Auckland

Shakespear Regional Park

Flop on the beach with a good book or walk across farmland and through native bush to panoramic views of the Hauraki Gulf and islands.

Situated at the end of a narrow peninsula, Shakespear Regional Park offers sweeping cliff top views and a beach along either side.

Te Haruhi Bay has the largest and most popular beach. Wide grassed areas studded with large, shady trees lead down to the water's edge It's a perfect place to spread a rug and relax with a book.

If you're feeling more energetic there are several walking trails to discover. The Heritage Trail passes through native forest, wetlands and farmland to reach historic sites including a World War II gun emplacement. The Tiri Tiri Track takes you from Te Haruhi Bay along the beach and past an old Maori settlement before following the cliff line to views of Tiritiri Matangi Island wildlife sanctuary. Native birds from the sanctuary have begun migrating across to the regenerating native forest in the park.

A tent camping ground at Te Haruhi Bay can be booked by contacting the Auckland Regional Council. There are also a few motorhome sites available. Shakespear Regional Park is about 40 minutes drive north of central Auckland.