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There are many different theories on how Bull Creek got its name, from a fictional character called John Bull, to the Otago Witness’ report in 1904 of the story of a wild bull meeting a grisly end in the area, with the bull’s head later being hung on the wall of "Bull Cottage".
More than 40 holiday homes dot the coastline where families have worked together to provide amenities including public toilets, changing rooms for beach activities, and a bush walk. Access to the beach and bush is along a gravel track past the cribs, which are for the most part traditional Kiwi holiday homes.
At low tide it is also possible to cross the mouth of Bull Creek and explore further along the coast, or to walk up the long, sandy inlet to join the start of the bush track. The hour-long bush walk crosses several footbridges as it winds into the Bull Creek Scenic Reserve.