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Stunning scenery and the North Islands largest Seal Colony

Just getting to Cape Palliser is dramatically scenic. As you near the destination the road follows the edge of the coast, providing unstoppable views of the Bay.

The climb to the Cape Palliser lighthouse will test your fitness. There are 250 steps to climb...counted them. During the 19th century, there were about 20 ships wrecked in or near Palliser Bay, once at the top its easy to see why.

The fur seal colony here is the North Island's largest. The breeding season is from mid-November to mid-January.

Cape Palliser Lighthouse

Cape Palliser Lighthouse

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This will test your fitness 250 steps

This will test your fitness 250 steps

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41 reviews with the most recent first, showing page 1 of 4.

Chris Arnold's avatar

Chris Arnold

United Kingdom

Ranking: 8/10

Long drive out but beautiful coastal drive. Lighthouse was pretty and the fur seals are great fun to watch!

Reviewed 12 months ago and experienced in January 2017

Dan Schmidt's avatar

Dan Schmidt

Denmark

Ranking: 9/10

Driving the last bit of Cape Palliser Road there are plenty of opportunity to see seals! Lovely animals not afraid of us and beautiful landscapes as well.

Reviewed about 1 year ago and experienced in January 2017

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Belinda Ziswiler's avatar

Belinda Ziswiler

Switzerland

Ranking: 10/10

See a huge seal colony at Cape Palliser, it is just amazing to watch the bulls, the cows and their babies! A nice lighthouse, amazing rock formations, nice beaches and lovely nature!

Reviewed about 1 year ago and experienced in December 2016

David's avatar

David

France

Ranking: 9/10

Really beautiful landscape, still wild. Lots of seals. You can also find some Paua on the rocks!

Reviewed about 1 year ago and experienced in December 2016

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Jade Williams's avatar

Jade Williams

New Zealand

Ranking: 10/10

A cool place to go see if you are a tourist.

Reviewed about 1 year ago and experienced in November 2016

Lucie Revay's avatar

Lucie Revay

Ranking: 10/10

Absolutely lovely place. The coast is wonderful. The view from the lighthouse is stunning. There are 248 stairs that lead to the lighthouse. Unfortunately no seals whatsoever at this time of year (December).

Reviewed over 1 year ago

Thank You - to the thousands of travellers that have contributed to our Top Voted NZ Activities Map - it's free from Rankers.

Lili Souris's avatar

Lili Souris

Germany

Ranking: 9/10

A lot of nice walks and an awesome scenery. Nice view and seals are next to the road.

Reviewed almost 2 years ago and experienced in February 2016

Luisa Birkel's avatar

Luisa Birkel

Germany

Ranking: 8/10

Nice to be that near to seals!

Reviewed almost 2 years ago and experienced in February 2016

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Olga Barathova's avatar

Olga Barathova

Czech Republic

Ranking: 10/10

We have never seen seals in the wild, lots of small seals, they play together.

Reviewed almost 2 years ago and experienced in February 2016

Adam Pulkrabek's avatar

Adam Pulkrabek

Czech Republic

Ranking: 10/10

Lots of small seals, really nice and cute.

Reviewed almost 2 years ago and experienced in February 2016

Award-1-24px Congratulations Cape Palliser Seal Colony and Lighthouse

Rankers TravellerVoted Awards 2014 Seal Watching Winner

Clara Guinard's avatar

Clara Guinard

France

Ranking: 9/10

This place is very beautiful and there is a colony of seals which was very amazing.

Reviewed about 2 years ago and experienced in March 2016

Anna's avatar

Anna

Germany

Ranking: 8/10

Long gravel road to the lighthouse but the view and the beach near the lighthouse are awesome!

Reviewed about 2 years ago and experienced in January 2016

Sabina Roubickova's avatar

Sabina Roubickova

Czech Republic

Ranking: 10/10

We were very lucky. Weather was brilliant, seals were everywhere and we were able to almost touch them! Walk to the lighthouse is a great idea, especially if you want to take breathtaking pictures!

