Shakespeare bay

There are moorings in the South East part of this bay

The beach here is very muddy

the bay is sheltered from all winds except N to NE and has good holding

It is very shallow along the Western shore and across the head of the bay

Very large cruise ships moor here during the summer months, and log ships can be found here all year round

A "No Anchoring Zone" is in place here


Shakespeare Bay is also interesting geologically – as long ago as 1864, officers of the Mines Department found a large fracture following an earthquake fault line running along the shore of the bay. Although Mr Clemens was unsuccessful, coal was discovered there several times – in 1874, 1877 and 1881, and in 1907 an English company secured coal prospecting rights. After 1884 no work of any consequence was done on the Shakespeare Bay coal, but about 1893 there was a renewal of prospecting in the locality. No tangible results followed. A report in 1988 noted that although coal exists in the locality, few seams are now exposed at the surface and are extensively sheared by faults Construction of the Freezing Works on Kaipupu Neck, which was completed in 1900, resulted in Shakespeare Bay receiving the foul runoff. During the Depression and War years the whole of Shakespeare Bay was farmed by the Henson family. Mr Henson also worked at the freezing works as a shepherd. Shakespeare House, the boarding house for single men, was built nearby. Once the Freezing Works had closed and eventually been demolished, the way became clear for construction of Waimahara Wharf, which was opened in May 2000. ‘Waimahara’ means ‘the waters of memory and recollection’, and the wharf was built for timber export on land bought by the Harbour Board years before in readiness for a deep water port. Later that year over 300 people attended a Picton Freezing Works reunion, and unveiled a plaque on Shakespeare Bay Lookout.

Type of beach
Place name meaning
Although there is no record of Maori settlement in the bay, the original name, Kaipupu, (eating shellfish) shows that it was a well-known food gathering place.
Anchor recommendation
Site is within the Picton Harbour no anchor zone
Large deep draught wharf predominantly used for Logs and Cruise ships
Rocks/reef/sand bank warnings
Portions of bay can be very shallow at low water
Approx. 20
Other information
Kaipupu Point wildlife sanctuary