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Whangamata Beach

Whangamata Beach is one of the Coromandel's most well known locations. During the height of summer there are literally thousands of people in and around the water keeping Whangamata Lifeguards very busy. The beach can be good for surfing during large swells. The beach is generally safe but swimmers are advised to stay away from the northern and southern ends of the beach. If in doubt ask the Lifeguards (there will usually be someone at the Surf Life Saving Club).

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Family friendly

This beach is well suited for families, make sure your family is prepared for the beach conditions, the beach is patrolled by Surf Lifeguards during the summer months.


Swimming is very popular with thousands of people swimming on any one day during the height of the summer. The beach is generally safe and usually has small gentle waves. Whangamata does however get large swells on a regular basis during the summer and can be dangerous, especially considering that there are great numbers of tourists in the area. Of particular concern is the harbour entrance, around the river mouth and around the Islands where strong rips are commonly present. Whangamata Surf Life Saving Club is located centrally on the beach and this is by far the safest area for swimming.


Whangamata Beach break can provide good waves from time to time but the best waves are located at the northern end around the harbour entrance. This wave is called the Whanga Bar and it has excellent left-hand waves when the swell is large enough. Unfortunately the wave is generally crowded when it is worth surfing.


The harbour mouth and river mouth will usually have anglers present. The Whangamata Wharf is a popular spot all year round for ocean fishing. Boats can be launched from the Whangamata Harbour at the northern end of the beach.

Activities and facilities


  • Canoeing/kayaking
  • Dog walking
  • Scuba diving
  • Shell fish gathering
  • Wind/kite surfing


  • Car parking
  • Changing facilities
  • Food and beverage kiosk
  • Playground
  • Public toilets
  • Shower


The beach is our favourite playground, but it can also be a dangerous place. Learn about the hazards at Whangamata Beach and be prepared so you and your family can enjoy the sun, sea and sand safely this summer.



Patrolled Beach
Whangamata Beach is a patrolled beach.
Stay safe - swim beween the flags.

Forecast provided by SwellMap.com

Cloud with possible showers
Max Temp.
Water Temp.

Water Conditions

For boating and surfing
Poor. 1/10
Poor. 1/10



Safety at Whangamata Beach

We want you to have a great time whilst visiting Whangamata Beach. But take a moment to learn more about being safe on New Zealand Beaches. More ►

Patrolled Beach

Patrolled Beach
Whangamata Beach is a patrolled beach.
Stay safe - swim beween the flags.

Patrol Hours

Whangamata Beach is NOT CURRENTLY patrolled by Surf Lifeguards in Winter months. In an emergency call 111 and ask for Police assistance. Surf Lifeguard patrols will resume in October 2021.


Click a safety symbol for more information on the risk

4 simple rules to keep you safe

We want you to have a great time whilst visiting Whangamata Beach. But take a moment to learn more about being safe on New Zealand beaches and looking out for each other. More ►

The Water Safety Code:

  • Be prepared
  • Watch out for yourself and others
  • Be aware of the dangers
  • Know your limits
DIAL 111 in the event of an emergency


Whangamata Beach is located 86 kilometres north of Tauranga. The beach is 4000 metres in length and faces towards the northeast, at its central point is Whangamata Surf Life Saving Club. The beach is a unique set up. At the northern end there is a harbour inlet (Whangamata Harbour). The central beach area has a large curve in it. Located just slightly south of the Surf Life Saving Club is Hauturu Island and a few other smaller islands and large rocks. Continue to the southern most point on the beach and you reach Otahu River mouth that runs along the small headland. Whangamata Beach is golden sand and is very appealing to the eye. It has a well established permanent population and this increases greatly over the summer months with holiday makers and tourists boosting the population of Coromandel beaches.

Public Transport

Bus: NO only bus stop outside Thames Coromandel


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Beach Water Quality

Many councils provide the results of their weekly monitoring. This lets people know what the most recent bacteria levels were. Remember, even sites with low risk can be unsuitable to swim at from time to time and we recommend that you avoid swimming for 48 hours after heavy rainfall.

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