Oriental Bay Travel Wellington

My Top 5 Wellington Beaches

This is my list of the top 5 Wellington beaches! Wellington has some stunning beaches, we even have a beach right in the city, a 5 minute drive from the Wellington Central Business District. How lucky are we?!

Although some Wellington beaches can be a little rocky, that does not take the enjoyment out of going.

Oriental Bay Beach

Oriental Bay beach is a beach that’s just a short 5 minute drive (if that) from the busy Wellington business area.

On a dreamy summer’s ☼ day, this beach is packed with people! Although this beach is small, it is certainly the most popular beach! The sand is amazing.

Oriental Bay
Oriental Bay Beach

There is a water fountain in the harbor which is controlled by a wind sensor. It is activated when the wind is constant. There is plenty of parking along the beach, although you will need to get there early if you want a spot!

The Carter Water Fountain located in the harbor in Oriental Bay
The Carter Fountain at Oriental Bay Beach

Across the road from the beach, there are quite a few amazing cafes and plenty of ice cream. Next to the beach is the Freyberg Swimming Pools, and a restaurant on a boat called The Tug Boat funnily enough. Just down the road you’ll find a big kids play area and a skate park and basketball hoops for the bigger kids.

Oriental Bay
Oriental Bay

There is also a place near the beach where you can hire a 4 person bike called Crocodile bikes which are great fun for the whole family (which I talk about in my other blog post https://travelwellingtonwithme.com/shakes-croc-bikes-and-sunshine/) and also rent out skates so you can ride or skate along the long beach front and take in the stunning views of the harbor.


Oriental Bay sand and rocks in Wellington city
Oriental Bay Beach in Wellington City

Take a picnic and spend a day lapping up the sun in Oriental Bay beach!

Lyall Bay Surf Beach

Lyall Bay beach is the most popular beach with surfers in Wellington, it is easily accessible. It’s right next to the airport so you get the view of the planes coming in and leaving. Don’t worry, it’s surprisingly not too noisy!

This is Lyall Bay Beach which is right next to the airport and you can see planes coming in and leaving
Lyall Bay Beach next to the airport

Within the area, there are a number of popular cafes with great views of the beach waves and the surfers. There is also a shopping center across the road which comes in handy if you have forgotten your swim togs at home or just need a new surf board!

A wooden path to walk down
Lyall Bay Beach

There are changing rooms and toilets available and also a children’s playground half way around the beach.

The Maranui and Spruce Goose cafes are the most popular amongst the locals. You will find lots of people having their morning 7am coffees there. Spruce Goose have the most delicious cheese scones, trust me on that! The local fish ‘n’ chip shop is massively popular too. Fish ‘n’ chips on the beach sounds perfect to me!



Eating fish and chips sitting at Lyall Bay beach in Wellington
Fish n Chips at Lyall Bay beach

This beach is patrolled by life guards.

Lyall Bay
Lyall Bay

Island Bay Beach

Island Bay is on the south coast of Wellington. This beach is a bit rockier than the others but with the big children’s playground and great picnic area with barbecues across the road, this beach makes a great family day out.

There are public toilets and changing rooms available. A great beach for snorkeling and diving.

This beach is NOT patrolled by life guards so make sure to keep safe.

Houghton Bay

Scorching Bay Beach

This Wellington beach is another popular beach. Scorching Bay beach is safe to swim in but be careful in strong winds. There is no life guards here either.

This beach has nice sand and a grassy area with a popular café across the road. Surfing is not possible here but gathering shell fish and rock fishing would be enjoyable.

This beach has toilets, changing areas and a playground also.

Raumati Beach

If you are willing to go for a drive or a scenic train ride, then Raumati beach is located on the Kapiti Coast of Wellington by Paraparaumu.

Raumati Beach

This beach just goes on and on and it is such a nice walk along it. It is just a stunning beach!

Raumati beach
Raumati Beach, Paraparaumu

Just across from the beach there is the Raumati Marine Gardens which has a big playground and also a splash pad for the kids…and the big kids! The splash pad is great if the kids don’t like swimming in the beach as they can still run around in their togs under the water sprinklers, great to cool off on a hot summer’s! The playground also has a picnic area with tables and barbecues.

Splash pad
Splash Pad at Marine Gardens Raumati

A rideable miniature train is also included in the gardens, another bit of fun for the kids.

I think it’s well worth the drive or a nice train ride out there.

Down below is a link if you want to find out the operating times of the sprinklers and more information.

Water sprinkler


Overall, all Wellington beaches are incredible no matter where you go!


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  1. Wow! These beaches are all so gorgeous, I’d love to visit one day xx


    1. Thank you! We would love to have you!

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