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It requires a massive leap of imagination to consider this peaceful, small township, nestled on sparkling shores in the heart of the Bay of Islands, as the ‘hell hole of the Pacific’, a moniker sprung from lawless days as a whaling station.

Russell & The Bay of IslandsThe village of Russell maintains a genteel colonial charm. Set amongst lush subtropical bloom, with a selection of excellent restaurants on the calm waterfront, it is a perfect secluded get-away.

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Chris, an Audley Travel specialist

Start planning your tailor-made trip to Russell by contacting one of our New Zealand specialists

Suggested itineraries featuring Russell

This sample itinerary will give you an idea of what is possible when you travel in Russell, and showcases routes we know work particularly well. Treat this as inspiration, because your trip will be created uniquely by one of our specialists.

Map of Russell

Places & hotels on the map

    Places near Russell

    Accommodation choices for Russell

    We’ve selected a range of accommodation options for when you visit Russell. Our choices usually come recommended for their character, facilities and service or location. Our specialists always aim to suggest properties that match your preferences.

    • Eagle Spirit, Eagles Nest

      Eagles Nest


      The Eagles Nest is made up of five luxury villas that look out over the Bay of Islands. Each has its own lap pool or spa, spacious rooms and chefs who will design a menu of your choice.

    • Arcadia Lodge, Russell & The Bay of Islands

      Arcadia Lodge


      Arcadia Lodge is a large, characterful two-storey house with just five rooms. Its expansive decking overlooking Russell and the bay is the ideal place to enjoy breakfast in the morning or a glass of wine in the evening.