Local Escapes

The Best Affordable Camping Spots In Auckland

By Ha-Young Kim

A tent pitched on a grassy beachfront with the sunset on the horizon.

You just can't beat the summertime. To help you make the most of the warmer weather, we’ve rounded up the best affordable campsites in Auckland. 

These spots range from $0 for two RV sites (yes, you read that right) to $20 per night, so you can explore the great outdoors no matter your budget. Now grab your mates, pack a tent and enjoy everything our beautiful country has to offer.

Tawharanui

Tawharanui Peninsula

Become one with nature and escape mobile reception along the east coast at Tawharanui Regional Park. The regional park is often visited by kiwis, dolphins, and stingrays to name a few friendly creatures and you can camp right amongst the excitement for only $16pp. What’s even better is Matakana Village is just up the road for when you need to restock the tent with some delish market treats.  

Te Haruhi Bay

Whangaparaoa Peninsula

You’re bound to catch breathtaking sunrises while pitched up at the eastern end of Te Haruhi Bay. Located in Shakespear Regional Park, this $16 pp campsite overlooks the beach and is surrounded by native plants and birdlife. The park is also the perfect spot for walking, mountain biking, watersports, fishing and has sheep and cattle on site. Need we say more?

Piha

Waitakere Ranges

Sitting right in the heart of Piha’s village is the Piha Domain Camp, a $15pp campsite to fully submerge yourself into breezy west coast life. The campsite has all the usual trimmings, as well as a tennis court, bowling green, and cooking site. But the best thing of all? The beach is a short two-minute walk from the campsite and a spread of delicious spots, including The Piha Cafe and the newly opened Brothers Beer & Juke Joint in the surf lifesavers club.

McCreadies Paddock

Karekare

McCreadies Paddock is a cosy spot in Waitakere that gives you access to the stunning beaches of the west coast. Go for a short drive to spend the day surfing at Piha or Karekare Beach, or it’s a 15-minute walk to visit a nearby waterfall. For $9 pp, you can’t get much better than that.

Peninsula Campground

Āwhitu 

Escape the city and set up your campsite on the headland overlooking the Manukau Harbour at Peninsula Campground. Located between Matakawau Beach and Brook Beach, you have your pick of sandy beach spots for a swim or enjoy walking, mountain biking or orienteering at the neighbouring Āwhitu Regional Park. This sweet campsite is $16 a night pp. 

Home Bay

Motutapu Island

A quiet, idyllic campsite located on the Home Bay beachfront, this spot is a bit harder to reach but well worth the effort if you’re looking for your own slice of paradise for just $10 pp. Expect gorgeous coastlines, native bush, thriving wildlife and WWII remains to explore. Who said you can’t go on an island getaway while staying close to home?

Tāpapakanga Regional Park

Orere

There’s a good reason Splore picks this stellar spot to host their infamous summer festival at Tāpapakanga Regional Park and that’s ‘cause it’s bloody beautiful! You can choose a seaside spot and have your tent’s front door open right onto the beach for only $16 a night pp. There’s lush native forest to explore, a pohutukawa-lined beach, wildlife roaming and even a freshwater creek—what’s not to love?

Rosa Birch Park

Pukekohe

We all have those nights when we just want to be anywhere but home and just take a night's rest outside our usual comfort zone. This is where Rosa Birch Park in Pukekohe comes in. Just a quick one-hour drive from the CBD, it’s the perfect distance to make you feel as though you’re on a wee little retreat. Overlooking wide, spacious and vibrant green fields and a Pak'nSave located nearby in case you get the rumbles, park up your car for the night and enjoy your semi-getaway.

Rays Rest Reserve

Kaiaua

It’s first come first served at Rays Rest Reserve on the east coast so make sure you’ve packed the RV and hit the road early to secure your spot at one of the most beautiful spots right on our doorstep. The reserve sits alongside the white sand stretch of the beach and gives every camper a front-row view of the waves. Make sure you’ve packed the fishing rod.

Prefer to hit the road in style? Check out NZ’s best boutique campervans.

Image credit: Home Bay by Auckland iSite.

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