Oreti Beach is a coastal playground just minutes from Invercargill’s city centre. The beach is a wonderland for families to adrenaline junkies and everybody in-between, with plenty of opportunities for motorbiking, 4-wheel driving, wind-powered vehicles, horse riding, dog walking, kayaking, surfing, swimming and paddling, sandcastle building, shell collecting etc. It is a popular recreational asset and cyclists are often spotted riding along this wide, sandy beach. Setting out from the Dunns Road entrance, mountain bikers can ride as far as Riverton, although the most popular loop is from Dunns Road to Christies Track, and back along the Oreti River Walkway/Cycleway. Riders can also pop into the Sandy Point Mountain Bike Park along the way.
Why might I recognise Ōreti Beach?
The beach is often described as a “coastal highway” as it is one of the only beaches in New Zealand that vehicles are allowed to drive on. At around 26 kilometres in length, the beach provided Southland’s motorcycling hero Burt Munro with a testing and racing site for his modified Indian motorcycle. In February 1957 Munro set a New Zealand Open Beach record of 131.38 mph at Oreti Beach; in 1975 he raised this to 136 mph. So come and drive right onto this famous beach to explore, play, witness stunning sunsets on long Southland summer nights and a perfect spot for stargazing.
- Drive safely, always wear a helmet if you’re on a motorbike, and slow down!
- Always swim between the flags.
- Walk your dog on a leash, or keep them under control at all times.