Wake up in a park
Beach-side baches, holiday parks, remote campsites and campervan sites in Auckland Council parks are all popular and affordable summer escapes for you and your family to enjoy.
- Book a bach - classic country and beach-front baches are a great way to extend your stay in a regional park.
- Camp under canvas - for a remote or back-to-basics camping experience, pitch your tent and explore a regional park on your doorstep. Be among the first to spend a summer break at Ātiu Creek Regional Park’s new campground. You can even bring your horse and trek across this 847ha countryside park on Kaipara Harbour.
- Rev up the RV - book spot at a designated campervan campground (for vehicles with self-containment certificates).
- Hit a holiday park - in the north, you can choose from Orewa, Martins Bay or Whangateau holiday parks, or the Shelly Beach Camping Ground on Kaipara Harbour.
Bookings are essential and popular sites fill up fast, so get in quick or start thinking about autumn escapes now. Call 09 301 0101 to make a booking or visit the accommodation and bookings section of our website.
Vine House, Mahurangi Regional Park
Play in a park
Bright colours, imaginative equipment and good fun are on offer at our region’s playgrounds and play spaces. Here are a few highlights:
- The Variety - The Children’s Charity Playground at Long Bay Regional Park is delighting kids of all abilities with in-ground trampolines, a wavy path with rumbles and judders, musical instruments and a giant hammock.
- Victoria Park Skate Park in central Auckland features a bowl, a BMX jump box, a mini ramp, steps and two quarter pipes. It is suitable for beginners, as well as advanced and competition-level skaters and BMX riders.
- Tree Tops Play Space at Tui Glen Reserve in Henderson includes three large towers and an eagle’s nest climbing structure that takes you to eye level with the surrounding trees before you speed down a long tunnel slide.
- Omana Regional Park playground in Maraetai features traditional Māori artwork, buried fossils to discover, swinging bars decorated with mythical Māori creatures, a whare (house) and a magnificent pou whenua (carved pole) that children can climb.
Find a park near you.
Tree Tops Play Space, Tui Glen Reserve, Henderson
Experience our special environment and native species
The Auckland region is home to many treasured native species and unique environments. Together with community and volunteer groups, Auckland Council protects habitats and restores ecosystems to ensure these species survive. Dogs are prohibited in most of these sanctuary areas.
Tahuna Torea is a unique wildlife sanctuary that extends out into the Tāmaki Estuary. A mix of bushy areas, saltwater wetlands, mudflats and walking trails, Tahuna Torea is home to herons, godwits, pukeko, stilts and kingfishers. The best time to view wading birds is between high tide and half tide from November to March.
Open sanctuaries at Shakespear and Tāwharanui regional parks provide a pest-free haven for native species and a place for visitors to swim, camp, mountain bike and snorkel. Campers at Tāwharanui can also listen out for resident kiwi calling across the valleys.
Tawharanui Regional Park
A new predator-proof fence across Omaha Spit provides protection for endangered New Zealand dotterel. You can still visit, but keep a safe distance from nesting birds.
Auckland Council, Watercare and the Māngere community have been working together for some years to safeguard and monitor roosting islands for shorebirds, including dotterels, on Manukau Harbour. Take the coastal pathway from Kiwi Esplanade in Māngere Bridge or Ambury Regional Park and keep a safe distance from roosting birds.
If birds aren’t your thing, drop into the Threatened Native Plants Garden at Auckland Botanic Gardens in Manurewa and check out some of the
plants that can only be found in this special New Zealand collection.
You and your pooch
Summer is a great time to get out with your dog and enjoy Auckland’s public spaces - but there are some restrictions about when and where you can do this.
Find out which beaches and parks are affected, and what the dog-access rules are. Signs are also posted at locations where restrictions apply.
Meanwhile, Auckland Council is about to adopt its new policy and bylaw on dogs, which will create a single set of rules and guidelines relating to dogs for the region.
The new rules are expected to come into effect from July 2013 - until then, the current rules apply. More information about the new rules will be available in an upcoming edition of OurAuckland, as well as on our website.
Take care on the rocks
Stay safe by following these simple safety tips if fishing off rock platforms, particularly on Auckland's west coast:
- wear a life jacket
- check the weather forecast
- never fish alone
- wear trainers, not gumboots
- never turn your back on the ocean
- in an emergency, call 111.
Keep kauri standing
Please help to prevent the spread of kauri dieback disease when you’re out and about in our parks this summer.
Remember to clean your shoes, tyres and other gear before and after visiting kauri forests, stay on designated tracks and keep off kauri roots. Look out for kauri protection zones in the Waitākere and Hunua ranges.
Visit the kauri dieback website or call 0800 NZ KAURI (0800 695 2874) for more information.