We’ve just spent the weekend in a town named Raglan (after the officer who led the Charge of the Light Brigade). Apparently it is famous in Surfer circles as having one of the best left-handed breaks in the world, and sure enough the place was very surf orientated. There’s even a big, pro longboard surf competition next weekend, but unfortunately we won’t be around to watch.

You don’t need to be a surfer to enjoy Raglan, however. It’s quiet and relaxing and there are some great places to stay. The surrounding scenery is spectacular and there are miles of beaches to walk along.


The view to the south is dominated by an extinct volcano, Mount Karioi.

Karioi Mountain

Although, as you might be able to tell from the photos, the weather was a bit wild from time to time, this didn’t prevent some from taking advantage of the beaches. My attempts to photograph the surfers failed, as they were always too far out to show up, but there were other things going on besides surfing.

Kite Surfing

The beaches weren’t the only interesting things in Raglan. There were clearly a few Individuals living in the town judging by some of the houses.

Futuro House

And if you just want to relax with a book and some peace and quiet in pleasant surroundings, check out the Raglan Backpackers and Waterfront Lodge. It’s a mellow hostel run by a couple named Jeremy and Lynda (along with Jed the dog and Meg the cat) with clean, comfortable rooms, great views from the sofa-filled lounge and a well equipped kitchen. Jeremy does reasonably priced surfing lessons, and will happily regale you with surfer tales and the like for free. There are canoes and bikes available as well, free for guests.

Raglan Backpackers