Go Sand Surfing At Te Paki
Sand surfing is becoming all the rage with people of all ages trying this new exciting activity.
The dunes themselves have kindly provided the "grades" allowing for babies, beginners and adrenaline junkies to try their hand.
You can hire the sand boards by the dunes themselves for a reasonable cost - see the website below for details.
- Adventure Travel
Bird Spotting and Lessons To Learn
There are many species of birds found out on the Tohe. Some of them are:
Little blue penguins
New Zealand dotterel
If you are walking along and you see flocks of birds down at the water's edge and some are flying straight up, hovering then flying back down they are doing this so they can break the shell of tuatua, a shellfish that is found out on the Tohe.
So go over to where the birds are - they will fly away, and with your bare feet wriggle them back and forth - you will be able to find tuatua this way!
Read more: http://members.virtualtourist.com/m/tt/c07be/#ixzz20xYSMBf9
Te Araroa - The Long Pathway Walk
On the 3rd December 2011, Te Araroa which is a 3000km walking trail stretching from the cape to the Bluff was opened. The Tohe, or 90 mile beach forms part of this walkway.
I have detailed in my travelogue Te Araroa - The Long Pathway 2 - Down the Tohe the route and the main stop points, as well as where you can find camping and accommodation.
I also have written another travelogue Te Araroa - What You Can See Down The Tohe which tells you what you can see while you are walking along the Tohe.
You need to be self sufficient and carry water with you.
- Hiking and Walking
Hukatere - Panoramic Views
From the top of the Hukatere hill you have panoramic views of the tohe. Looking south you can see the southern end, looking north the Tohe disapears into the horizon with no end in sight.
You can not drive up Hukatere as the road is impossible, but it is not a long walk and well worth it.
The first photo is Hukatere, the second one is looking south and the third one is looking straight out.
You can also take a series of photos that will join up.
- Road Trip
- Adventure Travel
Things That Locals Do
Here is a list of the main things that the locals do on the Tohe (90 mile beach).
Camping, surfcasting, picking tuatua (shellfish), dragging for flounder or mullet (depending on season and tides), surfing at the southern end, and of course using the Tohe as our main highway - but only try that when you have read and understand all of the transportation tips :-)
Picking Tuatua for Your Tea
Tuatua are a shellfish found along the Tohe before the low tide mark. Always pick on the outgoing tide because if you pick on the turn or the incoming, you may find alot of sand in the tuatua.
About 1 hour before the low tide go into the water with bare feet until it is about half way up your calves. You may have to go quite a way out. Stand on your toes and twist your feet so that they dig into the sand. You will be able to feel the tuatua under your feet if you are in the right place. Only take the big ones, at least 40mm / 1 inch long. If you get babies, (smaller ones) push them back into the sand and leave them for another day.
- Adventure Travel
Hiking and Camping
Hiking up the Tohe is easy as long as the westerly wind coming in from the sea is not too strong. There are also great places to camp in the dunes along the way - you must take all of your camping gear with you if you are going to do this. Always walk over the dunes to find a camping spot - never camp on the Tohe proper in case there is a king tide that night.
- Hiking and Walking
Watch a Sunset
Sunset can be spectacular out on the Tohe (90 mile beach) as when the sun drops below the horizon, it sinks into the sea.
The best sunsets are on the days where there is not much cloud. The best place to see the sunsets are on the Tohe proper, and not at the southern end as then the effect ot the sun dropping into the sea right in front of you is not there.
Te Paki Reserve
We ended up here accidentally, as we were driven from our campingground by mozzies. We parked our car and fell asleep next to the Te Paki Stream. As we woke up we saw that we had parked next to some huge sand dunes to. It's fun climbing up and rolling down these giant sand dunes, just remember what direction you came from!
Ninety Mile Beach
You can get to this beach from various roads. If you've got a 4WD you can drive on it, otherwise there are tour driving it aswell. You can also do walks on Ninety Mile Beach, but you'll have to bring your own camping gear.
This is part of the tour. Bascially you get a surf board ( which is supplied), walk up the top of a mountain of sand, then lay on the baord and slide down it.
In our group the age group was alot older and thought they wouldn't take part -well I was wrong , which was great.
Hard work climbling up the sand though!
More pics in the Travelogues below
Dune- Rider 4X4 Tours
This is a excellent way to see 90 mile beach. We took the Cape Reinga Tour via 90 Mile Beach tour which includes:
*Visit giant Kauri trees at Puketi Forest
*4 Wheel drive along 90 Mile Beach
*Dig for Tuatuas (shellfish)
*Drive along Te Paki quicksand stream
*Boogie board down huge sand dunes ( This is great fun )
*Visit Cape Reinga Lighthouse ( This is amazing - great views)
*Swim, collect shells or just relax on a beautiful sandy beach
*Visit Awanui Ancient Kauri Kingdom - You can get some nice gifts here
*Stop at famous Mangonui Fish & Chip Shop - this is the best fish and chips I have ever had, went back again a few days later.
All along the coast you will get to take some great photos. There is just so much to see, just take heaps of film. At the end of ninety mile beach you will find Cape Regina, the furtherst tip of the North Island, they say on a good day you can see the two ocean met....
Awanui Ancient Kauri Kingdom
This is Handcrafted furniture, art, crafts and gifts from the oldest workable timber in the world.
The picture attached is a staircase carved out of a tree.