Beach vacations in the west of Auckland offer a spectacular variety of beaches that embody everything New Zealand is famous for wild, unspoiled, green, captivating, vast, and adventurous.
Once when only sporadic glimpses of the city are caught through the thick woods of the Waitakere Ranges the feeling of isolation takes over. Though, nothing is like it seems. Nearby houses are hidden in the dense growth providing only their inhabitants with stunning views over the rugged coastline to the Tasman Sea.
After a long and winding journey, down to the coast and the following brief walk to the beach all effort is rewarded with vast stretches of black sand. Glittering in the afternoon sun, the beach fades into the sea on the distant horizon. By then the thought baffles that Central Auckland is less than an hour away.
The Tasman Sea sweeps the west coast. Captivating black sand alternates with a rugged coastline to be taken over by native bush and rainforest. This unspoiled scenery is stage for much loved water activities.
Other activities like skim-boarding, paragliding, beach horseback riding and rock fishing complement beach vacations on the west coast.
Piha, Muriwai, Bethells and Karekare are favourite surfing locations by locals year round. These four west coast beaches are also ideal destinations during the summer months for body boarding and swimming. Volunteering surf life guards who know local surf conditions secure the safest area between strong currents, the coast is known for. Therefore swim and body-board between the flags. At Muriwai and Piha are surf schools that teach this skill and even rent out gear to learn it. Other beach toys like a blow cart or body board can be hired at Muriwai surf shop.
Muriwai is the beach to go for the longest, unobstructed beach walk with your for legged friend. The second longest is from Karekare towards Whatipu or the reverse direction. The way is flanked by the Waitakeres and leads along a scientific research which prohibits dogs. The most secluded beach among the west coast beaches is Anawhata.
For larger parties bookable BBQ picnic areas are on Muriwai and Cornwallis beach. Where the latter beach is very flat, meaning at low tide the water is out a long way. Which families with smaller children find safer for their offspring. Fish and Chip shops are on Piha South and Muriwai. On Bethells beach during the summer months on the weekend a mobile fish and chips wagon intrigues senses with freshly prepared eateries after an afternoon on the beach.
Painters and photographers are quite fond of the popular Piha Beach in hindsight of the frequency one comes across them. Tony Ogle picks up on the favourite past time activity surfing and with that sets Hawaii and Piha into relation. Rob McGregor and Jane Puckey chose a colourful study of the iconic Lion Rock.
There are some guided tours that include in their tour a visit to the west coast of Auckland. Otherwise only owning a car, renting a car or motor home will give independent traveller the chance to get to the west coast beaches. The furthest one gets by public transport is about 13.5 km from Piha away.
The skyline at Waitemata Harbour on the east side is highlighted by some of Auckland's famed icons. Eye catching are Harbour Bridge and Sky Tower. Waitemata Harbour, too is very tidal. With their calm sea condition they fit the profile of an ideal family beach. Favourite beach activities are: swimming, fishing, boating, canoeing, kayaking and waterskiing, and picnicking on some awesome beach picnic spots.
For holidays in New Zealand
In New Zealand the sun is burning. The UV ray protecting ozone layer is damaged. This leaves a high sunburn risk and may result in future health impairment.
So do it the Kiwi way to get the most out of your beach vacations in New Zealand