Gisborne Surfing

About Gisborne

With nearly 3,500km (2190mi) of coastline, there are many areas to check on the North Island. On the east side, there are up to 8 surf regions: Northland, Coromandel, Bay of Plenty, East Coast, Mahia, Hawke's Bay, Wairapapa and Wellington down south. Gisborne can get a bit too busy in summer, but further north towards East Cape, less crowded conditions quickly become apparent. Despite the endless pointbreak lefts of Raglan to practise on, many of New Zealand's best competitive surfers come from the Gisborne area, because what it lacks in primo surf spots, is more than made up for by its consistency. Although the Gisborne zone surf is smaller and generally cleaner than the west coast, don't think that it's any less powerful. Above average surfer density combined with quality spots, conveniently hidden amidst the sunniest and most untouched part of New Zealand, gives rise to Gisborne's reputation as the surf capital.


  • Many right pointbreaks

  • Clean mid-season swells

  • Hollow, powerful beaches

  • Untouched coastline


  • Small and crappy summers

  • Semi-crowded main spots

  • Chilly winter temps

  • Some difficult access

Surf Spots