We first heard of Raglan through a fellow backpacker in Tauranga where he shared it was one of the better towns for nightlife, though also cautioning it might be more suitable for those who surfed. We didn’t, but we were desperate for some form of nightlife after a month away from home.
Though we stayed in an Airbnb with a welcoming host who opened up his house to us, we weren’t crazy over the state of cleanliness of the house. It was located right in town though, so it was really convenient.
Arriving just after lunch, we walked down to town for a meal and settled down at The Shack. I love anything corn, so it wasn’t hard choosing the chickpea & corn fritters as my main!
Raglan actually reminded me a little of Bali, with its hipster cafes and surf shops. I decided a cup of flat white was in order when I spotted Raglan Roast tucked away in a corner. Pity it wasn’t the prettiest cup of coffee, but the friendly barista made up for it and she even offered to take a photo for us without us asking.
We stayed for two nights, and while the skies were overcast the first day, we had the perfect beach weather the next. First stop was Ngarunui Beach which was probably more for surfers than sun-worshipers like us. But that didn’t stop us from plonking down our beach mats and dozing off under the blanket of warm sunlight, with the occasional glance at surfer dudes.
After two hours, we decided it was time to move to the next destination – Manu Bay. It gained popularity after being featured in the movie ‘Endless Summer’, which we obviously didn’t watch else we would have known it was really just meant for surfing. So no sun worshipping here, just a lot of ogling at the surfers doing their thing.
And that basically summed up our trip to Raglan. As you can probably tell, we had no nightlife whatsoever, perhaps because we were there during the weekdays instead. Though we felt slightly cheated, us non-surfers still enjoyed ourselves with the town’s beaches and falls!