Which Island Has the First Sunrise?

What’s the First Sunrise Island? – Have you ever wondered, in which part of the world, the first sunrise takes place? Many cameras capture beautiful colors that create magical images. In various cities or islands of the world, tourists gather in specific places to enjoy this wonderful sight.  Βut where does the sun say the first “good morning”?


Well, it seems the sun’s favorite island is the East Cape in New Zealand.   In the morning, the sun makes its appearance over Mount Hikurangi, embracing nature and giving beautiful images to locals and tourists.

The East Cape is the easternmost point of New Zealand’s main islands, and the best place to see the incredible sunrise is at the East Cape Lighthouse located in Hicks Bay.  Or in the heart of the rising sun, on Mount Hikurangi, the highest non-volcanic peak on the North Island.

And as the sun slowly goes up, you can indulge in surfing with the first colors of the day accompanying you. On the other hand, if you want a shore activity, we recommend riding at sea.  Lovely and refreshing!

Take a walk on the island, towards Saint Mary’s church. It is considered one of the best Maori churches in New Zealand, with its beautiful architectural design, sculptures and woven panels.  Don’t miss a nice lunch or dinner on the island’s restaurants, tasting traditional dishes.


Additionally, we recommend taking a one-day trip to Gisborne to enjoy snorkeling in the beautiful Pouawa Bay.

Fifty kilometers east of Opotiki, you will find the Motu river where you can do rafting in its rushing waters.

Tip: If you choose this activity, prepare for camping as the rafting can be up to 100km.

So, if you set foot in New Zealand, don’t miss the chance to visit the East Cape. You will be among the first to face the first sunrise, and surely, it will be something you will remember forever.

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  1. The Chatham Islands-also part of New Zealand-are much further east than East Cape in the North Island so they are clearly the first island to see the sunrise. Mind you, other small Pacific islands are almost on the International Date line so maybe they win the prize.