Experience three of Napier’s most popular tourist attractions. This tour captivates the essence of Napier from wildlife to history, including architectural highlights.
The National Aquarium of New Zealand houses the country’s largest display of aquatic life and unique New Zealand wildlife, including sharks, stingrays, living coral. The Aquarium has reversed day and night in the Kiwi encounter so you can see Kiwis foraging for bugs and insects.
The historic prison is located on Napier’s Bluff Hill overlooking the Pacific Ocean. View the old quarry where the inmates used to work their hard days’ labour to build the very walls that would keep them imprisoned. The prison was constructed in 1862, making it the oldest penal complex in New Zealand. After the prison closed, a family bought it and turned it into a tourist attraction and it also offers accommodation to travellers. Your guide will recount the prison’s history and then explore the different parts of the prison.
One of Napier’s main attractions are the Art Deco style buildings. The beautifully preserved 1930s architecture is Napier’s special point of difference. A national disaster resulted in Napier becoming one of the purest Art Deco cities in the world. On the morning of February 3rd, 1931 a massive earthquake rocked Hawkes Bay for more than 3 minutes. Nearly 260 lives were lost and the vast majority of buildings in the commercial centre of Napier were destroyed, either by the quake itself or by the fires that followed. New buildings reflected the architectural styles of the time - Stripped Classical, Spanish Mission and Art Deco. The Art Deco Trust, Napiers preservation force, offers a variety of quality activities which educate, promote and celebrate the history of Napier’s destruction and its rebirth in Art Deco style.