Reviewed about 2 years ago and experienced in January 2016

41 reviews with the most recent first, showing page 1 of 4.

Chris Arnold's avatar

Chris Arnold

United Kingdom

Ranking: 8/10

Long drive out but beautiful coastal drive. Lighthouse was pretty and the fur seals are great fun to watch!

Reviewed 12 months ago and experienced in January 2017

Dan Schmidt's avatar

Dan Schmidt

Denmark

Ranking: 9/10

Driving the last bit of Cape Palliser Road there are plenty of opportunity to see seals! Lovely animals not afraid of us and beautiful landscapes as well.

Reviewed about 1 year ago and experienced in January 2017

Conservation Campsite Pass

Save up to 70% on campsite fees! Support conservation and experience the natural beauty of NZ. 96 Department of Conservation campsites, one convenient pass.

Get the Pass

Belinda Ziswiler's avatar

Belinda Ziswiler

Switzerland

Ranking: 10/10

See a huge seal colony at Cape Palliser, it is just amazing to watch the bulls, the cows and their babies! A nice lighthouse, amazing rock formations, nice beaches and lovely nature!

Reviewed about 1 year ago and experienced in December 2016

David's avatar

David

France

Ranking: 9/10

Really beautiful landscape, still wild. Lots of seals. You can also find some Paua on the rocks!

Reviewed about 1 year ago and experienced in December 2016

Top Ranked NZ Deals Pass

Access savings worth hundreds of $$ on Top Ranked NZ Accommodation and Activities for just $1 per day.

Get deals pass

Jade Williams's avatar

Jade Williams

New Zealand

Ranking: 10/10

A cool place to go see if you are a tourist.

Reviewed about 1 year ago and experienced in November 2016

Lucie Revay's avatar

Lucie Revay

Ranking: 10/10

Absolutely lovely place. The coast is wonderful. The view from the lighthouse is stunning. There are 248 stairs that lead to the lighthouse. Unfortunately no seals whatsoever at this time of year (December).

Reviewed over 1 year ago

Thank You - to the thousands of travellers that have contributed to our Top Voted NZ Activities Map - it's free from Rankers.

Lili Souris's avatar

Lili Souris

Germany

Ranking: 9/10

A lot of nice walks and an awesome scenery. Nice view and seals are next to the road.

Reviewed almost 2 years ago and experienced in February 2016

Luisa Birkel's avatar

Luisa Birkel

Germany

Ranking: 8/10

Nice to be that near to seals!

Reviewed almost 2 years ago and experienced in February 2016

Camping NZ App Icon

Camping NZ App

Every camping site on your iPhone™, iPad™ or Android™ phone or tablet. Avoid camping penalties using this council approved app. Featuring offline maps.

Download from the App Store Download Android app on Google Play

Olga Barathova's avatar

Olga Barathova

Czech Republic

Ranking: 10/10

We have never seen seals in the wild, lots of small seals, they play together.

Reviewed almost 2 years ago and experienced in February 2016

Adam Pulkrabek's avatar

Adam Pulkrabek

Czech Republic

Ranking: 10/10

Lots of small seals, really nice and cute.

Reviewed almost 2 years ago and experienced in February 2016

Award-1-24px Congratulations Cape Palliser Seal Colony and Lighthouse

Rankers TravellerVoted Awards 2014 Seal Watching Winner

Clara Guinard's avatar

Clara Guinard

France

Ranking: 9/10

This place is very beautiful and there is a colony of seals which was very amazing.

Reviewed about 2 years ago and experienced in March 2016

Anna's avatar

Anna

Germany

Ranking: 8/10

Long gravel road to the lighthouse but the view and the beach near the lighthouse are awesome!

Reviewed about 2 years ago and experienced in January 2016

Sabina Roubickova's avatar

Sabina Roubickova

Czech Republic

Ranking: 10/10

We were very lucky. Weather was brilliant, seals were everywhere and we were able to almost touch them! Walk to the lighthouse is a great idea, especially if you want to take breathtaking pictures!

Reviewed about 2 years ago and experienced in January 2016