Tawharanui Regional Park - Auckland
For the best beach, head to Anchor Bay which is a great spot for picnics, surfing and scenic walks.
80 minutes drive north of the city, Tāwharanui Regional Park includes one of Auckland's best beaches. The 588 hectare park features green pastures, wetlands and a gorgeous white, sandy beach that attracts plenty of surfers.
The park is the country's first sanctuary combining farming, conservation and sanctuary. It's a a great place for picnics with gas barbecues allowed onto the grounds. Basic campsites are available just a short stroll from the beach but need to be booked in advance. Campervans can park up to two nights in the designated care parks.
If not venturing into the sea, there are plenty of walking trails on offer including:
Fisherman's Track - 30 minutes one way walk from Anchor Bay.
West End Track - 2 hours return from the hut at Anchor Bay with great views of the coastline.
Maori Bay Coastal Walk - 2 hours return from the Lagoon car park via Maori Bay and onto the South Coast Track.
Ecology Trail - 2 hours return from the hut at Anchor Bay via streams, wetlands, coastal wilderness and native bush.
North/South Coast Track - 3 hours return from either the Lagoon car park or the hut at Anchor Bay. The walk heads out to Tokatu Point to enjoy fantastic views of Kawau, Little Barrier and Great Barrier islands.