Set against a backdrop of native forest park, the welcoming surf town of Whangamatā is a place to catch a wave, a fish or enjoy a delicious cafe meal.
The attractive combination of sand, surf and native forest makes Whangamatā a popular destination for summer holidays. It's easy to find your own space on the four kilometre ocean beach, surf the rolling breaks, or swim in the quiet waters of the harbour. There are two golf courses in the area and plenty of charter boats waiting to take you diving or game fishing. Offshore, Hauturu Island can be reached by kayak or wading at low tide.
Just behind the town, the Coromandel Forest Park is a place for hiking, mountain biking and hunting. The Wentworth Falls walk is particularly lovely.
Onemana Beach, made famous in Middle‑earth advertising, is only six kilometres north of Whangamatā and is the perfect spot for swimming and snorkelling.
Whangamatā is a great base for exploring The Coromandel, with numerous cafés, restaurants and accommodation options (be sure to book ahead in summer). Arts and crafts shops provide interesting browsing, and surf shops cluster along the main road with boards for hire.