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Home >> Attractions >> Whangamata, Onemana and Opoutere
Whangamata, Onemana and Opoutere
The town of Whangamata was established during the days of gold mining and logging. Today it is a popular seaside town. Whangamata has two long, sandy beaches with good surf breaks. Offshore, Hauturu Island can be reached by kayak or wading at low tide. Another island, Whenuakura, is about a kilometre east of the southern Whangamata beach. There is a small beach inside this island which was formed when a large blowhole collapsed. As a result, Whenuakura is sometimes called Donut Island. The surrounding Coromandel Forest Park offers a wide range of walks through native forests to waterfalls and mining relics.

Nine kilometres north of Whangamata, the ocean beach of Onemana has a cosy, small community feeling. Further north again, the settlement of Opoutere opens onto a beautiful five-kilometre surf beach that has been protected from development by a forested reserve.

Opoutere Wildlife Refuge Reserve is a nesting site for the rare New Zealand dotterel. This small wading bird makes its nest, a mere scraping in the sand, amidst sparse vegetation just above high water. Eggs and chicks are very susceptible to predation and dotterel nests are easily destroyed by storms and careless feet. The dotterel's scurrying antics are a delight to watch from a careful distance.