Hokianga Harbour at Opononi

Opononi, Northland

Ompononi Beach is lined with pohutakawa trees, enormous sand dunes and a beautiful harbour. The area was made famous in the 1950s by Opo, the bottlenose dolphin. Opo was the first documented wild dolphin that would play with people and even let small children ride her. On March 8th, 1956, after local pressure, and official law was passed protecting her. The following day she was found dead in a rock crevice. It is unknown how she died but she received an honorary M?ori burial next to the War Memorial Hall.

According to tradition, this land was originally discovered by Kupe, a legendary Polynesian explorer and navigator settled in the region in 925 AD. It is thought to be the oldest M?ori settlement. The Ngapuhi tribe inhabited the area in the 14th century until the 1800's when the first European ship landed in the harbour. Deforestation of Hokianga begun soon after but the Waipoua Forest was spared. It is New Zealand's largest rainforest.

COVID-19

Keep your distance from other people.

Practicing social distancing is still essential. Only go to the beach if you are able to keep 6 feet or 2 meters away from others. Follow the instructions provided by your local health authorities. If your community has asked that you remain indoors and away from others, do so. Spending a day in any crowded place is the worst thing we can do for our most vulnerable right now and will counter our efforts to curb the virus’s spread.

Water Quality
  • Passed water quality tests at least 95% of the time

  • Historical Status
  • This status is based on the latest sample, taken on February 20th, 2022. The Swim Guide - New Zealand updates the status of this beach as soon as test results become available. These results were posted to Swim Guide on February 20th, 2022 at 4:25 PM.
For water quality icon legend, click:  
Monitoring Frequency

Hokianga Harbour at Opononi is sampled weekly from December 1st to March 1st.

Source Information

Northland Regional Council monitors water quality at popular swimming beaches throughout the Northland region.
Water quality data on Swim Guide is sourced from the LAWA Can I Swim Here? website. www.lawa.org.nz/swim

At this site, water is regularly tested for levels of Enterococci during the summer months. This faecal indicator bacteria is used to indicate the level of harmful pathogens in the water.

See information on recreational water quality monitoring in New Zealand in this LAWA factsheet: https://www.lawa.org.nz/learn/factsheets/coastal-and-freshwater-recreation-monitoring/

Beach sites are shown as a GREEN swim icon if the latest Enterococci test result was in the range of 0 - 280 Enterococci / 100 mL.

Beach sites are shown as a RED swim icon if the latest test result exceeded 280 Enterococci / 100 mL or frequently exceeds the standard or there is a temporary water quality issue outside the routine testing programme (e.g. sewage overflow).

See information on the standards for recreational water quality monitoring in New Zealand in the 'What do the swim icons mean?' LAWA factsheet.

LAWA recommends for all sites, to avoid swimming for 2 - 3 days after significant rain, even for sites that normally have good water quality.

A good rule of thumb is to check that you can see your toes in knee deep water.

See www.lawa.org.nz/swim for up to date information on current warnings and alerts, weather conditions, tides, real-time water temperatures, what facilities are available, the monitoring history at this site and helpful factsheets.

Read more
Water Quality Graph

Hokianga Harbour at Opononi

Opononi, Northland

COVID-19

Keep your distance from other people.

Practicing social distancing is still essential. Only go to the beach if you are able to keep 6 feet or 2 meters away from others. Follow the instructions provided by your local health authorities. If your community has asked that you remain indoors and away from others, do so. Spending a day in any crowded place is the worst thing we can do for our most vulnerable right now and will counter our efforts to curb the virus’s spread.

Water Quality
  • Passed water quality tests at least 95% of the time
  • Historical Status
  • This status is based on the latest sample, taken on February 20th, 2022. The Swim Guide - New Zealand updates the status of this beach as soon as test results become available. These results were posted to Swim Guide on February 20th, 2022 at 4:25 PM.
For water quality icon legend, click:  

Ompononi Beach is lined with pohutakawa trees, enormous sand dunes and a beautiful harbour. The area was made famous in the 1950s by Opo, the bottlenose dolphin. Opo was the first documented wild dolphin that would play with people and even let small children ride her. On March 8th, 1956, after local pressure, and official law was passed protecting her. The following day she was found dead in a rock crevice. It is unknown how she died but she received an honorary M?ori burial next to the War Memorial Hall.

According to tradition, this land was originally discovered by Kupe, a legendary Polynesian explorer and navigator settled in the region in 925 AD. It is thought to be the oldest M?ori settlement. The Ngapuhi tribe inhabited the area in the 14th century until the 1800's when the first European ship landed in the harbour. Deforestation of Hokianga begun soon after but the Waipoua Forest was spared. It is New Zealand's largest rainforest.

Monitoring Frequency

Hokianga Harbour at Opononi is sampled weekly from December 1st to March 1st.

Source Information

Northland Regional Council monitors water quality at popular swimming beaches throughout the Northland region.
Water quality data on Swim Guide is sourced from the LAWA Can I Swim Here? website. www.lawa.org.nz/swim

At this site, water is regularly tested for levels of Enterococci during the summer months. This faecal indicator bacteria is used to indicate the level of harmful pathogens in the water.

See information on recreational water quality monitoring in New Zealand in this LAWA factsheet: https://www.lawa.org.nz/learn/factsheets/coastal-and-freshwater-recreation-monitoring/

Beach sites are shown as a GREEN swim icon if the latest Enterococci test result was in the range of 0 - 280 Enterococci / 100 mL.

Beach sites are shown as a RED swim icon if the latest test result exceeded 280 Enterococci / 100 mL or frequently exceeds the standard or there is a temporary water quality issue outside the routine testing programme (e.g. sewage overflow).

See information on the standards for recreational water quality monitoring in New Zealand in the 'What do the swim icons mean?' LAWA factsheet.

LAWA recommends for all sites, to avoid swimming for 2 - 3 days after significant rain, even for sites that normally have good water quality.

A good rule of thumb is to check that you can see your toes in knee deep water.

See www.lawa.org.nz/swim for up to date information on current warnings and alerts, weather conditions, tides, real-time water temperatures, what facilities are available, the monitoring history at this site and helpful factsheets.

Read more
Water Quality Graph

  Beach Location Water Quality
Opononi, Northland
Rawene, Northland
Waipoua Kauri Forest, Northland
Northland, Northland
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