Best Beaches in New Zealand

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Following on from our post about some of our favourite beaches in Oz, here's our selection of the best beaches across NZ:

North Island

NZ BeachMount Maunganui Beach
– not only because it's Caroline's hometown! Also known as “The Mount”.

Raglan Beach – spiritual home of the kiwi surfer and famous for its black sand. If you have the required level of skill, it's possible to catch a wave and cruise for up to two kilometres.

Oke Bay – isolated and romantic, beautifully quiet, dolphin pods, requires a bit of a walk, but so worth it.

Piha Beach – great surfing beach and one of the busiest in NZ, now has its own tv programme.

Hahei Beach
– clear blue water and a great holiday place.

Cathedral Cove – access by walking or by boat, fantastic spot and safe swimming beach.

Waipu Cove – people have been camping in tents with the kids here for years, it's still as good, and super popular with kiwi families.

Ohope Beach – quiet, clean, white sandy beach, good for swimming.

South Island

NZ BeachWharariki Beach – one of the many beaches in Golden Bay (because of the sand!) at the top of the South Island (Nelson/Marlborough region).

Kaiteriteri Beach – very popular, probably the most well known beach.
 
Kaikoura – rocky beaches and lots of sealife (whales, dolphins and seals - Ohau Point is where you can find seals lounging in the sunshine!  One of Jen's favourite places due to the views. Think beaches, sunshine and snow-capped mountains in the background – amazing!

Punakaiki (or Pancake Rocks) – not a swimming beach but definitely worth checking out especially because of the blowholes of water shooting up through the rocks.

Okains Bay – one of many sheltered sandy beaches on the Banks Peninsula. Great for camping.

Tunnel Beach  – located off the Dunedin to Brighton coastal road. It draws its name from a passage that was hand carved in the 1870s through a rock promontory that allows access to a lovely secluded beach at the base of the cliffs.