Located on the western coast of the far north of the North Island of New Zealand Ninety Mile Beach and the giant sand dunes come as quite a surprise as you travel northwards on the highway. It’s hard to resist a stop here to walk along the huge beach and jump or board down the sand dunes.
Ninety Mile Beach is in fact a mere 55 miles (88 km) long, the name wasn’t an attempt to make the beach sound more impressive but stems from the days when missionaries travelled on horse back, a horse could travel 30 miles in a day before needing to be rested. The beach took three days to travel therefore earning its name.
Ninety Mile Beach was used as a runway for some of the earliest airmail services between Australia and New Zealand and it is still sometimes used as an alternative road to State Highway 1. We decided not to take the hire care for a spin and went for a paddle instead.