"Surfed, ate, surfed, drank, slept, surfed, ate, surfed, drank!" - Tim, Hawkes Bay
Piha is a great base for surfing the local area, there are waves here every day and the North East Coast, Coromandel and Raglan are all only 2 1/2 hrs away.
Piha Beach consists of two distinct beaches, South Piha and North Piha with Lion Rock dividing them. Best surfed between 3-6 foot (1- 2.5m), in easterly winds on all tides, is good for surfers of all levels.
South Piha is the most popular area of the beach and features quality, hollow powerful left and right beach-breaks.
North Piha features a multitude of shifting beach breaks. Better on a smaller swell 3-4 ft with offshore winds and on all tides. You can find good peaks behind Lion rock and the north side and further up the beach at Helipad, Rivermouth, United and at Caves at the very north end of the beach which has good shelter from strong NE winds.
Other recommended surfing beaches nearby are Karekare, Anawhata and Whites. Further afield among others are Te Arai, Forestry, Raglan and Whangamata which are possible as day trips all about 2.5 hours drive from here.
SURFING IN NEW ZEALAND: WHAT TO BRING?
Surfboards:A 5-6' shortboard and a longboard/mini-mal for the smaller days will get you by.
Jan -March: Boardies or 3/2 short arm/legs and 3/2 full suit for spring and autumn.
April- Dec: A 3/2 will do in northland but the further south the colder it gets and you'll enjoy a 4×3 fullsuit.
South Island- Summer: 3×2 fullsuit . Winter: 4×3 fullsuit plus hood, gloves and booties.
Piha Beachstay has a variety of surfboards and wetsuits for hire to guests. Prices are $25 and wetsuits are $10. We have mini-mals and longboards (7' -9') Surfboards are also available for hire from the two Surf Shops in Piha: Piha Surf Shop and The Lion Rock Surf Shop, see below...
There are several surf schools at Piha offering surf lessons for Adults and Children including surfboard and wetsuit. Please contact the surf schools directly. They can pre-arrange lessons for your stay. (Prices subject to change)
Piha Surf School – Phil Wallis - one-on-one and group Piha surf lessons (Beginner to advanced and children)
Ratso's Lion Rock Surf School - 2hr one-on-one and group Piha surf lessons (Beginner to advanced and children)
Rapu Adventures - 'Rapu' which in Maori means ‘to seek’; offer group surf lessons every week from October through to May!
Tamariki Tours Surf School - Matt Sheales
Local Surf Shops:
There are two local surf shops Piha Surf Shop and Lion Rock Surf Shop that rent and sell surfboards and accessories.
Lion Rock Surf Shop: Ian "Ratso" Buchanen is a local surfer and shaper. They sell new and used surfboards, clothing, wetsuits, wax, legropes and have rental boards and wetsuits. $30-$40 per day and wetsuits $15-$20 per day. Located next to the Piha Store in the centre of town. Seasonal hours during summer 10am - 4pm daily.
Piha Surf Shop: Mike Jolly is a local surfer and shaper and sells new and used boards, clothing, wetsuits, wax, legropes and have rental boards and wetsuits. $25 -$35 per day and wetsuits $10. Located 122 Seaview Road on the way down the hill to Piha. Open year-round when Mike isn't surfing! Ph: (09) 812-8723