This Department of Conservation Wildlife Reserve at Nugget Point has dramatic views of “The Nuggets.” These wave-eroded rocks, which are likened to the shape of gold nuggets, can be seen from the viewing platform at the Nugget Point Lighthouse. The lighthouse was built in 1869-70, is 9.5 metres high and situated 76 metres above sea level.
The walk from the car park is 20 minutes (one way). Along the way you may see the fur seal colony on the rocks at sea level to the left of the track and also below the lighthouse, or the many seabirds that make The Nuggets their home. During the months of December – February elephant seals also make The Nuggets their stopover point.
Roaring Bay, which is on the road to Nugget Point, is only a short walk (15 minutes one way) from the car park to a bird-viewing hide. Yellow eyed penguins can be seen here as they move from the sea to their nesting places in coastal vegetation. These shy birds are best viewed late in the afternoon when they come ashore after fishing at sea. Yellow eyed penguins (hoiho) are one of the rarest penguins in the world and they are unique to New Zealand and the sub-Antarctic islands.
The Nuggets Road