Raglan is the perfect family destination, and a real insider’s tip. Raglan town has a few excellent cafes and restaurants, a local library, and a wonderful ice cream shop. The locals are extremely friendly, and there are plenty of beautiful beaches and nature walks accessible within minutes from Raglan, as well as world-renowned surf beaches. Even if you’re not into surfing yourself, it is still mesmerising to watch the surfers riding the waves, and local fishermen hauling up their catch from the rocks.

From Raglan town, you can walk over a foot bridge to a playground right on the beach, (with slides and swings, as well as BMX bike paths and skateboard rink). There’s also a campsite (with cabins as well) right next to the playground. There are usually small planes landing at the airfield (a large meadow next to the campground) and para-sailers often glide past. In the evenings you can watch paddle boarders poling their way back into the harbour. There are long stretches of black sand beach to run and dig and play on as well. The local supermarket also sells fishing lines for children, and bait, so they can have a try fishing themselves (either from the jetty by the foot bridge or from the Wharf at the other end of Raglan).

There’s also a lovely bush walk to Bridal Veil Falls, which is about 20 minutes drive from Raglan, heading back into Hamilton.

Afterwards, don’t forget to have fish and chips from Jo’s Takeaways at the Te Kopua Camp Store right across from the playground. You can take your fish and chips back to the playground and eat at a picnic table right by the beach. A slice of paradise!

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