Ninety Mile Beach, New Zealand

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Location of Ninety Mile Beach

Ninety Mile Beach (official name Te-Oneroa-a-Tōhē/Ninety Mile Beach)[1] is on the western coast of the far north of the North Island of New Zealand.[2] The beach is actually 88 kilometres (55 miles) long.[3] Its southern end is close to the headland of Reef Point, to the west of Ahipara Bay, near Kaitaia. From there it sweeps briefly northeast before running northwest along the Aupouri Peninsula for the majority of its length. It ends at Scott Point, 5 kilometres (3 mi) south of Cape Maria van Diemen and about 10 kilometres (6 mi) south of Cape Reinga.

Bodyboarding down the Te Paki dunes is a popular tourist activity.
NASA satellite photo of the Aupouri Peninsula and Ninety Mile Beach
A car sunk in a stream on Ninety Mile Beach

The beach is officially a public highway[4] and is used as an alternative to State Highway 1 north of Kaitaia, though mainly for tourist trips, or when the main road is closed due to landslides or floods.[citation needed] The beach and the dunes at Te Paki in the north are a tourist destination. The Te Paki dunes, which look much like a desert landscape, are used for sandboarding.


In the days of sailing ships a number of vessels were wrecked on the beach.[5]

In 1932 the beach was used as the runway for some of the earliest airmail services between Australia and New Zealand.

Ninety Mile Beach was included as part of Te Araroa[6] when it officially opened in 2011.

In a 2013 feature for the British television motoring programme Top Gear, Jeremy Clarkson drove the length of the beach in a Toyota Corolla[7] as part of a race against an AC45 racing yacht crewed by British Olympic sailor Sir Ben Ainslie and the winning crew of the 2010 America's Cup, with James May also on board.[8]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ [1] Deed Of Settlement, Ngati Kuri and the Crown. Retrieved 10 February 2014
  2. ^ "Iwi deal to co-manage 90 Mile Beach". The New Zealand Herald. 27 January 2012. Retrieved 27 January 2012.
  3. ^ "Ninety Mile Beach – Northland & Bay of Islands, New Zealand".
  4. ^ "Ninety Mile Beach". Tourism New Zealand.
  5. ^ "The Church Missionary Gleaner, June 1847". Honesty of New-Zealanders in Circumstances of Temptation. Adam Matthew Digital. Retrieved 16 October 2015.
  6. ^ "Te Araroa – New Zealand's Trail – Northland". Retrieved 17 June 2019.
  7. ^ "Jeremy Clarkson praises NZ as holy land fit for Son of God". TVNZ ONE NEWS.
  8. ^ "Top Gear series 20". BBC.

Coordinates: 34°43′S 172°56′E / 34.717°S 172.933°E / -34.717; 172.933