Get your pukapuka (book) at Urupukapuka

Published on 23 December 2021

Otehei Bay pop-up library 2020.jpg

A pop-up library for holiday makers on Urupukapuka in the Bay of Islands is making a welcome return this summer.

The mini library will operate out of the Department of Conservation's Otehei Bay Visitors Centre providing free books to campers and other visitors to Urupukapuka Island.

The pop-up library was run for the first time by Far North District Libraries last summer and proved a big hit with visitors. The service will again provide a range of reading materials free of charge. Because the library is unstaffed, no library card is needed, and users can keep the books if they want to.

Mayor John Carter says the book collection will be made up of good quality, withdrawn library books suitable for all ages. “Many people already visit the conservation centre while on the island. The opportunity to pick up something good to read during the break is an extra incentive to visit the DOC centre.

“We want all visitors to the Far North to feel welcome. Providing free summer reading is just one way we can help to achieve that. This is our gift to you,” he says.

Urupukapuka is the biggest island in the Bay of Islands and is about 40 minutes by ferry from Russell or Paihia. It is part of the Ipipiri or eastern Bay of Islands group. The island's name refers to the many native pukapuka trees that grew on the island. Pukapuka is also the Māori word for book.

The conservation centre and pop-up library will be open from late December 2021 until mid-February 2022.

Far North Libraries is encouraging pop-up library users to photograph themselves alongside the library trolley at the Urupukapuka Island Visitors Centre. Each person who emails a photo to will be sent a prize.