Things to Do in Gisborne for Couples
Experience effortless romance alongside the beaches, rivers and vineyards of Gisborne. The laidback vibe that the small city is known for combined with a soothing warm dry climate makes for a wonderful romantic retreat. Whether you’re into foodie experiences, active adventures or pure relaxation, there are romantic activities in Gisborne for couples as unique as you. Discover what to do on your honeymoon, romantic getaway or next date night with this list of things to do in Gisborne for couples.
And for more advice on planning your retreat, take a look at The Honeymoon Guide to Gisborne.
1. Watch the First Sunrise Together
Thanks to its position on the International Date Line, Gisborne is the first city in the world to see the new day. With that, the eastern position of the city makes for some stellar sunrises! One of the best beaches to watch the sunrise from is Wainui Beach, awash in picturesque sand dunes and quiet spots to enjoy the natural marvel together. Alternatively, drive or walk to the top of Kaiti Hill overlooking Gisborne and Poverty Bay. Better yet, a favourite spot is the East Cape Lighthouse all the way up north, but that’s best saved for an East Cape road trip.
Location: Wainui Beach – Access off Wairere Road, approximately 7km (4 miles) from Gisborne city centre. Kaiti Hill – Kaiti Beach Road, approximately 2km (1.2 miles) from Gisborne city centre.
2. Take a Romantic Road Trip to the Coastal Haven of the Mahia Peninsula
Gisborne is surrounded by worthy road trips that make for the perfect day out for couples. For instance, enjoy a romantic trip to the Mahia Peninsula. The golden sands, quaint villages and coastal walks effortlessly set the scene for romance, so check out the 11 Mahia Peninsula Must-Dos and plan your road trip. On your way in or out, don’t miss the Morere Hot Springs nestled in nikau palm forest.
Location: Mahia, approximately 82km (51 miles) from Gisborne city centre.
3. Learn How to Surf Together
Strengthen your bond by learning something new together, like surfing! Gisborne is a surfer’s paradise, where experienced wave riders flock to Wainui Beach while newbies can learn on the safe sandy-bottom waves of Gisborne’s city beach, Waikanae Beach. Couples have plenty of options when it comes to choosing a surf coach in Gisborne, including Surfing with Sarah, Salt Shack Surf School, Gisborne Surf School and Blitz Surf Shop.
Location: Waikanae Beach, Gisborne city.
4. Hit the Coastal Railway on a Tandem Railbike Adventure
Enjoy a unique, memorable and romantic adventure with railbiking! That’s right, The Gisborne Railbike Adventure has made special tandem cycles that allows couples to peddle side-by-side on a stunning coastal railway between Gisborne and Mahia. There is 90km (56 miles) of railway to explore, which are broken up into three different ride options incorporating bushclad valleys, tunnels, farmland and expansive ocean views. Pack a picnic and enjoy the ride!
Location: Awapuni Road, approximately 5km (3 miles) from Gisborne city centre.
5. Visit the Romantic Rere Waterfall and Eastwoodhill Arboretum
Another unmissable road trip for couples is that to the Rere Waterfall and Eastwoodhill Arboretum. First, connect with nature and each other at the tree haven of Eastwoodhill made up of hundreds of acres of exotic and native trees harbouring all kinds of birds. Take a picnic and find a quiet spot along the walking trails for a romantic outing. When you’re done don’t miss the Rere Waterfall just a little further up the road with its picture-perfect blanket of water cascading off the cliff.
Location: 2392 Wharekopae Road, Ngatapa, approximately 34km (21 miles) from Gisborne city centre.
6. Snuggle Up in a Beanbag with a Movie at the Dome Cinema
With mood lighting, beanbags-for-two and pizza and wine delivered to your seat, the Dome Cinema easily makes the most romantic cinema in New Zealand. Watch classic and new releases in arthouse cinema in this classic-yet-premium way to do date night in Gisborne.
Location: Corner of Childers Road and Customhouse Street, Gisborne city centre.
7. Do Some Stargazing on a Special Astronomy Tour
On a clear night, simply lying back with your loved one at one of the romantic Gisborne accommodations and gazing at the southern hemisphere stars is a special experience. Enhance it further with a stargazing tour with Gisborne Astro Tours, located in the outskirt village of Patutahi away from any light pollution. Your astronomer guide will show you some of the rare celestial targets only seen from New Zealand’s latitude through a powerful telescope on a roof observatory.
Location: 23 Bilham Road, Patutahi, approximately 15km (9 miles) from Gisborne city centre.
8. Taste Gisborne’s Wine, Craft Beer and Cider
With a warm and dry climate with sheltered valleys, Gisborne is a productive fruit-growing region making the local wine and cider-makers very happy. It’s bound to make you happy to once you discover the tastes of the Gisborne wine region at cellar doors, such as the Bushmere Estate, Millton and Matawhero. They all offer a romantic setting of vineyard gardens and rustic farmhouses to taste wines and indulge on platters with your loved one. Alternatively, try a range of wines at the Gisborne Wine Centre in the city centre, opt for beer tasting at the Sunshine Brewery, or cider tasting at the Harvest Cidery! Find out more about these foodie experiences in the 9 Things to Do in Gisborne for Foodies.
Location: Bushmere Estate – 166 Main Road SH2. Millton – 119 Papatu Road, Manutuke. Matawhero – 189 Riverpoint Road, RD1. Gisborne Wine Centre – 3/50 Esplanade, Gisborne city. Sunshine Brewery – 49 Awapuni Road, Awapuni. Harvest Cidery – 91 Customhouse Street, Gisborne city centre.
9. Smell the Flowers at the Botanical Gardens
Simply enjoying a stroll hand-in-hand is an enjoyable way to spend some time together in Gisborne. The Botanical Gardens offers a romantic curation of roses, ponds and even cacti along its winding walkway. Make more of an activity out of it by connecting the Botanical Gardens with a walk on the Oneroa Walkway alongside the Turanganui River out to Waikanae Beach. Find out more in the 10 Gisborne Walks You Can’t Miss.
Location: Access is between Aberdeen Road and the Taruheru River.
10. Treat Your Loved One to a Romantic Dinner Along the Riverside
Gisborne has many fantastic eateries that can’t help but impress, from fine dining on the riverside to casual bistros. First, check out the fine dining restaurants in The Luxury Guide to Gisborne. Then try Portofino, an Italian restaurant using locally-sourced ingredients. Alternatively, a stunning place to watch the sunset and try Gisborne wines with your loved one is at the Crawford Road Kitchen with plates designed to be shared. For a special trip out of town, head to the Bushmere Arms, a charming historic pub set among flower gardens making for a delightful setting for afternoon tea or dining on New Zealand cuisine. For more recommendations, check out The Foodie Guide to Gisborne.
Location: Portofino – 12 Peel Street. Crawford Road Kitchen – Esplanade Inner Harbour. Bushmere Arms – 673 Matawai Road, Waerenga-a-Hika.