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Aramoana Beach, Dunedin

Aramoana Beach, Dunedin

There are heaps of reasons to choose Aramoana Beach for your next Dunedin beach adventure. You can collect seashells, surf, watch wildlife, climb sand dunes, look at interesting rock formations or just walk along the beach (often in complete solitude). There are a couple of different sections of beach, broken up by the Aramoana Mole (a massive breakwater) where you’re likely to encounter sea lions and birds. 

The Beach

The section of Aramoana Beach closest to the harbour seems like the perfect place to learn to surf. We’ve seen lots of kids and learner adults trying to ride the gentle waves. I’m not much of a water person but if for some reason I had to learn to surf this is the place I’d do it. This part of the beach is great for a stroll — climb one of the sand dunes for awesome views.

The other part of Aramoana Beach (AKA Big Beach) is a far wilder beast. Huge cliffs loom over the sand and there are some cool rock formations to be found. There are also some steep sand dunes to climb if you’re in need of a workout. You can walk to this part of the beach from the car park near the Mole, but look for the closer car park and you’ll get a scenic first look at the beach as you walk through the dunes.

READ MORE: Dunedin Travel Guide: Everything You Need to Know to Plan Your Trip

The Mole

The Aramoana Mole buzzes with wildlife. We’ve seen heaps of sea lions sunbathing on the rocks and there are always plenty of birds hanging around. It’s a decent walk if you go all the way to the end — quite a unique thing to do in Dunedin!

Massive waves at Aramoana Mole, Dunedin, New Zealand

Aramoana Beach from Above

The Heyward Point Track starts above Aramoana Beach and the view from up there is incredible. You can walk up from Aramoana or drive there via Port Chalmers (it’s a long way to drive between Aramoana and Heyward Point — you may be better off walking if you’re visiting both in the same day. 

READ MORE: 30 Fun Things to Do in Dunedin

Getting to Aramoana

Aramoana is around 25 km from central Dunedin. Head towards Port Chalmers and keep driving along the coastal road. Port Chalmers, with its historic buildings and hillside viewpoints, is a nice place to stop for lunch or a coffee. The bus only goes to Carey’s Bay so it’s not really an option. 

Exploring Dunedin? Check out our post about the best viewpoints in Dunedin (there are 30 of them!)

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Jon Algie

I'm a South Island local -- born in Timaru and raised in Dunedin. I left the island in 2006 and returned 10 years later. Having seen a good chunk of the world I realised how special this place is -- the most beautiful island in the world! Seven years (and almost 400 posts) later I'm still helping locals and tourists alike plan their trips around the South Island.