This is a great way to spend your day hiking. Just a short 2-minute drive from Muriwai or a 40-minute drive from Auckland you can spend your day tip-toeing around the mountainous cliff faces of the Wild West coast. The walk can be done from two different start points from Bethells beach walking to Constable Road in Muriwai or vice versa. I parked my car at Constable Road and walked to Bethells beach in the back which was a tad over 20km.
I would recommend this walk to anyone who is capable of walking for several hours and had sufficient equipment to embrace the wild weather conditions. Also, it would be encouraged to take a friend with you. Just in the case of an emergency, it is always best to be prepared. Funnily enough, I saw some friends having a picnic which I thought was a great idea and an ideal way to take in these breath-taking views.
I have to say that there are not many views like this in New Zealand. The black sand beaches are so iconic to the west coast of the North Island that it should tempt any outdoor enthusiast to make the trip.
I would also encourage those who finish their trip to Muriwai to pay a visit to the Gannet Colony, Maori Bay, and Muriwai Beach. For sports lovers, Muriwai also is home to some good surf and a great golf course. Otherwise, there is a café to grab a quality coffee, a great way to either start or finish the walk.
If you were to spend some more time at Bethells beach, you can also bring your surfboard and make the trip worth your while by catching a few waves. The beach also encompasses a glorious cave at the far end of it which fills and empties with the tide. There really is plenty to see and do for nature lovers out west!
So get out there guys, bring your camera, bring a friend and be ready to be wowed… I certainly was.
I have summarised my day out by writing about the highlights, lowlights, learning, and also my Wow moment.
My Highlights: the spectacular views from above looking down on many untouched beaches lying nestled in the rocks below.
My Lowlights: I had this great idea that this would be a wicked space to camp, however, there is a no camping sign posted for O’Neills Bay beach and Bethells Beach, because I could imagine this trail making such an amazing multi-day hike ranging from Whatipu to Muriwai.
Something I learned: Apart from the fact I won the starring contest with a cow that had jumped a fence, the most spectacular views to stop for a lunch break is the view point above the O’Neills Bay Beach and Bethells Beach.
My Wow moment: Without a doubt the moment I arrived at the point to see the view of O’Neills bay beach and Bethells beach. I think my words were holy s**t. It really made my jaw drop.