So you’re keen to try your hand at setting up camp across the country this year? Us too. But, while there’s those who’ve been camping since they were a Boy Scout, the extent of many of our experiences includes setting up a tent at Rhythm and Vines and leaving said tent behind at the end of the New Years.
Never fear, we are here! We’ve come up with a list of places around Aotearoa that are perfect for rookies. Go forth and enjoy!
Mount Maunganui Beachside Holiday Park
This is obviously high on our list, because not only is Mount Maunganui one of our all time fave spots to visit come summer, but because the campground is in a prime location. Located next to the hot pools, just down from the beach and beneath the mountain, it’s also across the road from the country’s best fro-yo shops. We pretty much guarantee that you are getting the best bang for your buck. And, if you decide mid-holiday that camping isn’t quite for you, there are plenty of hotels nearby to book into.
Pakiri Beach Holiday Park
This laidback holiday park is perfect for those wanting an escape not too far from Auckland. The 90-minute drive will have you situated along the white sand and tranquil waters of Pakiri beach. If the camping gets too much, take a trip down to Matakana, where you’ll find an abundance of activities.
Taupo Bay Holiday Park
If you’re looking for a place to have your next surf trip, then head to Taupo Bay. It’s a hidden treasure we’re letting you in on, a little off the beaten track, but well worth the adventure. Spend your days making friends with the locals and find more secret spots among this little gem.
Whangapoua Holiday Park
Whangapoua Holiday Park is the closest thing you’ll get to camping beachside at New Chums. If you haven’t heard, it’s the Coromandel’s most sought after spot, and rated as one of the top 20 beaches in the world! The newly established holiday park makes it a popular place for rookies, with modern kitchen, toilet and shower facilities. And, if you want to be a bit fancy there are renovated cabins for hire.
Te Anau Holiday Park
This South Island holiday park is one of those breathtaking spots that makes you appreciate living in New Zealand. Located on the idyllic shore of Lake Te Anau, the tranquil campsite really is one of the best. Explore the glow worm caves, the cascading Oneroa Falls and the nearby Fiordland National Park.
Kai Iwi Lakes
Mix it up from the classic beachside camping and set up your tent lakeside at Kai Iwi Lakes. With a basic site set amongst the trees, it’s the closest thing you’ll get to camping lakeside like the American’s do— minus the bears.
Raglan Holiday Park
For Auckland dwellers who don’t want to fall to far from the nest, Raglan is your best bet. This chilled out surfer town is the perfect place to park up for the weekend. With some of the best surf spots around, you can book in a surf lesson or be zen with a yoga class at Solscape.
Hot Water Beach
Come summer Hot Water Beach will be packed with tourists, flocking to feel the infamous hot water on their skin. Hot Water Beach Top 10 Holiday Park is ideal for those who are new to the camping scene. With its fantastic reputation and prime location to hang out in the Coromandel, there really is no going wrong here.
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Image credit: Hamilton Waikato