You can’t have lived in Auckland long if you haven’t had this walk recommended to you yet.

If it’s good swimming weather then I’d recommend Milford for a dip before you start on the track. The town itself has such a nice holiday vibe to it and feels quite far from Auckland to me. The beach is just as beautiful as your average North Shore beach but with none of the manic crowds that you get with the likes of Taka. Side note, if you don’t have kids and still relish your chilled weekend mornings then do NOT go anywhere near Takapuna beach on Sunday – yes there’s a cute as market there but it’s not worth it. Anyway, back to the walk!

The great thing about this one is that you wander right along the water’s edge the whole way. Wear decent shoes as you’ll be climbing over wet rocks for quite a bit of it. Don’t stress though, it’s still a relatively easy stroll for the most part. There are also parts that are quite narrow so if it’s busy you may end up having to let people by. You’ll want to stop for pretty pics along the way anyway as the scenery is gorgeous.

Once you get to Takapuna follow the crowds to Takapuna Beach Cafe. This is a bit of an institution over on the shore and I was surprised by their unique brunch menu. It’s certainly not your standard fare.

I went for the smoked fish omelette which was a little bit intense for the first meal of the day given it was full of capers. Still, it was tasty and well presented. Tom’s dish of the fried eggs with serrano and pecorino looked modest but was super rich and filling.

We should have left room for dessert as the gelato at The Store (part of the same complex) looked incredible. One word of warning though, it is manic AF in and around the cafe so if serene is what you’re after this is not the place for you. To be fair we went on a sunny public holiday in Auckland so it might be a bit more zen mid week. 

If it’s too packed you can always build your hunger even more and wait until you’re back in Milford for brunch. There are a few decent cafes hidden around but you won’t get the views (and excellent people watching) of Takapuna beach cafe. I basically spent most of our time there watching all the different dogs and getting clucky for a puppy of our own. Sigh, one day…


Cost: FREE

Toilets: Yes, at both ends. In Milford Park and public loos are also in the same complex as the Takapuna Beach Cafe.

Good eateries/coffee nearby: Yes. Milford: Bread and Butter cafe. Takapuna: Takapuna Beach Cafe. 

Time needed: Less than an hour each way – leave time for eats in Takapuna!

Difficulty: Easy. Wear grippy shoes.