1. See the Gannet colony
Topped on rugged coastal cliffs and stacks is a colony of gannets! These majestic seabirds are marvellous to see close-up. The best time to see the 1200 pairs of gannets is between August and March.
Location: Maukatia (Maori Bay) car park or the car park at the end of Motutara Road. Walking tracks to the gannet colony is well sign-posted.
2. Walk the Muriwai Beach Loop
To spend more time in the stunning beach environment of Muriwai, take the 1h30min Muriwai Beach Loop Track. This walk takes you through the sand dunes, onto Muriwai Beach and back along the walkway alongside the Coast Road.
Location: There are multiple access points to the walk, but the best place to start is from behind the surf tower at the parking area opposite the motor camp. From here, follow the track north up the beach then follow the 4×4 access road inland to a horse parking area where you then follow the Coast Road Track back to where you started.
3. Do some surfing
Muriwai Beach and Maori Bay are popular surf locations, so try it out if you’re a seasoned surfer! Otherwise, beginners can get into the sport by doing surf lessons with the local surf school.
Location: Muriwai Bay and Maori Bay.
4. Take a trip to Te Henga (Bethells Beach)
Drive or even walk to another stunning west coast beach, Te Henga, otherwise known as Bethells Beach. The beach is popular for surf, exploring the multiple beaches divided by islands and rocky coast on foot, or getting some great views from the Hillary Walkway. Learn more about Bethells Beach in Where to Find Black Sand Beaches in Auckland.
Location: 40 minutes drive from Muriwai Beach. Otherwise, you can walk from Constable Road in Muriwai to Bethells Beach via the Te Henga Walkway (3h20min one-way).
5. Take a trip to Lake Wainamu
While you’re exploring the Bethells Beach area, don’t miss Lake Wainamu! This beautiful lake surrounded by sand dunes is a great place for a swim, to scout out waterfalls at the far end of the lake, and to surf down the sand dunes on a bodyboard! All of this can be done along the 2-hour Lake Wainamu Loop Track.
Location: 35 minutes drive from Muriwai. Lake Wainamu car park, Bethells Road.
6. Play a round of golf
With amazing coastal views and a challenging yet fun 18-hole course, Muriwai Golf Links is a course not to missed in Auckland! The golf club has plenty of facilities, especially for visitors wanting to hire gear and play somewhere affordable. For more places to play golf in Auckland, see Top 5 Golf Courses in Auckland.
Location: Coast Road.