Free Beaches - Auckland

St Leonards Beach

Just before Takapuna - this used to be a great beach but now has a reputation for bad behaviour.

Ladies Bay

Ladies Bay used to be probably the most popular of the Auckland urban options - despite a council-built viewing platform over the beach. Of great concern to genuine naturists is the reputation for bad behaviour there so it is no longer recommended.

Pohutukawa Bay

At the northern end of the popular Long Bay reserve is a marked cliff walk, which goes past this spot. There used to be a sign here, recognising it as a clothes-optional area. 

Orpheus Bay

This modest, south-facing stretch of sand is not far from the mouth of the Manakau Harbour. Access is via the obscure Con Bryan Track, entered about half way along, on the right of the short road to the look-out, near Huia. Don't sit under the cliff at the far end because bits of it often fall off there.

Parakai Springs

This spa is at 150 Parkhurst Road, Parakai, near Hellensville. Skinny-dippers are welcomed on the first and third Friday of each month (10am to 10pm). The private area is only comfortable for about 25 people, so booking is a good idea. (FBNZ members can get a 25% discount, on showing their membership card.)

Palm Springs Mineral Hot Pools

This spa is also at Parakai, near Hellensville. A skinny-dippers' night  occurs (courtesy of Auckland Naturist Orewa) on the last Saturday of each month (except December and January), from 6pm to 12pm. There are several spas as well as two big pools. This is a popular destination for family groups. Also available is a range of snacks and meals from the fully equipped, licensed restaurant.

Herne Bay

Only about three kilometres from Ponsonby, this is not a big beach but usually there are a few people on it, despite its proximity to the CBD.

Murawai North

On the way to Helensville from Auckland, at the end of Rimmers Road, is a long, west coast beach. It can be a bit bleak at times, but even on a busy day, there's plenty of room.

Mokoroa Falls

The falls are (geographically) half way between the settlement of Murawai Beach, and Waitakere Village (township) in the west of Auckland. (To drive nearest to here, go via Wairere Rd, then Horsman Rd to the end.) Walk for 30 minutes on the well-marked track. There are several walking tracks to try, including one along the stream. 

Bethells Beach

Bethells has the car park behind it. Skinny-dippers tend to go either to the south or north over the saddle to O'Neills - (see next). 

O'Neills Beach

Getting to this beach needs that extra trek over the saddle: possibly heavy-going for small children. On top of that, there could also be a bit of a wade if you're there within an hour of high tide.

Karekare Beach

Turn left about 15km along Piha Rd to go to Karekare instead of Piha. There are a number of walking tracks behind the West Coast beaches, some of which go by pretty lakes and streams. 

North Piha Beach

At the bottom of Piha Rd turn right and go to the last car park to the north. The track over the point to Whites Beach starts near here. (Note that ex-Mayor Bob Harvey welcomes clothes-optional use of Piha...) 

Whites Beach

The usual way to get here is via the track over the point at the northern end of Piha Beach - about a 30 min walk.

Mellons Bay

This one is reasonably easy to find, being not too far from the Howick shopping area. The spot used though, is a good walk to the right from the main beach and parking area. Since the council removed a shielding Pohutukawa log some years ago, there seems to have been a slow decline in usage...


On the east coast, apart from Ladies and Mellons Bays, one has to venture about 15 to 20 km further east, past Clevedon to find Waitawa and Tawhitokino. 

Kariotahi Beach

This beach lies to the south of Manakau Harbour entrance. It is 'the home' of local identity Bill Shelly, who, until recently, walked naked for a couple of hours each fine day here. The nearest town, Waiuku, is only 8 km away.

Hamiltons Gap

West of Pollock, well up the Awhitu peninsula toward the entrance of Manukau Harbour; this is another west coast iron-sand beach - and you can drive on it. Quite isolated for a place so close to Auckland

Awhitu Reserve

The ARC reserve is almost opposite Hamiltons Gap, on the eastern side of the Awhitu Peninsula. It's normally pretty quiet here; plenty of room, and views across the Manukau Harbour.