How to Experience Luxury in Napier
Amidst some of New Zealand’s oldest vineyards and on the stunning shores of Hawke’s Bay, Napier offers a lavish experience for those who take the leap to venture this far off the beaten track. Unlike anywhere else in New Zealand, Napier’s township is mainly constructed with art deco architecture making it feel like you’re walking in a different place in time. To enhance the experience, vintage cars are a vehicle of choice for private tours, while V8 trikes and 4WD tours are other options to explore the surrounding countryside. Those looking to escape the urban ambience will find backcountry adventure with white water rafting and raft fishing available. As for accommodation, don’t get us started on the lavish boutique lodges and luxury hotels – all of that can be viewed in the 8 Best Luxury Accommodation in Napier.
So whether it’s for a special occasion or “just because”, plan your ideal premium getaway with this luxury guide to Napier.
Luxury Activities in Napier
- Experience a premium wine tour
- Tour Napier in a vintage vehicle
- Take a private art deco tour with the Art Deco Trust
- Get the real Maori experience with Waimarama Maori Tours
- See New Zealand’s largest mainland gannet colony with Gannet Safaris Overland
- Tackle the rapids of the Mohaka River with Mohaka Rafting
- Do raft fishing on the Mohaka River with Raft Fish NZ
- Tour Napier and Te Mata Peak in a V8 trike with Supertrike Tours
- Take a private bespoke tour of Napier with Tour Napier
- Indulge in Napier’s fine dining restaurants.
Find out more about each experience and their location in the 10 Luxury Activities in Napier.
Luxury Adventure Activities
While many of the highlights of Napier can be found in the comfort of its wineries and cosy vintage car tour (more on that later), some of the outdoor adventures for the discerning traveller include exclusive tours to New Zealand’s largest mainland gannet colony, authentic Maori experiences and more.
Starting with one of Hawke’s Bay’s most breathtaking natural attractions, the Cape Kidnappers gannet colony allows you to get up-close to these majestic yellow-eyed seabirds known for diving at point-break speed. One of the limited ways to get to the Plateau Cape Kidnappers gannet colony is with Gannet Safaris Overland who have access over New Zealand’s largest privately-owned wildlife sanctuary to get there. Although they offer bus tours, there’s an opportunity to enhance the experience with a private 4WD tour. Find out more about Gannet Safaris Overland on Viator and Tripadvisor.
From indigenous birds to the indigenous culture, Napier is also close to one of New Zealand’s most authentic Maori tours. Waimarama Maori Tours offers private tours with one of their Maori family members to take you from the sandy shores of Waimarama Beach where their ancestors arrived in New Zealand to the pa site remains of the Hakikino Conservation Reserve. Find out more about the tours on offer by Waimarama Maori Tours on Viator and Tripadvisor.
Explore Napier and the surrounding area in a unique way with Supertrike Tours. Sit back, enjoy the sights and feel the breeze through your hair as you blast around Napier in a luxury five-seater V8 trike. The team can organise bespoke half-day and full-day tours to visit Te Mata Peak, some of the various wineries and breweries of the area, and more. Find out more about Supertrike Tours on Viator and Tripadvisor.
For more outdoor activities, like a private art deco tour, check out the 10 Luxury Activities in Napier.
Luxury All-weather Activities
Whatever the weather is doing, you can always wine in Napier! Hawke’s Bay is New Zealand’s first established wine region that is home to a variety of premium wineries to this day. There are many fantastic tours to enjoy the various wineries, but one of the more premia is with Bay Tours and Charters. They offer wine tours with a trip up Te Mata Peak, as well as a visit to two different cellar doors before indulging in a winery lunch. Learn more about Bay Tours and Charters on Viator and Tripadvisor. Another fantastic option is the small-group tour with Vines and Views Tours, who offer a six-hour experience with tastings at four wineries, a chef’s platter lunch and tour of a wine-making facility and more. Find out more on Viator and Tripadvisor.
Whatever the weather is doing, you can also enjoy exploring the sights of Napier in the luxury (and dryness) of a vintage car. To complement the art deco architecture of the city, Napier Classic Cars (more info on Viator and Tripadvisor) and Hooters Vintage & Classic Vehicle Hire (on Viator and Tripadvisor) both offer sightseeing tours in classic vehicles. With just your group in the vehicle, you have the opportunity to customise the trip. Otherwise, your driver-guide will show you the sights and even their vehicle showroom, in the case of Hooters.
Finally, experience the true outdoors and untamed wilderness surrounding Napier on a white water rafting tour with Mohaka Rafting. Choose your adventure, a six-hour river journey experience on grade three rapids or a full-day hardcore rafting excursion with grades four and five rapids. See Mohaka Rafting’s range of tours on Viator and Tripadvisor. Alternatively, one-day to multi-day rafting and fishing excursions are available with Raft Fish NZ – more information is available on Viator and Tripadvisor.
For more ideas, see the 10 Things to Do in Napier on a Rainy Day.
Fine Dining in Napier
As a foodie hub of the North Island, in the midst of vineyards and fruit orchards, Napier unsurprisingly has a fantastic selection of fine dining restaurants. One for a special occasion is the Mission Restaurant (198 Church Road) at the Mission Estate Winery. In this elegantly restored historic seminary building, the restaurant serves contemporary European cuisine using only local produce. Of course, their own wines are a highlight too. Another great winery to spoil yourself with world-class wine and nibbles at is Craggy Range (253 Waimarama Road) in Havelock North.
For fine seafood and a taste of the Pacific, book a table at Pacifica Kaimoana Restaurant (209 Marine Parade). The boutique restaurant exclusively offers degustation dining on Maori-inspired cuisine.
And transport yourself to France at the Poivre & Sel Restaurant (189 Marine Parade) offering all homemade cuisine from genuine French owners.
For more recommendations, see The Foodie Guide to Napier.