Did you know? The black sand, pebble Marine Parade Beach, also known as Napier Beach in Hawke’s Bay is listed as one of the five most dangerous beaches in New Zealand. Regardless, it is a popular beach in Napier with stunning views of the Pacific Ocean, Mahia Peninsula in the north and Cape Kidnappers in the south.
Marine Parade Beach a.k.a Napier Beach – One of New Zealand’s Most Dangerous Beaches
A sudden drop-off just several metres out to the sea makes the waves at Marine Parade Beach potentially dangerous and unpredictable regardless of the season. Large swells and rogue breaks have been known to snatch people from the shore and suck them out to sea.
Since January 1996, there have been six cases of drowning at Marine Parade Beach in Napier; the most recent being in November 2016 according to Water Safety New Zealand figures. Therefore, visitors to the beach are advised to swim in patrolled areas and stay clear of the water’s edge.
But do not let the dangerous nature of the beach intimidate you for it is a thriving playground for locals and visitors alike. The facilities in the area include the Napier i-SITE Visitor Centre, ocean viewing platform, sunken gardens, ocean spa complex, and a bike track. The National Aquarium of New Zealand is just several metres away.
A Relaxing Day at the Beach
A visit to the Marine Parade Beach (Napier Beach) is a must-do activity when one in Napier, Hawke’s Bay. So, on a bright and sunny day, several friends and I made a trip to Marine Parade Beach (Napier Beach) just to enjoy the dramatic view and cold sea breeze.
I was excited to see another black sand, pebble beach. It was my second time being on such a unique beach, the first being Perissa Beach in Santorini. True enough, the views were as spectacular as they said it will be and the sight of Cape Kidnappers in the distance kind of reminds me of beautiful Santorini. <3
Walking on the beach was a heck of a challenge! We struggled to keep our posture and balance on the loose pebbles. 😛 We played at the water’s edge and sunbathed on the beach. We also had a fun time stacking and balancing the various sizes of pebbles too while taking lots of photos for memories. It was a relaxing and fun day at Marine Parade Beach (Napier Beach).
A Colourful Celebration of Lights at Napier Sound Shell
Later in the evening, we found out that there was a Celebration of Lights happening at the Napier Sound Shell. For your info, the Sound Shell is a popular Napier entertainment venue where private and public events such as concerts and shows are frequently held. It is located next to the Napier i-Site Visitor Centre.
Instead of going home, we decided to stick around and enjoy the celebration. There were several food trucks around offering a great variety of food, snacks and drinks. I bought some Chinese food for dinner and made myself comfortable on the grass in front of the Sound Shell.
That evening, we were treated to an array of Indian dance and martial arts performances. It was a fun and entertaining experience. The crowd loved the show and even danced along to the catchy tunes.
In a Nutshell
My friends and I had a wonderful and memorable day at Marine Parade Beach (Napier Beach) and enjoyed the Celebration of Lights at Napier’s Sound Shell. If you happen to be in Napier, Hawke’s Bay, be sure to visit this scenic destination and have a great time there. 🙂
Up next: Private room at The White House in Kinloch, Taupo (booked via Airbnb)