We are passionate about all students having an equal opportunity to see and touch the topics they are learning about, to get out of their comfort zone and expand their minds regardless of background, culture or beliefs.
It is heart warming (and sometimes tear jerking!) listening to the students’ growth and reflections around our fire pit at the end of a stay.
We aim to provide your school group with a comfortable stay, as well as a memorable, educational and fun experience outside the classroom.

Make New Zealand History come alive!

Our ‘hands on’ School History package will step your students into New Zealand’s rich past and is a memorable, educational and fun way to learn about History.
A 3 day, 2 night accommodation & history activity package for just $199 per student.

This package offers a hands-on history experience that aligns perfectly with the curriculum, making it an ideal educational trip for your students. It’s our most popular package for schools at the moment.

Affordable Accommodation options

Enjoy exclusive use of the Lodge offering 12 separate outward facing rooms accommodating around 70 guests at any one time.   The Lodge hosts a fully equipped kitchen leading out to a lounge with large stone log fire and dining area that opens out onto a large deck. Dedicated use of male and female bathrooms are completely separate from any other guests. A marquee can also be set up alongside the Lodge (by prior arrangement) offering an extra undercover area.

  • From only $22.00 per child per night
  • Adults from $30.00 per night

Camping with exclusive use of facilities and reserved areas of the Park – just for your group.

  • From only $12.00 per child per night
  • Adults from $16.00 per night

Additional cabins and a variety of self contained accommodation are also available.

Curriculum Links

Our holiday park is situated in a picturesque location surrounded by 14 acres of native bush and a gateway to the Bay of Islands. We are only a short trip to Russell & Waitangi both rich in New Zealand history & culture.
Our location offers over 50 activities that are rich in content for your school’s curriculum requirements, covering a range of educational areas including Social Sciences, History, People and Places. Ask us for a copy of our activities booklet – schools@russellaccommodation.co.nz

History – We are centrally located to Waitangi Treaty Grounds & Museums, Heritage tours – Pompallier Mission, Kerikeri Stone Store & Kemp House, Rewa’s Village, Te Ahurea, Russell Museum, Christ Church, Kororāreka Marae, the site of the first Capital, Flagstaff hill and much much more.

Cultural – We have incorporated a Te Ao Māori approach to a number of unique cultural education activities that we offer at the park. The Tikanga Māori values of Kaitiakitanga, Manaakitanga and Whanaungatanga are entwined in these activities for schools they include: The Art of Hāngī, Raranga, Rongoā, Fire Pit Experience – Waiata & Narratives, and Kiwi Tours.

Nature & Environmental based – Students can explore our Kiwi trail looking for Kiwi (and may be lucky enough to see one in the wild). We teach the students about our 14 acres of native flora and fauna including the 55 species of birdlife, as well as the pest control work we undertake that enabled us to win a Predator Free award in 2019 & 2021, a TIA Sustainable Tourism award in 2022, and encourages the birdlife and native trees to flourish.

Itinerary Planning

We can help you with your itinerary to make planning easy for you with just one point of contact to organise your whole trip. Our team will work closely with you to provide a personalised itinerary that meets your budget and curriculum requirements. We work with all local businesses and our community to obtain the best prices for all the Bay of Islands (and wider Northland) activities including Waitangi Treaty Grounds, R Tucker -Thompson tall ship, Explore – cruises to the Hole in the Rock, Pompallier Mission and Printery, Kororāreka Museum , and many more. Talk to us about the options – some additional costs may apply.


Talk to us

Talk to us about your upcoming school trip requirements and we will work out a package to suit your needs & budget.
With prior arrangement we can provide for your cooking, cutlery and crockery requirements or catering options.
Our experienced team are all police checked and will provide you with assistance throughout your stay.  They will even provide you with a RAMS form for you to adapt for your group.

Activity ideas at the park…

There is so much to do at Russell – Orongo Bay Holiday Park for school trips you won’t want to leave! 

Some activities we recommend for your school are: 

  • Cooling off in the Swimming Pool (October until May) 
  • Free time on the Playground 
  • Exploring our Kiwi trailcut within acres of native bush at the rear of our Park and if you venture the trail at night you might be lucky enough to see a kiwi in the wild! You will regularly hear the distinctive call of the kiwi at night. 
  • An authentic camping experience sitting around the outdoor camp fire (subject to fire regulations), toasting marshmallows and star gazing 
  • Cooking your own meals in our wood fired pizza oven and barbecues 
  • Table tennis  
  • Exploring the 14 acres of native bush and nature walks that surround the park. Building dens or net fishing in the stream.  
  • Play sports and plan activities on the large grassed areas 
  • Learning about and seeing native flora and fauna – tree planting, conservation, predator control and bird identification 
  • Waking up to the sounds of over 55 species of bird, including rare Pateke, Weka and Kiwi 
  • Māori cultural activities onsite (by prior arrangement and subject to additional cost). 

Activity ideas in Russell…

Many schools stay at Russell – Orongo Bay Holiday Park to discover New Zealand’s historic sites. The Bay of Islands was where the Māori first arrived in New Zealand and Kororāreka, Russell was the first European settlement established in New Zealand.   There are so many historic sites and activities for schools including: 

  • The first capital site of New Zealand in Okiato en route to your accommodation in Orongo Bay, Russell. 
  • stroll on the boardwalk around the mangrove fringed Orongo Bay and walkway to Russell township from the Park. 
  • The oldest working church in the country – Christ Church – take a look inside and spot the musket holes from the battles between the Europeans and the Maori. 
  • A trip along the picturesque Russell waterfront past the Duke of Marlborough (1st liquor licence in the country) 
  • Pass by The Gables, NZ’s oldest restaurant, built on whale bone foundations and once a hideout for stowaways, retell stories of drunken debauchery in the hellhole of the pacific. 
  • Pompallier Mission and Printery – New Zealands earliest industrial building – a print house and tannery. Set up by the French Catholic missionaries who preceded the English.  A fascinating and well presented story and tour for all school groups. 
  • Kororāreka Museum 
  • Waitangi Treaty Grounds – Learn about the Treaty of Waitangi with a fun and invigorating tour ending with an exhilarating cultural show.  A short ferry trip from Russell to Waitangi. 
  • Heritage Sites to visit in the area include Marsden Cross, Kerikeri Mission – Stone Store & Kemp House, Kororipo Pā, Te Waimate Mission and Okuratope . 
  • A ride on the Bay of Islands Vintage Railway – the very first railway in the North Island, leading to the longest wooden curved bridge in the Southern Hemisphere. 
  • trip out to the Hole in the Rock to spot the dolphins and maybe some Orca.  
  • Setting sail on an iconic Tall Ship – take a Youth Sail training voyage out on the R Tucker Thompson, operated by a not-for-profit charitable trust.
  • Get involved in some conservation activities with Project Island Song, a community group who are bringing back the birdsong to the Islands through organising volunteer efforts, reintroducing species to the islands, and providing conservation education, such as floating classrooms for schools.

and much much more!