Exploring Magnet Bay on Banks Peninsula

IMG_5893There are plenty of secluded little bays dotted right around Banks Peninsula, each beautiful in their own unique way and tucked away from a main road. One in particular greets the southerly swell head on resulting in it being one of the famous Canterbury left hand surf break when the conditions are right. Magnet Bay is around 1.5 hours drive from Christchurch and the first southern beach on the peninsula after Birdlings Flat. It's a rocky beach but as with most locals, beauty comes with the right swell conditions rather than golden sand. It's a bit of a trick to get here as it's mostly gravel road after you reach the top of the hill, so if you're in a 4-6 berth campervan you definitely want to avoid this spot. A backpacker/smaller campervan you should be ok but be prepared for a pretty slow trip. It's a working farm, so just be careful and drive slow as you head down to the end of the road, you'll see a bunch of pine trees that you can park up next to. On day where there's a southerly swell and a Northerly you might be a bit hard pushed to find a good parking spot but in all honestly that doesn't happen all that often so if you're just chancing it you should be fine. Magnet Bay This place is full of wildlife, Seals, Kahawai, Rig and who knows what else...But bring your fishing rod if it's calm and you might be able to catch yourself something to eat for tea. There's plenty of firewood here, so as long as you're careful and there's no danger you can light yourself a fire. You can also spend the night if you're game! Caves at Magnet BayHere's a view from inside one of the caves, bring a mattress or two as the ground is very rocky. If not you might find yourself heading back in the middle of the night to your car for the comfort of the back seat. This cave only had space for one, so if you're a lone wolf you'll be sweet! Even without any swell, Magnet Bay is fun for a day trip and more often than not you'll be the only ones here. It's wild with lots of marine life and still not too far from Christchurch. Magnet Bay [mc4wp_form] Blog post by Adam Hutchinson