Summer's here, and what better way to enjoy a lazy day than to head to the beach.
Auckland is home to hundreds of beaches - some of which are named among the best in the world - so it's no surprise Kiwis flock to them as soon as warm weather arrives.
But if you want to avoid the crowds at beaches this year, here are some secluded spots you can spend your summer days at.
This rugged and remote west coast beach is only accessible via a gravel road, but in just over an hour-long drive from the CBD, you can enjoy the sprawling black sand while basking under the sun.
Located down Whatipu Rd from the Huia turnoff, the beach offers hikes and fishing spots, with enough to please everyone.
It's about a 15 minute walk to the sandy shores from the car park, and with large sand dunes and caves to explore, it's sure to be a beach the whole family can explore.
Kendall Bay Beach
If you're after a more swimming-friendly beach, then the idyllic Kendall Bay could be the one for you.
The beach's entrance is found on Onetaunga Rd opposite Chelsea View Dr. The sandy shores are found down a path that is steep in some areas, but there's seating at strategic viewpoints with stunning views over the Waitematā Harbour.
There's also a 35 minute-long walking route around the Kauri Point Centennial Path at the beach if a stroll is needed on your summer day. But beware, there are several stairs to climb along this path.
A bonus for dog owners: There's an off-leash exercise area with plenty of space for your four-legged friends.
French Bay Beach
Just a few minutes from Titirangi Village is French Bay Beach, a small local spot that's perfect for a leisurely day out.
The beach is mainly used for boating activities since it's next to the French Bay Yacht Club, or by locals for walks.
If you do visit this beach be sure to wear shoes, because the empty oyster shells and coarse texture on the shore may cut your feet.
The sandy shores are relatively easy to access - there's plenty of parking at the end of Valley Rd and also several bus stops nearby.
But before heading out for a swim, be sure to check the Safe Swim website to see if the water's safe that day.
The unspoiled beauty of remote Tawhitokino Beach can only be reached by foot, kayak, or small boat, so get ready for an adventure.
The beach is on the east coast past the Kawakawa Bay turnoff at Clevedon. After parking at the Waiti Bay car park, follow the marked Tawhitokino Track around the rocks, through the bush, and over Papanui Point.
While visiting Tawhitokino's white sand beach, you can enjoy swimming, picnicking, or exploring the surrounding area.
The beach can only be accessed at low tide, so ensure to check tide times before embarking on your adventure there.
While Lake Wainamu technically isn't a beach, its sandy shore and steep dunes make it worthy of this list.
Located out west near Bethells Beach, the lush, green surrounds and secluded location make it a perfect getaway from the hustle and bustle of the city.
But if you feel like going for a walk, there's a track around the lake that leads to a waterfall.
From the car park on Bethells Rd, take the Lake Wainamu track that follows a stream to the steep sand dunes.