marine reserve encloses a typical slice of the north Taranaki coastline, as well as the possibly unique sponge gardens of Pariokariwa reef.
You will see many of New Zealand’s most charismatic marine animals at Pōhatu Marine Reserve, which hosts both penguin and seal colonies. The drive to Pōhatu is rough and should only be attempted by 4WD.
Beneath the waves at the Poor Knights, the caves, arches, tunnels and sheer cliffs provide a great variety of habitats to explore.
The 1404ha Tapuae Marine Reserve is on the rugged Taranaki coast close to New Plymouth and adjoins the Sugar Loaf Island Marine Protected Area. It hosts a diverse and flourishing range of sea life.
The 854ha Taputeranga Marine Reserve is located 6 kilometres from the city centre on Wellington's south coast, providing easy access to study, interact with and record marine life and habitats.
Tāwharanui Marine Reserve is good for families, with pōhutukawa lined beaches, good swimming and rockpooling. It runs along the northern side of Tāwharanui Regional Park (on Takatu Peninsula) and is a 90 minute drive north of Auckland. There is camping nearby.
Te Angiangi Marine Reserve protects a piece of the central Hawke's Bay coast.
Te Matuku Marine Reserve protects one of Waiheke Island's largest and least disturbed estuaries, along with an area outside Te Matuku Bay in the Waiheke Channel.
The Te Paepae o Aotea (Volkner Rocks) Marine Reserve is a unique volcanic and oceanic environment in the Eastern Bay of Plenty.
Te Tapuwae o Rongokako Marine Reserve lies about 16 kilometres north of Gisborne. The reserve contains eight marine habitat types including inshore reef, rocky intertidal platforms, sediment flats and more.
Find out about recreation opportunities in Tonga Island Marine Reserve in Abel Tasman National Park.
Tuhua (Mayor Island) is a collapsed volcano on the edge of the continental shelf. The marine reserve surrounding it is a wonderful dive spot, with a mixture of shallow reef and deepwater environments.
By adjoining the Ulva Island Open Sanctuary, the 1075-hectare Ulva Island/Te Wharawhara Marine Reserve extends the protection of this area from land to sea.
Learn what awaits visitors to Westhaven, the first estuary in New Zealand to be protected by a combination of marine and wildlife reserve.
Whanganui A Hei (Cathedral Cove) Marine Reserve protects the marine habitats around Motueka, Mahurangi, Motukorure, Moturoa islands.
The marine environment in the Whangarei Harbour is of distinctive quality, and two marine areas are set aside for protection around Motukaroro (Passage) Island and at Waikaraka.
CITES endangered species
DOC's 24 hour emergency hotline:
0800 DOC HOT (0800 362 468)
Call to report sick or injured wildlife, and whale or dolphin strandings.