Flagstaff Hill Historic Reserve, Russell

4.4
#4 of 11 in Historic Sites in Northland Region
Historic Site Tourist Spot
Climb the well-maintained path through regenerating coastal forest to the summit of Flagstaff Hill Historic Reserve, where you can enjoy sweeping vistas overlooking the Bay of Islands. Close to the top, you'll pass a vast sundial with a mosaic base, commemorating the Institute of Surveyors Centennial. At the peak, the eponymous flagpole towers above you, and a plaque explains the history behind the hill's name. The British colonial government was the first to erect a flag here in 1840. Hone Heke, a local Māori chief, regarded the Union Jack flying over the bay as a symbol of the loss of Māori control in the area. Under Heke's command, Māori cut down the flagstaff four times between 1844 and 1845. Years later, the Māori planted a fifth and final flag as a symbol of reconciliation with the British. Keep your eyes peeled for the kiwis that populate the area, although the shy flightless birds are expert at hiding from passersby. Add Flagstaff Hill Historic Reserve and other attractions to your Russell trip itinerary using our Russell travel itinerary maker.
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298 reviews
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  • The most amazing views of the bay of islands, you can see forever. Best on a sunny day. Also enjoy the Weka who walk around the car park and can appear by the Flagstaff. Historical place with views ov...  more »
  • Hone Heki had a beef with this place and worth the easy but steepish bush walk to see a key piece of NZs rich history and a great view!  more »
  • While it's definitely a steep drive up, be thankful you dont have to climb it!!!! The view is invredible and worth the effort. We spent about 20 minutes all up here so its easy to fit in.  more »

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