Many surfers cancel New Zealand from surf destinations because it’s too far and cold. The cold argument doesn’t apply to Northland, where you can find clean, warm subtropical waters in both sides of the peninsula, which is set up to receive 300 ° swells. From SSW to SE, the swells hit numerous beaches, points and reefbreaks, which aren’t crowded. Northland is relatively narrow and at the narrowest point it takes less than 1 hour to drive from the east to the west coast. The Twin Coast Discovery Highway leads to the best surfing destinations, so cruising with a motorhome or van is perfection. That’s why you can’t miss our surf trip proposal in New Zealand!
Piha is the most famous surf beach in New Zealand, 40km from the town of Sail, this black sand beach, with its steep cliffs and majestic Lion Rocks, has a truly impressive scenery in front of it. The back of the beach is covered by the Waitakere Ranges, a protected park of subtropical forest accessible via numerous paths. When the swell is small, you can find good surfing conditions at Big Beach in North Piha . Another popular beach is Muriwai beach , where the waves break thanks to sandbars shaped by the currents. Big SW swells can create quality rights like in Kirra (best with low tide coming in) … but that’s rare.
Waipoua Reef can be reached with an hour’s walk from the Wairau river. These isolated rights are excellent challenge waves suitable only for experienced and skilled surfers in big wave riding. Also on the west side there is Pines , a very powerful wave with strange cover-up sections in smaller waves. Continuing south we find Mukie 1 and Mukie 2 : both with fast and tubing waves, but the former slightly better in low tide conditions. Close to Ahipara there are Peacks and Wreck Bay , two left points separated from each other. The first can be reached with a difficult row and it is recommended for experienced surfers, while the second is closer and it is perfect for beginners. All spots are offshore with all variations of the S winds but there are strong currents. 90 Mile Beach is one of the most pristine beaches on earth. Watch out for the soft sand, driving a 4WD could be crucial! Small swells with NE winds create good conditions. Scott Point at the end of 90 Miles is one of those magnet-swells suitable for well-equipped adventurers and surfers.
Many surfers check out Henderson Bay , a beachbreak full of reefs that delivers fast (even tubing) rides in both the inside and middle line-up (works very frequently). Similar but less constant, is Taupo Bay: a series of large and powerful peaks, with the addition of some quality right swells from the northeast. The Bay of Island region works well with all swells from the east. Beautiful Elliot Bay has clean beachbreaks, even when the whole coast is flat. A swell from SE is the signal for Whananaki North , where long lefts are formed with medium-low tide that often give very pleasant sessions (tends to close-out with more than 2m). To surf with good rights, look at the rivermouth, here there is Pataua Bar , but remember that the quality of the wave depends on the flow of the river and the NE swell. Difficult take-offs and tubes – only recommended for experienced surfers.
Beginners should head to Forestry – they could find beachbreaks and a left point that works with NE swells, crowded on weekends. Close to Auckland on the east coast there is Orewa Beach , perfect for beginners.
Tariff per person, starting from:
|Departure||Northerner||Orewa Beachside||Piha Beachstay Hostel|
|From 1 January 2020 to 31 December 2020||€ 263||€ 515||€ 242|
Roaring Forties are the leading swell machine with more than 300 days of SW-W swell from 2-15ft per year. From November to March there is cyclone season with solid groundswells on the NE coast, which can last from a few hours to days. As cyclones move south, E-SE swells are produced. When warm tropical air hits the South Tasman Sea, unusual NW swells are produced combined with E winds. Semi diurnal tides with 10ft max range.
How to get there: No visa is required for a visit of less than 30 days. Auckland is the main airport and Wellington is the capital. Air New Zealand accepts boards on international flights. $ 20 boarding fee.
Getting around : The Twin Coast Discovery Highway is a scenic drive on the North Island. Buses from Auckland to Kaitaia take about 6h ($ 60) while from Auckland to Cape Reinga by car it takes about 6h. Renting a car for a week costs $ 160. Escape Rental rents campervans that perfectly satisfy the needs of surfers.
Accommodation and Food : Ahipara is a good place where you can stay. Options include cheap backpackers, B & Bs, spacious parks, family motels, or luxury hotels from $ 15- $ 150. Ahipara bay Motel is a good accomodation with moderate prices. When it’s hot, consider camping as well. You will pay $ 12-25 for a meal. Try the superb kiwi wines.
Climate : The climate is sub-tropical with hot and humid summers (14-23 ° C) and cool, mild winters (8-17 ° C). SW winds prevail for most of the year. Weather can change rapidly with tropical cyclones bringing extreme weather conditions (but not snow).
Nature and Culture : The west coast is filled with windswept wild harbors, ancient forests and historic weighbridges. The Bay of Island and The Poor Knights Island Marine Reserve are well known. Don’t forget to visit Whangarei, the Scottish settlement in Waipu, and the beautiful Whangaroa harbor.
Dangers and annoyances : The main problem is the cold, the wind and some rocks covered with sharp mussels. Crowds are only present in Piha, Muriwai and the northern Auckland spots.
Suggestions : It is essential to book for the high season, between the months of December and March. The quality of the boards in Auckland is high and there are numerous surf shops in the city. Reglan is a 3h drive south.
Exchange rate 1 EUR = 1.08 USD; 1 € = 1.51 NZD; 1 EUR = 1.41 AUD
Exchange rate variations (more than 3%) will lead to an adjustment of costs. They will be communicated within 20 days of departure.
The tariff does not include
Duration: 8 days / 6 nights
from € 242 - Excluding flights
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