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large gulf of the South Pacific Ocean indenting eastern North Island, New Zealand. It is entered from the north by the Jellicoe and Cradock channels (west and east of Little Barrier Island) and from the northeast by Colville Channel (between Great Barrier Island and the Coromandel Peninsula). To the southeast, the 884-square-mile (2,290-square-kilometre) gulf extends into the Firth of Thames, part of a valley flooded by the sea. The Piako and Waihou rivers enter the firth from the Hauraki Lowlands. Waiheke Island, a resort, lies in the gulf, opposite Waitemata Harbour, the port of Auckland. The name Hauraki comes from the Maori for "north wind."