One of the best things about Auckland it’s in such close proximity to some of the most beautiful beaches, cutest towns, red wood and Kauri forests and more! This is exactly what makes the big smoke a perfect base to explore the North Island! So if you fancy a little getaway but don’t have that much time off here are our tested and true mini road trips that will will have all of your friends going #travelgoals.
Drive under an hour to this little paradise on an isolated Eastern Peninsula. This is an Aucklander’s favourite destination for a little R&R and who can blame them? Complete with white sand beaches and rolling pastures. There are even a couple vineyards on the wayso you can have a bottle… or five! Treat yo’self.
Gannet Population at Muriwai Beach
You don’t even need to go more than 30 minutes outside of Central Auckland to find a little place to unwind. Visit one of Auckland’s finest black that’s popular with surfers. If you get bored watching the wild waters of the west coast and some of Auckland’s finest surfers – you can take a short hike to admire the area’s impressive gannet population.
Want to go to an even more desolate beach? Try going to Karekare and you’ll nearly have the whole beach to yourself. Oh baby.
Brick Bay Vineyard, Matakana
How underrated is Matakana? Heaps of vineyards, a lovely little river flowing through the centre and the sweetest little city center filled with chic gastropubs make it a favourite among our friends. If you’re lucky enough to be out on the weekend hit up it’s farmers market and buy some locally sourced produce!
Finished there earlier than you thought? Take a short drive over to Goat Island Marine Reserve and enjoy some of clearest snorkeling and diving conditions in the North Island. Or if you want to try something new try the Clearyak – a clear, glass kayak that allows you to see all of the marine life below.
Bridal’s Veil Falls, Raglan
A surfers paradise. This little seaside town explodes a hollistic, hippy lifestyle. Have a little surf at one of the black sand beaches, go for a cheeky hike up Mountain Karioi or check out the resident waterfall Bridal Veil Falls. You’ll leave a zenned out, surfer dude, yogi master – what more could you want?
Mermaid Pools, Matapouri Beach
EVERYONE goes to Paihia but Whangarei is a less popular destination. This is a crying shame because it’s definitely one of the Northland’s hidden gems. The city center has a waterfall in the middle of the city center – no big deal – and it’s super close to amazing beaches. Our favourite? Matapouri beach. It’s a really nice beach but, more importantly, it has crystal clear rock pools where you can pretend to be a mermaid.