Small? Yes. Mighty? Most certainly. The little coastal community of Te Ārai has the remote feel of its Northland neighbours, yet is indeed park of the wider Auckland region. The little hamlet is perched along the Auckland-Northland border, located just south of Mangawhai and Bream Bay.
For those who love the water, Te Ārai Regional Park is a must-visit destination. Surfing enthusiasts come for the epic swells, but the park has something for everyone, from swimmers to walkers to campers. Soak up the sun on warm, white sand or take a refreshing dip in the sea after admiring the headland views at Te Ārai Point. Don't miss the old quarry-hole lagoon, a picturesque swimming spot where you can jump from the cliff into the deep waters or scramble over rocks to the top of the hill.
Adventurers will enjoy exploring further south, teetering over rock formations and around hidden coves all the way to Pākiri Beach. If you're up for a challenge, try your hand at fishing for kingfish in the waters around Te Ārai Point or take a surf lesson or paddle-boarding session through Aotearoa Surf.
If you're looking for a unique place to stay, check out the eco-pods or teepees offered by Aotearoa Surf. And for golf enthusiasts, Te Ārai Links is a premium golf course with 36 holes, luxury accommodation, and breathtaking coastal views.
Don't forget to take a day trip to nearby Mangawhai or Goat Island, where you can enjoy clifftop walks or snorkel with colorful fish at Goat Island Marine Reserve. There's so much to see and do in the Te Ārai area, so make sure to plan ahead and soak up all the beauty this charming community has to offer.
Location Te wāhi
Te ĀraiPlan your route
Getting there Te huarahi ki reira
Te Ārai is just over an hours’ drive from downtown Auckland, and 30 minutes from Matakana.
Local tip He tīwhiri mō te rohe
Be sure to visit the small shell cove to find a floor completely covered in shells. Find it just south of the Te Ārai Regional Park lagoon.