The New Chums Beach walk: Tropical perfection in the Coromandel

Use this information to find your way along the New Chums Beach walk – one of the best beaches in all of Aotearoa.

With one of the world’s top 10 beaches (and our favourite in New Zealand) an easy drive from Auckland, there’s no need to fly to a tropical island for a taste of paradise. 

This guide will help you get to New Chums Beach, and, perhaps most importantly, to find that incredible lookout that we know you’ve seen on Instagram.

Secluded, out-of-this-world beautiful and still relatively off the well-worn tourist trail, this is a real New Zealand must-do. It is also one of the best walks in the Coromandel.

The beach itself is an easy 30-minute hike along the shoreline. Don’t worry though, we’ll help you figure out exactly how to get to New Chums Beach – just don’t forget your camera and your togs!

If you’re travelling to New Zealand, we highly encourage you to check out our posts about the best time to visit our amazing country and our guide to te reo Māori.  Both will be incredibly helpful in helping to plan your visit to Aotearoa.

Woman on top of a rocky cliff overlooking at the blue waters meeting the white sands of New Chums Beach.

Getting to Whangapoua

As one of the best beaches in Coromandel, New Chums Beach is the next bay over from Whangapoua and, as it’s only accessible by foot or boat, Whangapoua is precisely where you’ll need to head first.

From Auckland to Whangapoua

If you’re planning a New Zealand road trip, chances are you’ll visit Whangapoua from Auckland (or you’ll return that way).  Assuming that’s the case, these driving directions will see you right, passing through Coromandel Town on your way to Kiwi paradise.

Destination track map between Auckland and Whangapoua.

Approaching From the South

As Whangapoua is on the Coromandel Peninsula, there are only two ways to approach the bay.

If you’re coming from the centre of New Zealand, you may still approach via Thames/Coromandel Town (as you would if travelling from the North).

Alternatively, if you’re coming from the East Coast, you’ll approach Whangapoua via Hot Water Beach and Whitianga.

A person walking on the shores with the waves on his feet at New Chums Beach.

How to Get to New Chums Beach Walk Once You’re in Whangapoua

  1. Drive along right to the end of Mangakahia Drive (which continues on from Tangiora Avenue).  At the end of the cul-de-sac, you’ll find a car park where you can leave your car free of charge.
  2. Begin walking north along the sand (in the same direction that you were driving in).
  3. Cross the stream (best done up to 2 hours on either side of low tide).
  4. Continue walking along the beach, over rocks for approximately 10 minutes.
  5. Take the path to the left and follow it for approximately 15 minutes as it weaves along next to the ocean, in through the nikau palms.
  6. Follow the path up and over the crest of the hill before continuing on down to New Chums Beach.

How to Get to the New Chums Beach Lookout

If you’re relatively fit and able, it’s well worth a little side trip up to the New Chums lookout, and as it’s right off the main trail, it’s impossible to miss if you know what you’re looking for.

When you hit the crest of the hill, just before you drop down into New Chums Beach, you’ll want to turn right.  An unofficial trail, approximately 4 metres after the blue sign, it’s relatively well-worn and easy to spot.  The hike up takes approximately 10-15 minutes and requires a bit of free-climbing – with good shoes and balance, it’s very doable though.

A woman sitting on a rock with the view of New Chums Beach.

Safety in New Zealand

The New Chums Beach Walk

Everyday safety in New Zealand is incredible.  Whilst in Brazil, we were warned time and time again not to walk in certain parts of Rio but fortunately, in New Zealand, you really won’t encounter any problems along those lines.

Even when walking in relatively secluded spots, like the trail to New Chums Beach, you can expect to be safe every step of the way.

The only things you really have to watch out for safety-wise are sunburn and twisted ankles!

Can I Leave My Gear on the Beach Whilst Swimming?

Generally, yes, it is safe to leave personal items on the beach while you swim nearby.

Kiwis (and those visiting our beautiful country) are generally an honest bunch.

Anyone making the hike across to New Chums Beach is going to find themselves in the same position – faced with a beautiful beach, beckoning them over, and nowhere particularly secure to store their belongings.

Though there will always be exceptions to the full, we are always comfortable leaving items on the beach (or by the pool for that matter) and have never had an issue.

A man with backpack walking in the shores of New Chums Beach while the long waves roll over the sands.

Can I Leave My Things in the Car Whilst Walking to New Chums?

Again, chances are you’ll be fine if you’ve left personal items behind in the car.

Unfortunately though, we don’t have a perfect track record in New Zealand when it comes to travellers leaving gear in cars, so it is a case of better safe than sorry.

Though we were told by a local that break-ins are incredibly rare, we’d recommend you tuck any valuables away, just to be sure.

One of the most beautiful, iconic and private beaches in all of New Zealand, it is surprisingly easy to get to New Chums Beach.

With incredible views and a drop-dead gorgeous beach, what’s stopping you? Perhaps, you may want to explore many amazing things in Coromandel after dipping in New Chums Beach.

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