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North Island map showing Russell

Russell

In the Bay of Islands, across the water from the bustling town of Paihia and nestled under the hills is Russell. Formerly known as Kororareka, in the whaling days this calm haven used to be known as "The Hell-hole of the Pacific". At the foundation of New Zealand as a colony, Russell was named capital, before the title was moved to Auckland a year later. Today Russell is a quiet little town, home of New Zealand's oldest surviving church, built in 1835, where settlers took refuge during the 1845 sacking of the town. Bullet holes were left in the walls as a reminder of these times.

The Duke of Marlborough, the fourth hotel to be built on its waterfront site, holds the oldest liquor licence in the country. The licence dates back to 1840 but there has been a hotel on the site since 1827. In the early days it was patronized by sailors and whalers.


Russell Township Pompallier House The Strand

Pompallier House on the waterfront was built from rammed earth in 1839 by French Roman Catholic missionaries. It houses a printing press and tannery, originally used to print bibles, that are still operational.

Russell Museum, although small, contains many local and maritime artifacts, including a one fifth scale model of Cook’s ship Endeavour.

On Maiki Hill behind Russell is a flagpole erected in the same position as the four that Hone Heke, the great Maori leader, cut down in protest over the treatment of his people after the signing of the Treaty of Waitangi. Hone Heke was one of the first signatories of the treaty but became disillusioned when the crown did not live up to his understanding of the document he signed.



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Featured Russell Events

Cape Brett Challenge Russell Birdman Festival
Cape Brett Challenge
Kaingahoa Marae, Russell
Saturday 26 April 2014
Russell Birdman Festival
Russell Wharf, Russell
From Friday 11 July 2014 to Sunday 13 July 2014


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Cloud 9 Luxury Villa in Russell
Cloud 9 Luxury Villa in Russell - Holiday Home, Luxury Accommodation, Retreat. Situated above the town of Russell, Cloud 9 is blessed with views across both the Pacific Ocean and the Bay of Islands...
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Bay of Islands and Hole in the Rock Scenic Helicopter Tour
Bay of Islands and Hole in the Rock Scenic Helicopter Tour - Helicopter Tour - Starting from $230.00 per person - Paihia. Get bird’s-eye views of Cape Brett and the Hole in the Rock on a Bay of Islands scenic helicopter tour from Paihia....
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