If you can, drive out to the lookout on Te Karaka Point, to the north of Whangamata.
Head North out of Whangamata on Hwy 25 and turn right at the signpost to Onemana. Drive up to the crest of the rise, and directly there on the right is the entrance to the forestry area and the peninsular.
Sometimes this forestry gate is locked, but if open you can drive out to Te Karaka Point to look out over Whangamata. The views, when you get out there are wonderful and well worth the effort.
The road is not sealed and can sometimes be muddy and difficult. However I just drove out in a sedan car with no 4WD, just as long as your car is not too lowly slung. That is those boy racer cars wouldn't like this road.
Fondest memory: You can view some of the coastal islands, some of the coastline itself, and back over the town, the harbour and the estuary. You can see the surfers as well, from a birdseye view. Rather interesting.
That's me visiting my friends' private beach. That is, no one can get access from land, but it is allowable to land here from the sea.
The trees here are Pohutukawas, which are known as our Christmas Tree. They flower at Christmas and are a beautiful bright red colour. The specimens here at this beach are very old over 100 years.
Favorite thing: Remember when you stand on the beach and look out to the distance, that the next stop is right across the Pacific to Chile!! There are a few Pacific Islands but further north than here. So, as the crow flies, there is no land until Chile. For some reason I always think of that when I look out.
At the north end of the surf beach is the entrance to the harbour. This is a fun place to spend some time. Fishing is popular from the beach or wharf. The water is very deep here.
Fondest memory: I love to see what the tide has washed ashore, shells, driftwood and stuff.
The fishing club has a prime spot near the edge of the water, at the entrance to the harbour. The water gets deep here very quickly and is a great place to swim. Take care of the rip though, especially when the tide is turning.
You can arrange fishing trips here to blue water areas for marlin etc.
Fondest memory: This is also a very nice club to dine at, however you need to be signed in by a member, so be sure to meet one while you are at Whangamata.