Local Maori people originally called this town Whaingaroa (“the long pursuit”). The first Europeans to settle the area were missionaries James and Mary Wallis in 1835, and in 1858, the town’s name was changed to Raglan.
If you’re a surfer, get to The Point! The Point, also known as Manu Bay, was featured in the surfing movie Endless Summer and is rumoured to have the world’s longest left-hand break. Ngarunui Beach is a safe beach for swimmers and less experienced surfers. Both beaches feature Raglan’s black volcanic sand, which makes for a striking combo of colours next to the green hills and brilliant blue sea.
Raglan is also great for walks. If you don’t mind a three-hour trek, take the trip to the top of Mt. Karioi. The views of the rolling countryside and ocean make it worthwhile, and on clear days you can even see the tops of other mountains. If you want something a little less strenuous, there are several other walks in the Raglan area. Bridal Veil Falls is a towering waterfall in the middle of a forest filled with tawa trees, and a 25-minute drive out of town will get you there.
Raglan also has a live music scene, with bars and venues hosting touring musicians and even open-mic nights. Check them out and you may see the next Lorde in action.
On top of being lined with palm trees, the streets of Raglan’s town centre also feature fashion, arts and crafts and gift shops, hip and relaxed cafes, and succulent restaurants.
Hotels in Raglan start at AU$60 per night. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.