Fodor's Expert Review Muriwai Beach
The black sand of Muriwai Beach is a must for those exploring the West Coast. Combine a trip here with a visit to any of the many wineries in the area. The beach is great for surfing, kitesurfing, walking, and swimming. It is a dangerous beach so don't venture into the water if the surf patrol is not operating, and always swim between the red and yellow flags. It is a great spot for a long, long walk and in summer it draws huge crowds. In winter you may be accompanied by wild winds, but it's still enjoyable if you're warmly dressed. Alternatively, get up-close-and-personal with the local gannet colony from the DOC viewing platforms; see the chicks in December and January. Amenities: food and drink; lifeguards in summer; parking; showers; toilets. Best for: sunset; walking; swimming.