10 Best Beaches in Whangarei© Northland Inc
10 Best Beaches in Whangarei

10 Best Beaches in Whangarei

© Northland Inc
Article Single Pages© NZPocketGuide.com
Article Single Pages© NZPocketGuide.com
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The Beaches in Whangarei You Can’t Miss

If you are a complete and utter beach bum then Whangarei is an amazing place to be. The city is surrounded by magnificent beaches from the long sweeping beaches of Bream Bay in the south all the way to the hidden coves and inlets of the northern Tutukaka Coast. There are around 20 beach destinations in the Whangarei area and we’ve picked out some of the best beaches in Whangarei right here!

This list of Whangarei beaches has something for everyone, from surf beaches to picturesque beaches to safe swimming beaches for families, and everything in between. The more popular beaches in Whangarei have lifeguards patrolling in summer, indicating where it is safest to swim. Summer in New Zealand is between December and February.

1. Langs Beach

Bream Bay, just south of Whangarei, is the ideal beach destination! One of the most picturesque beaches in Bream Bay is Langs Beach, fringed with pohutukawa trees and rocky headlands. Either surf or relax and enjoy the views of the offshore islands. If you want to spend more time beachcombing, seeing waterfalls and even caves, then check out the 10 Best Things to Do in Waipu & Bream Bay.

Location: Cove Road, Langs Beach, approximately 45 minutes drive from Whangarei city.

Pxhere© Pxhere

2. Ocean Beach

With a 5 km (3 mi) stretch of golden sandy beach backed with sand dunes and bashed by fun waves, Ocean Beach is definitely a Whangarei beach you’ll want to hit in the summer! It’s a popular surf spot and has lifeguards on patrol during the summer months for safer swimming. Whether you like to play in the waves or take a long stroll on the sand, Ocean Beach is a winner for everyone. Find this awesome beach in the Whangarei Heads area, along with the 15 Best Things to Do at Whangarei Heads.

Location: End of Ocean Beach Road, Whangarei Heads, approximately 45 minutes drive from Whangarei city.

10 Best Beaches in Whangarei© Northland Inc

3. Ngunguru Beach

One of the closest beaches to Whangarei city, Ngunguru has beaches along a sheltered estuary backed by the village with cafes and shops. It’s possible to surf at Ngunguru sometimes when the conditions are good. Ngunguru also marks the southern end of the Tutukaka Coast, packed with walks, beaches and more adventures, as highlighted in the 10 Best Things to Do in Tutukaka.

Location: Ngunguru Road, approximately 25 minutes drive from Whangarei city.

Phillip Capper on Flickr© Phillip Capper on Flickr

4. Pataua North and Pataua South

Get off the beaten track and explore these hidden gems of the Whangarei Heads! Pataua North is a long sweeping beach that is a fantastic surf spot. Pataua South has a sheltered estuary on one side of a long footbridge and an ocean-side beach on the other.

Location: Pataua South is on the Pataua South Road, Whangarei Heads. Access to Pataua North is on the Pataua South Road then Whareora Road. 40 minutes drive from Whangarei city.

Andrew Lynch on Flickr© Andrew Lynch on Flickr

5. Ruakaka Beach

With 13 km (8 mi) of sandy beach to enjoy, Ruakaka is definitely one of the top beaches in Whangarei! What’s more, it’s only 30 minutes drive away from the city! See vibrant blue waters off the coast on this beautiful surf and swimming beach. The beach is best seen at sunrise or sunset! Lifeguards patrol the beach in summer.

Location: Ruakaka Beach Road, approximately 30 minutes drive from Whangarei city.

10 Best Beaches in Whangarei© Pxhere

6. Waipu Cove

Another stunner along Bream Bay is Waipu Cove. Get the full Kiwi seaside experience with shops and cafes to grab an ice cream. The beach is ideal for swimming with lifeguards patrolling in summer. See more activities in the area in the 10 Best Things to Do in Waipu & Bream Bay.

Location: Cove Road, Waipu Cove, approximately 40 minutes drive from Whangarei city.

10 Best Beaches in Whangarei© Unsplash

7. Whale Bay

With no road access, this beach on the Tutukaka Coast is free from road noise making it a little piece of secluded paradise! There are a couple of walks to get to this tree-lined bay, the shortest being a 10-minute walk. Alternatively, you can walk from Matapuri Bay (see below).

Location: Signposted off Matapouri Road at the roadside car park, Matapouri, approximately 40 minutes drive from Whangarei city.

10 Best Beaches in Whangarei© Unsplash

8. Matapouri Bay

This stunning and calm beach on the Tutukaka Coast is cradled by two headlands making it a safe swimming beach for the whole family. There are also walks to the neighbouring Whale Bay (see above) at both ends of the beach.

Location: Matapouri Road, Matapouri, approximately 40 minutes drive from Whangarei city.

10 Best Beaches in Whangarei© Unsplash

9. Sandy Bay

If surf is what you seek then don’t miss Sandy Bay! This beach on the Tutukaka Coast is the best surf beach in the whole Whangarei area. Hire a surfboard from the nearby Tutukaka town and you even have the option to do some beach horse trekking with nearby operators – see the 10 Best Things to Do in Tutukaka to learn more.

Location: Matapouri Road, Matapouri, approximately 55 minutes drive from Whangarei city.

10 Best Beaches in Whangarei© Unsplash

10. Whananaki Estuary

For something a little different, explore the mangrove forests and the unique ecosystem of the Whananaki Estuary. What’s more, the estuary has the longest footbridge in the Southern Hemisphere going right across!

Location: Whananaki North Road, Whananaki, approximately 45 minutes drive from Whangarei city. Take the Matapouri Road until it reaches Marua Road. Turn left then right onto Jubilee Road until it meets the Whananaki North Road. Turn right and follow the road all the way to the coast.

10 Best Beaches in Whangarei© Unsplash

More About Whangarei

That’s it for our list of the best beaches in Whangarei, but it’s by no means the end of our Whangarei travel advice! Check out the guides below for more awesome experiences in the area.

Finally, if there’s anything we’ve missed, you’re likely to find it in The Complete Travel Guide to Whangarei.

Sources:

The information in this guide has been compiled from our extensive research, travel and experiences across New Zealand and the South Pacific, accumulated over more than a decade of numerous visits to each destination. Additional sources for this guide include the following:

Our editorial standards: At NZ Pocket Guide, we uphold strict editorial standards to ensure accurate and quality content.

About The Author

Laura S.

This article has been reviewed and published by Laura, the editor-in-chief and co-founder of NZ Pocket Guide. Laura is a first-class honours journalism graduate and a travel journalist with expertise in New Zealand and South Pacific tourism for over 10 years. She also runs travel guides for five of the top destinations in the South Pacific and is the co-host of over 250 episodes of the NZ Travel Show on YouTube.

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