Tutukaka/Poor Knights Travel GuideEdit This The best resource for sights, hotels, restaurants, bars, what to do and see
Tutukaka is a sleepy little hamlet about 90km from Auckland (2-2.5 hours), on the NE Coast of the North Island. It has a couple of hotels and B&Bs, and a couple of bars. It is about 30 minutes from Whangarei, which is the main city in the region.
It is reknowned as the starting point for dives that go to the Poor Knights Islands, about 15km from town. The Poor Knights were named by Jacques Cousteau as one of his 10 favorite dive spots.
The islands themselves are a nature reserve, and no one is allowed on them, except for scientists with government permission. Creatures live on the islands that have become extinct on the main islands.
The diving is quite nice, clear water, about 70-72F, and the views of the islands are definitely worthy of picture-taking.
If you are looking for coral and bright & brilliant colors, go to the Barrier Reef or Cozumel. Here, you have brilliantly clear water chock-full of Morays, Scorpionfish, Sand Sharks, little bottle-shaped jellyfish, and Rays, and lots of Kelp forests (but not as extreme as off the coast of California).
This is a good getaway from the hustle & bustle of Auckland, with some breathtaking vistas along the way.