Don’t miss the summer fun — find out where & when to take them
With the warm evenings of late summer stretching on, the water is the place to be. We kiwis love our beaches, and it’s even better when we can take the whole family — including our canine ones.
There’s no denying how happy our dogs are stretching their legs with a good run on the beach, or playing in the waves chasing sticks, balls, or frisbee. But unfortunately, not everyone feels the same. Many beaches around Auckland are either closed to dogs altogether, or only allow them in certain hours through summer.
Check out our list of the best dog beaches in Auckland, in each direction, to find one near you!
Dog friendly beaches - North
Relax and enjoy the stunning bay views while your kids clamber over the playground and your dog runs to his heart’s content in this off-leash beach and park. With plenty of space for ball-throwing, wave-chasing, and even a specially-made water bowl for dog visitors, Kennedy Park is great for active families.
One of the North Shore’s most popular spots for dogs and their owners, Takapuna beach has a long sandy shoreline that’s perfect for dogs to stretch their legs on. Through summer, dogs are allowed off-leash on the beach before 10am and after 6pm — when temperatures are perfect and you can enjoy the golden light across the water.
A little further north, Omaha Beach is a favourite of many dog owners. There’s plenty of space to explore, meet other dogs, and enjoy a picnic on the white sand — so make a day of it, and don’t forget the sunscreen!
Dog friendly beaches - East
This expansive area is great for the whole family, with a playground, sports field, and plenty of space for your dog to run and run and run. Go from frisbee-ing on the grass to cooling off the water, without needing to move the car.
While the beach here may not be the biggest, it sure is social. If your puppy needs to be socialised, or your dog just needs a friend, this is the place to bring them. The western area of the bay is off-lead 24/7 all year round and a great spot for a breezy summer walk. The reserve area is on-leash at all times and the eastern beach is off-leash 5pm-10am in summer.
Dog friendly beaches - Central
While most city centre beaches are more human-friendly than dog-friendly, Coyle Park is one area that lets you have the best of both. The large grassy park has plenty of space for playing fetch, and is only seconds from Point Chev Beach, which allows dogs off-leash in summer after 7pm and before 9am — perfect for a before or after work run.
Dog friendly beaches - South
A network of paths lead through and around the lagoon — meaning you can keep your feet dry while your dog cools off in the water. The whole area is off-leash year-round, so you can make this a favourite spot no matter the season.
Dog friendly beaches - West
Not exactly a beach, but you can’t go past Craigavon Park in summer with its range of forest, grasslands, streams, and exercise stations for dogs and their humans. After a swim in the stream, watch your pup conquer the agility course to dry off before loading him back in the car.
Auckland’s wild west beaches barely need an introduction. Piha, Muriwai, and Bethell’s are around 40-minute’s drive from the city, making them a weekend trip rather than an every-night destination for most people. During summer, Bethell’s is a nesting site for dotterels so you’ll have to keep your dog on the leash, but Piha and Muriwai (between 7pm-9am) make great alternatives until nesting season is over.
Rules & Recommendations
To keep our favourite spaces clean and enjoyable for everyone, remember to follow these easy rules and recommendations:
- Pick up your dog’s poo — you could be fined up to $300 if you don’t!
- Respect other beach users - be aware that some people may be afraid of or allergic to dogs, so keep your buddy under control.
- Steer clear of wildlife — seabirds like to nest in dunes, while seals and penguins can be found around rocks in the early morning and late evenings.
- Keep him under control at all times — not all dogs like each other, or can control themselves when confronted with a tempting family picnic.