A keen surfer? You’ve found the right spot! People come from all over to surf in Kaikōura.
A popular surf break is Mangamaunu, located along the coast on State Highway 1 north of Kaikōura township. Breaking over a boulder bottom, this is a great spot for intermediate to expert level surfers. It is a long, righthand pointbreak perched right next to Kaikōura mountain Ranges. The views of the snow-capped mountains in the cooler months are not to be missed! Fun, 200m + rides are the norm. A well-known popular spot, but not to worry if crowds aren’t your thing other breaks peel close by!
Kahutara is a few kilometres south of the Kaikōura township, located in front of the Kahutara river and bridge. A righthand river mouth/point break, recommended at its best through the colder winter months. Usually a lot heavier than Mangamaunu and broken boards are common. Powerful waves, dangerous shore break and popular with local surfers makes this place one to respect. Recommended for confident surfers only, not for learners.
Meatworks - The most consistent break in Kaikōura that works on most swell directions. Located north of the township it known to have fun, punchy A-frames, depending on the swell direction, breaking over a boulder bottom. A popular spot for locals and tourists alike, with camping options close by. Great spot for intermediate to expert surfers.
Graveyards - One of the easier waves to surf in Kaikōura. Again, located north of Kaikōura, this spot is named after the cemetery on the Kiwa Rd corner. The key is to surf it over low tide. Good for learners to advanced surfers. A softer wave than Meatworks down the road with more room to spread out and an easier exit and entry than most other breaks in the area.
Gooches Beach - A great kid friendly, learner wave. Located down the Esplanade in Kaikōura township, it is sheltered form the larger open ocean swell. Breaking over sand and rock boil-ups is a run, crumbly left and right closeout that rarely gets big..
Okiwi Bay - If you are keen to surf Kaikōura but can’t handle the rocks another 10 minutes past Mangamaunu is a little bay called Okiwi. The locals call it sandy bay, not all sand but on the low tide it is breaking on a sand bar 100 meters out. The cool thing about Okiwi is it’s off shore in a North East wind, nothing else in Kaikōura is. So in the summer months when the on shore is howling check this place out. Best on the low tide.
Oaro Beach – Another spot to check out for those who prefer a sand bottom. When travelling south out of Kaikōura, Oaro is located just before you head into the Hundalees. Depending on the swell direction, you will find various fun left and right banks. Good for surfers of all levels.
Spot X – Keep your eye out for some other lesser known spots. You might be pleasantly surprised…
Kaikoura’s coastline is made of rock, so it can be hard getting in and out through the rocks. Most surf beaches in Kaikōura are better on the low to mid, but things can work if other factors are in play so if in doubt check it out or see the team at Coastal Sports. Rips in the Kaikōura surf beaches are there in the wrong conditions, so be aware and take care. Kaikōura is a great place to surf, but keep your wits about you, and take care out there!
Keen to hire a Surfboard Coastal Sports have surf hire available all year round
Keen to learn to surf, check out Kiwi Surf experience . This company are a surfing family owned & operated business that offer qualified professional instructors in a safe & fun environment.
Information has been externally sourced, it is advised all surfers undertake their own research on surfing locations.