Ship Creek Beach

Ship Creek Beach

The beach at Ship Creek is a beautiful surf beach, accessed directly from the car park, visitor centre and viewing tower. Walk along the boardwalk over the dunes, or take a short access track from the Dune Lake Walk. The beach is about 6 km long, measured by the distance to the Waita River mouth. So, there is plenty of room to stretch your legs. It is a short distance to the north end, where Ship Creek flows from the lagoon into the surf in front of Tauparikākā Point.

The beach is beautiful, with plenty of colourful stones and some driftwood. But the highlight is the high probability of seeing Hector dolphins (tutumairekurai) playing in the surf. It is one of the few places you can reliably see them without a boat; sure enough, they appeared for us. Unfortunately, they were not too interested in taking their photos, or I lacked the necessary perseverance!

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