Karekare, West Auckland

Karekare is a small coastal settlement in the Auckland region of northern New Zealand, nestled between the Waitākere range and a large black sand surf beach.

It is situated 35 kilometres (22 mi) west of the city centre of Auckland, south of the larger beach of Piha. It is situated north of Whatipu, south of Piha and west of the Centennial Memorial Park and Water Catchment area, which covers most of the native Waitākere ranges.

Karekare is a popular summer destination for the Aucklanders, but receives fewer visitors than the nearby Piha, partially because the road is narrow and only recently sealed. There’s a beach patrol in the summer.

The track to the base of Waitakere’s waterfall — Karekare falls — is a short walk from the road. The track to the top of the falls is now closed to help avoid the spread of the incurable Kauri disease.

The settlement was immortalised in Crowded House’s song on their 1993 album Together Alone, much of which was recorded in Karekare; the well-known Dub / Reggae band, Salmonella Dub, also used the name on their album Feel the Seasons Change-Live with the NZSO. The place would also be familiar to viewers of the film The Piano, which included beach scenes shot at Karekar and Piha.

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