12 Hours Raglan

The beach at Raglan, New Zealand.

Casual beachy vibes, good people, good food are what make Raglan what it is. A township with a penchant for zero waste and keeping New Zealand beautiful, follow our guide to make the most of your day trip. 

Raglan is known for its black sand surf beaches, its passion for protecting the environment, and the local art scene. Located 48km west of Hamilton, it’s a haven for many Kiwis in the summertime to surf, relax, eat, and explore. Raglan is surrounded by gorgeous blue oceans and lush green bush, so you will be snapping photos of the scenery wherever you go - it has even been named ‘New Zealand’s Best Looking Town’ by Lonely Planet. Get your Keep Cup ready for a big cup of coffee, your swimsuit, towel, and jandals for the beach and enjoy 12 hours in Raglan.


Wake up at Solscape Family Bach

611 Wainui Road, Raglan

Wake up in Solscape’s Family Bach, spacious and open plan with a big outdoor deck for enjoying the sunrise outside with a warm cuppa. This place is perfect for up to five people with two bedrooms and plenty of space to relax. Solscape even has its very own café - The Conscious Kitchen - which serves plant-based organic goodness with fresh produce being harvested on-site!

9am: Breakfast at Rock-It Kitchen

248 Wainui Road, Raglan

Raglan has delicious coffee, and we know you love a good cuppa in the morning, too. Head to Rock-It Kitchen a little way out of town and find yourself in a cosy woolshed, surrounded by native New Zealand plants with a tidal stream gently bubbling past. It is the perfect place to create the vibe for your day. You'll see why low-key and relaxed are words that perfectly describe Raglan.

10am: Shopping at ULO's

5 Bow Street, Raglan

Feel in the mood for a wee shop? Head to ULO's and lust after the eclectic collection of vintage clothing, records and art. Sitting proudly on the corner of Bow Street, ULO celebrates bohemia, uniqueness and beauty; no matter your style, you are sure to find an item in this store you will want to walk away with. A beautiful range of hand drawn creations by artist, Kyoko Shirai, adorn the walls as well as printed jumpers and tees.  

Exterior of ULO's shop in Raglan.

11am: Raglan Surf School

Ngarunui Beach Road, Raglan

Why not get some surfing in while you're here? There are plenty of waves!
Raglan Surf School caters to newbie frothers right through to more experienced seadogs offering board and wetsuit hire and lessons.  Raglan Surf School welcomes people of all ages and abilities to come along and try,  holding a belief that everyone can (and should) have a go at catching a wave. Professional guides and all equipment supplied means you just have to turn up with the enthusiasm and a mean shaka.  

Raglan Surf School on the beach at Ngarunui, Raglan.


1pm: Lunch at The Shack

19 Bow Street, Raglan

The Shack is the place to eat in Raglan, serving up the finest local produce and delicious Rocket Coffee. With vegan, gluten-, and dairy-free options and free-range eggs and meat, you will be hard-pressed to find something you don’t want to eat on their menu. If you are having lunch a little later, or are just living on beach time, they offer local beer, wines, and ciders - perfect for a lazy summer afternoon. 

2pm: Shopping local. Start at Tony Sly Pottery

90 Wallis Street, Raglan

Tony Sly Pottery is made with love right here in Raglan. Using terracotta clay from Dunedin, Tony shapes honest, useful, and handmade pottery for cooks using colours from our landscapes - watery greens with turquoise soft blues and whites inspired by the harbour where his studio is located. From pasta bowls to mugs and utensil jars, you’ll want to take a piece of Raglan home with you.

Soul Shoes

92 Wallis Street, Raglan

Rob Galloway has been in the workshop since 1973. Soul Shoes is the place to go if you want long lasting unique shoes, bags and belts. Mindful of the environment, Soul Shoes creates products that are made to last, and give the option of having 100% recycled conveyor belt soles, even using recycled shoe boxes for their orders. You will love looking through this shop and the New Zealand craftsmanship that is displayed there.

Kanuka Design

1 Wainui Road, Raglan

With a collection of homewares, ceramics, jewellery, books, and a whole lot more, Kanuka Design is a store you are going to want to pop in and spend some time searching the shelves. Representing established and emerging artists and celebrating unique New Zealand designs, they are the perfect place to support New Zealand artists and locals, and for finding beautiful unique pieces for your home or for a gift.

3pm: Afternoon Coffee Raglan Roast

Volcom Lane, Raglan

Head to Raglan Roast for a good ol’ cup of coffee after all of that shopping. Located in their “hole in the wall” coffee shop on Volcom Lane, they roast coffee daily to make sure it's at its freshest and best. The best part is you can take their beans home with you, to keep experiencing the joy a cup of Raglan Roast brings, everyday in the comfort of your own home.

3.30pm: Walk to Bridal Veil Falls

Bridal Veil Falls

Walk through the native forest following the Pakoka River to the top of Bridal Veil Falls. There are two viewing platforms at the top of the falls that give a stunning view of the falls and the surrounding lush greenery. You can then descend to a bottom view point for more glorious views. The track is 10 minutes one way and the higher viewing platforms are suitable for wheelchairs and prams!

Photo by Tony Foster. 


6pm: Dinner at ULO's Kitchen

6 Wallis St, Raglan

From the same team behind earlier mentioned ULO's, the restuarant and bar brandishing the same name is all about the eats. ULO's Kitchen serve up a delicious array of  Asian inspired dishes including bao buns, kaarage chicken and spicy laksa to name a few. The quirky and eclectic space is filled with reclaimed furniture, spatterings of vintage and colourful mural paintings. ULO's Kitchen is all about the laidback hangs and tasty bites.   

Interior view of ULO Kitchen.

8pm: Finish the night at Isobar

23 Bow Street, Raglan

Once you’ve had your tummies filled you may be ready for a cocktail or two? Head to Isobar for cocktails, New Zealand craft beer, and boutique wine - there’s something for everyone - where you are sure to finish your night with a lot of fun. Make sure to check what events are on too, as you organise what to do in Raglan.