Muriwai Regional Park is a rugged coastline stretching 60 km north on Auckland’s west coast. It is one of NZ’s most spectacular black sand surf beaches.
There are multiple entry points along this 60km stretch, but the area most known as Muriwai beach is the southern end, where there are some great facilities.
This include B.B.Q’s, picnic tables, public toilets and cold showers (to rinse off all that black sand) in a number of sheltered grass areas beside the carparks. These are great facilities but unfortunately you can’t see the water from these areas due to the stunning dunes that take you down to the beach – rest assured you can hear the crashing waves.
A great café and shop (serving good sized ice-creams) are a walk from the beach, and there is a fantastic playground that features three slides, swings that really swing – climbing frames, and turning monkey bars.
Also at the southern end is Otakamiro Point which is the site of one of New Zeland’s few mainland Gannet breeding colonies. About 1,200 pairs of adult gannets nest here each summer and can be seen between August and March each year. The walking track from Muriwai is a not too difficult upward track that takes approximately 15 minutes. There is a nice wide viewing platform and from here you may also spot white fronted terns, blue penguins and fur seals. You can also walk through to Maori Bay from this point.
Review writen by: Elona Peterson
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Dog exercise: Dogs are allowed under control on a leash on the Muriwai Beach marginal strip and nearby Crown foreshore. Dogs are prohibited headland to headland on ONeill Bay.