Pakiri beach: top ten campsite and beach secret in one, world wonder

Pakiri Beach: Top Ten campsite and beach insider tip in one

* Post updated on: November 9, 2018

Wanderer, are you coming to Pakiri … then you really tried hard. More than a terribly bad gravel road does not lead there. The appropriate seclusion, together with one of the most impressive beaches of the North Island, results in a campsite location of the superclass.

What do you remember first when you think of New Zealand‘s North Island? Green hills, huge cowries and steaming sulfur springs surely come to mind, but before all other memories, the beautiful beaches are bound to move; where, unlike the South Island, you probably even jumped into the water.

In addition to the “classic” Muriwai Beach and Ocean Beach in our favorite place Tairua has enchanted us on our great trip, especially a beach: Pakiri Beach on the East Coast, about nine kilometers north of Leigh or 86 kilometers north of Auckland.

What sounds like a stone’s throw, takes several hours to get there – the Gravel Roads, which lead Pakiri to the sea from the little town, are in truly terrible condition and scare the inexperienced Campervan driver with dust, tight bends, washboarding and nasty washouts. We do not want to imagine what’s going on these streets when the Pakiri Beach Holiday Park, with its many decent pitches and many nice bungalows, is once full and all arrive or depart at once.

But we also do not want to imagine what it would look like on Pakiri Beach if you would like to asphalt these gravel roads and thus ensure a comfortable arrival and departure. The status quo is actually perfect: in the visitors’ car park (of course with clean toilets, I think there were even showers!) You can see some rickety campervans from the surfers looking for the perfect wave; the campsite itself is in shimmering gone-fishing tranquility, a few families lie on the beach in the shadow of Pohutukawas, in the dunes poke endangered Fairy Terns.

And: There is deafening noise – from the truly gigantic breakers that make the stretch of beach to the right of the visitor’s parking lot to the surfers’ sky, but effectively deter any swimmer. Bathing in the open sea is here an impossibility; You can see that at the latest when you have seen that the surfers here are wearing helmets (!) and that the locals fish from the beach with gigantically long lines for sharks (!).

The fact that the extremely wide sandy beach is still suitable for children ensures that the Poutawa river, which opens into the sea, is here. It flows with considerable speed and thereby digs a considerable ditch in the dunes, before it drips quite flat and innocent in the more than 100 meters wide sandy beach.

Innocent splashing for babies is not here; but funny, by parents assisted (!) Flow swimming! Pakiri Beach is so remote that there are no lifeguards here; that provides for the desired idyll, but means for you: Please be careful!!

A second reason why children are more than welcome here is the Pakiri Beach Holiday Park. Sanitary rooms and kitchen buildings were good average, but nothing special (five minutes showers cost 50 cents, kitchen appliances are plentiful, but no cookware!); In the camping place you can buy (except for beer) everything you need for cooking and playing on the beach.

The comparatively high price and the cool management are criticized everywhere; we did not find any complaints. For a powered site with two children, we paid NZ $ 45 during the low season.

The unique feature of the place is its playground: Here there are not only slides, swings & Co., but also and above all, several small playhouses – with games kitchen, play living room and so on. For the adults there is … table tennis!!

Our kids could not decide what they wanted: the beach or the playground? Since the latter is fenced on the grounds of the campsite, you can leave the lodge with a clear conscience for a while and even roam a little in the dunes – without stepping on the Fairy Terns, bitteschön.

That one seems to see the entire universe at night on the beach is nothing special for New Zealand; here we have even seen a shooting star … but what we have wished, we must not betray ;-)

Tip: North of Pakiri, Freedom Camping is also allowed on Te Arai Point! You can find even more Freedom Camping spots nearby in our detailed download lists.

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Christina Cherry
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