Is Raglan a good place to go in the winter

Is Raglan a good place to go in the winter?

Why do Raglan surfers put their surfboards in the freezer during the winter? They want to try ice surfing!

Jokes aside, even during the wintertime, you’ll find surfers catching waves in Raglan. This is because, as the temperature drops, Raglan retains its charm during the winter months.

So then, is Raglan a good place to go in the winter?

Yes, Raglan is a good place to go in the winter. The consistent surf breaks are still active, offering seasoned surfers the thrill they seek in the chillier weather. 

For those who prefer to stay dry, the cooler temperatures provide an excellent opportunity to explore the town centre, galleries, and local shops and take winter strolls.

What is the weather like in Raglan during the winter?

Winter in Raglan is like a cool, wet, and windy wonderland! The winter months in Raglan, which extend from June through August, are characterized by cold and wet conditions. 

Despite the chill, the town maintains a certain charm, with the temperature rarely dipping into the freezing zone. The weather is also typically windy, giving the town a brisk and refreshing atmosphere that locals and visitors alike can enjoy.

Average Temperature Range and Rainfall

During winter, temperatures in Raglan are quite moderate compared to other regions. They hover around an average of 8 to 15°C, providing a chilly yet not overly harsh climate.

The town does occasionally experience light frosts, but these are typically followed by sunny days with daytime temperatures climbing into the mid-teens.

As for rainfall, Raglan receives a significant amount of precipitation throughout the year, with the winter months seeing the most rainfall. The annual precipitation level amounts to 1447mm, ensuring a lush, green environment that enhances the town’s natural beauty.

What are the advantages of visiting Raglan during the winter?

From vibrant art scenes and thrilling outdoor adventures to cosy cafes and unique shopping experiences, visiting Raglan during the winter offers a plethora of unexpected benefits.

1. Less Crowded Beaches and Attractions

With fewer tourists around, you can enjoy Raglan’s popular sites at a leisurely pace. The consistently good winter swells are a surfer’s delight, and with smaller crowds, you can enjoy your time on the waves uninterrupted.

2. Lower Accommodation and Travel Costs 

Travelling during the winter months can often be more economical. Many accommodations like Raglan Treehouse, Blackwood Cabin, and Raglan Backpackers offer off-peak rates, making this an affordable time to enjoy Raglan’s welcoming hospitality.

3. Outdoor Activities

Raglan isn’t just about surfing. It’s also known for its great rock climbing, canyoning, and caving expeditions, and winter is the perfect time to do these things.

4. Thriving Arts Scene

Numerous galleries and shops display work from talented local artisans, providing a warm retreat from the winter chill. From traditional Maori carvings to contemporary pieces, there’s something for every art enthusiast in Raglan.

Our recommendations? Check out the Wharf Gallery Raglan or Youmans Studio. 

5. Comfort Food

When it comes to food and drink, Raglan does not disappoint. Enjoy a warm lunch at Raglan Fish or indulge in coffee and cake at The Shack

These cosy eateries offer comfort food that perfectly complements the winter weather.

6. Shopping 

The town centre of Raglan, with its range of shops and cafes, is a great place to explore, especially in winter when the weather is cooler. From unique souvenirs and local crafts to stylish winter wear, you’re sure to find something that catches your eye.

Some shops to check out are Atamira, Raglan Surf Emporium, and Artisan and Merchant

7. Whale Watching

Winter is the best time to spot migrating whales off the coast of Raglan. A boat tour with Raglan Boat Charters can bring you up close to these majestic creatures. 

8. Winter Hiking

With cooler temperatures, winter is an excellent time to explore Raglan’s numerous hiking trails. The Bridal Veil Falls and Mt Karioi trails are particularly stunning during this time.

9. Hot Pools

After a day of surfing or hiking, relax and warm up in one of the nearby hot pools. That’s why the Te Aroha Mineral Spas are a must-visit.

What are some activities to enjoy in Raglan during the winter?

Winter in Raglan is far from dreary. In fact, while the temperatures dip, the spirit of adventure rises, making Raglan a magnet for those who love engaging in outdoor activities.


Surfing is undeniably the star attraction in Raglan, especially during the winter. The cooler months bring consistent swells that create perfect waves for surfing. Despite the chill, the water and air temperatures remain manageable, making it an ideal time for seasoned surfers to hit the waves.

Schools like the Raglan Surfing School and Green Wave Raglan ensure that beginners and intermediates can also join in on the fun. Raglan Surf Co. also caters to winter surfers, offering surfboards.

Other Water Sports

While surfing is the main draw, Raglan offers other water sports that are equally engaging. Kiteboarding is a popular activity, with the winter winds providing perfect conditions for this exhilarating sport. Kayaking and paddleboarding are other options for those looking to explore the tranquil waters of Raglan Harbour.

Raglan Watersports, a local company, offers a plethora of activities, including kiteboarding, paddleboarding, kayaking, and kayak fishing. The ever-changing waters of Raglan Harbour ensure a thrilling experience for all.

Coastal Walks and Hikes in Raglan

One of the most popular hiking trails in Raglan is the Mount Karioi summit track. This ancient, extinct volcano offers two main tracks: the Karioi Summit Track and the Wairake Track.

Both tracks are challenging yet rewarding, offering panoramic views of the Tasman Sea, the Waikato region, and, on a clear day, Mount Taranaki.

The Karioi Summit Track, a 3 to 4-hour one-way trail, is a tough yet thrilling hike. With the first lookout approximately 2.5 hours into the journey, hikers can rest and enjoy the stunning vistas before pushing on to the summit.

Another must-visit trail is the Pipiwharauroa Trail. This relatively easy walk follows the old railway line through native bush, farmland, and stunning coastal views. Information panels along the way provide insights into the area’s rich history and wildlife.

For those seeking a coastal walk, the Te Paki Coastal Track near Raglan offers a memorable experience. This backpacking trail provides breathtaking views of the coastline, weaving through rugged cliffs and black-sand beaches.

 Art Galleries

Raglan is home to a thriving arts scene, hosting numerous galleries and studios that feature work from talented local artisans.

One such place is the Jet Collective, highly recommended for its eclectic collection. Another must-visit is the Toi Hauauru Studio, which showcases a variety of artworks, from traditional Maori carvings to contemporary pieces.

The Made Gallery Raglan is another notable stop, displaying high-quality local creations ranging from pottery and jewellery to paintings and flax weavings. These galleries not only offer visitors a chance to appreciate local art but also provide an opportunity to take a piece of Raglan’s creative spirit home. 


For history enthusiasts, the Raglan & District Museum is a treasure trove. This museum offers fascinating insights into the town’s past, with exhibits covering a wide range of topics, from local Maori history to the evolution of surfing in the region.

Another intriguing site is Rivet Vintage, a unique space that offers a blend of a museum and a vintage store. Here, you can explore a diverse collection of antiques and collectibles, each telling the story of a bygone era. 

The Raglan Old School Arts Centre serves as a hub for arts and crafts in the area. Housed in a beautiful heritage native timber building, it hosts gallery exhibitions, arts and crafts for sale, and various arts and hobby classes. It’s a place where art, history, and community come together, making it a must-visit spot.