Here are some of our favourite beaches

It’s a conversation topic that can divide families and friends – and nope, we are not talking about politics. It is, of course, what beach is the best in the country?

We asked some of our Stuff colleagues for their favourites:

Waipātiki Beach, Hawke’s Bay

40 minutes north of Napier is the best beach. There’s beautiful white sand, clear water and powerful surf. The beach is in a gorgeous setting with dramatic cliffs on one side and native bush walks just minutes away.

There’s also a lagoon, a creek with a swing, and a grassy reserve which is great for some cricket or frisbee. The drive in is narrow and windy, but so worth it once you’re there.

Waimarama, Hawke’s Bay

Just 30-35 minutes from Hastings. The view from the hill before the descent down to the beach settlement lifts your spirits.

Driving in, the cemetery where Bruno Lawrence rests, in the area where Blerta used to hang out. Ice-cream by day, fish and chips by night at the general store. Walks to a beach long enough for a good run, and to keep your dog happy. Ocean stretching to Chile or somewhere. Lifeguards watching over us as we bash ourselves against the waves. The aspect of Bare Island looking back towards us. Memories of beach cricket and kicking a football, our younger selves. Never a bad day at Waimaz. (Footnote: I tried to buy a house there once but the owners were going through a relationship split and one refused to sign the agreement. Heartbreak. On another occasion my father-in-law failed to tell me the house next door was selling for $90,000. Even worse.


Fav spots outside of Hawke’s Bay:

  • Paradise Beach, Charteris Bay, Canterbury
  • Castlepoint Beach, Wairarapa
  • Corsair Bay, Lyttelton Harbour, Canterbury
  • Back Beach, New Plymouth
  • Split Apple Rock, Tasman
  • Kaiteriteri, Tasman
  • Hot Water Beach, Coromandel Peninsula


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First published by Stuff. Click here to read the full article.