Call it a suburban treasure. Onehunga locals are blessed with the addition of their own, new, backyard beach. It’s personal. Being small, rarely packed out, and further divided into several smaller bays. It’s communal. Everyone greets each other, and no one feels out of place.
As with any venture outdoors, I highly recommend lashings of sunscreen and a wide-brimmed hat. The newly planted trees are yet to provide shelter, so consider setting up camp with umbrellas and tents, and bring clothes that will give you cover from the sun. Harem pants and a light shawl were perfect for me.
Gentle water and soft sand underfoot make this a great beginner’s beach for a casual dip. Feels like a desert on a dry, still day. But with a light breeze, it’s heaven. You won’t even notice the SH20 motorway.
Dogs are permitted on a leash. If you want to take your dogs for a splash, there’s the perfectly good and supremely dog-friendly Onehunga Basin just a stone’s throw away (walk over either of the bridges) where they can run freely.
No rubbish bins. No water fountains. Lavatories at the far end of the Orpheus Drive carpark. Does Mr Whippy count? There’s usually an ice cream truck nearby on a good day.
Park right by the water near the end of Orpheus Drive. Or, try the Onehunga Basin carpark on Beachcroft Ave; then walk over one of the bridges.