Taranaki

LOCATIONS

Taranaki has 105 kilometres of world famous coast line. This spectacular coast line is followed by Surf Highway 45. Surf Highway 45 gives access to untold amounts of amazing windsurfing locations. The Taranaki Peninsular has 180 degrees of coast line allowing for amazing cross-off shore windsurfing in any conditions. World class port and starboard tack down the line wave sailing is on offer.

The Taranaki Wave Classic is held at 4 possible locations, this gives us the best chance of finding some good conditions somewhere along the coastline.

All sailing spots in Taranaki require fronts to generate the wind needed. The swells are generally created in the Southern Ocean and travel unhindered for thousands of miles before hitting the Taranaki Peninsula. The shape of the coast provides sailing locations that are both sheltered and extremely exposed to these swells.

The best time to travel through Taranaki is from spring to autumn. This time makes the most of swells generated in the Southern Ocean and frontal wind. Winter does provide the biggest swell but can be cold and more unsettled. The region also has a large volcanic mountain centred above the river plains. The mountain provides localised weather patterns that help accelerate wind in certain locations.

 

Waitara

windsurfing waitara taranaki

Cross-Off Wind Direction: WSW
Sailable winds: SW-WNW
Sailing Level: Beginner to Experienced
Tide: Mid – Low
Tack: Port Tack Jumping and Wave Riding
Bottom Type: Left Hand Reef Break

15 mins North of New Plymouth

Just north of New Plymouth, Waitara is best sailed at mid to low tide. It has some good easy waves on the outside reefs, the inside is flat and easy to get out through. Waitara provides the best port tack jumping in Taranaki. Rides can be in excess of 500 metres. This spot gets good sea breazes and generally more wind than Weld Rd. Waitara also provides amazing freestyle conditions.

Weld Rd / Ahu Ahu Rd

windsurfing ahu ahu road taranaki

Cross-Off Wind Direction: WSW
Sailable winds: SW-W
Sailing Level: Beginner to Experienced
Tide: Mid – High
Tack: Port Tack Jumping and Wave Riding
Bottom Type: Left Hand Reef Break

5 mins south of Oakura

Weld Road and Ahu AHu road lead to different ends of the same bay. It’s one of the most “fun” sailing spot on the coast according to many of the locals. Smooth water on the inside for good speed and easy gybing with well defined reefs for both fun wave riding and jumping. An easy launch makes it suitable for all levels, but watch out for the boulders (some the size of cars) bursting through the waves. Mid to high tide makes access easier. On its day it can have some of the best wavesailing anywhere on the planet.

Kina Rd South Break

kina road south break windsurfing

Cross-Off Wind Direction: SE
Sailable winds: S-SE
Sailing Level: Average to Experienced Sailors
Tide: Mid – High Tide
Tack: Port Tack Jumping and Wave Riding
Bottom Type: Left Hand Reef Break

30 mins south of Oakura

Kina Road South Break is a large quality wave. The wave does not have the length of ride as Pungarehu but makes up for that with power. The wave is a large peak the peels into a deep channel. This provides amazing wave riding and jumping. The wave provides up to four quality turns or aerials. The break has consistent wind right through to the inside. Kina South Break is exposed so is the south east is stronger than 30 knots Punagarehu is preferred by the locals. Kina Road South Break is a swell magnet. If Pungarehu is flat Kina Road will still have up to half mast sets. This spot will provide the best waves of your life with large super clean over mast high wave bowling down the reef.

Kina Rd North Break

kina road windsurfing

Cross-Off Wind Direction: N
Sailable winds: NW – N
Sailing Level: Average to Experienced Sailors
Tide: All Tides
Tack: Starboard Jumping and Wave Riding
Bottom Type: Right Hand Reef Break

30 mins south of Oakura

Kina usually has consistent winds which makes it an easy sail and good for jumping. The wave riding is amazing. Kina north break can hold any size swell. Big waves come from reasonable deep water onto this well defined break. Creating world class Starboard tack wave riding. The quality of Kina Rd north break compares to Hookipa in Hawaii. Except the ride is longer and a crowded day has 10 people. This break is quite exposed so is best the first day of a Northerly blow. There is easy launching on sand and the waves break on two reefs on either side of the bay, with the best waves at mid to high tide. It is an all round spot for jumping and riding if the wind is light or from the NW. Kina goes off !

Pungarehu

windsurfing pungarehu taranaki nz

Cross-Off Wind Direction: SE
Sailable winds: S-SE
Sailing Level: Average to Experienced Sailors
Tide: All Tides
Tack: Port Tack Jumping and Wave Riding
Bottom Type: Left Hand Reef Break

25 mins south Oakura

The spot is said to have the best windsurfing wave in the world. You can get long down-the-line rides on big smooth walls. This is one of the few hard core spots on the coast and is a great place to see the best at play. At Pungarehu the down-the-line wave riding in cross offshore winds is fast and furious. The swell walls up regularly, often easily over mast high as this is the most western and exposed point. A good shoulder peels beautifully across a face with a peaky lip or two for aerials. Riding here is as good as it gets, but don’t expect much jumping. Getting 15 turns on one wave is not uncommon. This break can handle any size swell. The launch is over boulders, which quickly toughens your feet up at low tide. This tends to keep the crowds away and it’s rare for more than ten sailors to be out here. Once out there the waves, although monstrous, are clean and easy for anyone who’s got the nerve. At high tide it’s all somewhat easier, and certainly not beyond the average wave-sailor’s capability. The wind can be quite offshore and gusty on the inside of the break.

Other Taranaki Sailing Locations

 

Boulders

boulders
Cross-Off Wind Direction: S
Sailable winds: W- S
Sailing Level: Beginner to Experienced
Tide: Mid – High
Tack: Port Tack Jumping and Wave Riding
Bottom Type: Left Hand Reef Break

0 mins from of New Plymouth

Situated right in the heart of New Plymouth is this great little sailing break. Boulders is located on the southern end of the Famous Coastal Walkway. Not the same quality wave as Waitara or Weld Road but provides a high tide sailing location for New Plymouth sailors. This location can be sailed in a wide range of conditions making it a favourite with local sailors. Boulders has plenty of rigging a space and parking with play area and picnic facilities.

The Port

windsurfing in taranaki
Sailable winds: W- NE
Sailing Level: Beginner
Tide: All Tides
Bottom Type: Sandy Shore

0 mins from of New Plymouth

 

The port is a harbour providing a safe learning location for beginners. The port is enclosed on all sides with only a small opening. The port has a nice flat sandy beach for launching and has ample parking and rigging areas.

Secret Spots

spotX
Cross-Off Wind Direction: ?
Sailable winds: ?
Sailing Level: Awesome
Tide: ?
Bottom Type: Rocks n Sand n Reef

? mins from of New Plymouth

 

These spots can go off on their day! Where they are is known only to a select few that know the secret handshakes 😉