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Rabbit Island (Moturoa) is the largest of a group of sandy islands lying in the Waimea Estuary at the head of Tasman Bay.

15 minutes drive from Richmond, along its seaward side there is more than eight kilometres of safe sandy beach. This is the largest picnic area in the district.

Much of the island is covered in pine plantations owned by the Tasman District Council. The Council has set aside a large area of land adjacent to the beach as a public reserve.

The beach and public reserves are open for use during daylight hours only throughout the year and may be closed during times of high fire risk.

Conifer Park Mountain Bike Tracks lie to the west of the Rabbit Island picnic areas. Conifer Park has 2 kilometres of singletrack suitable for riders of all abilities. In the weekend "The Secret Side of Moturoa Bike Track" is open around the perimeter of the western half of the island.

There is a perimeter road just above the beach around most of the island, popular with local walking groups. The public are not permitted to enter the forestry plantations.

The area around the Rabbit Island bridge is a popular spot for white-baiters, while surf-casting can be productive from the front beach.

The main beach at Rabbit Island is a safe swimming location, popular with locals and tourists. The back beach has a boat ramp adjacent to a water skiing area. Both beaches are monitored as part of the Swimming Water Quality monitoring programme.

The tidal waters also provide sustenance for many different sea birds. These include the white heron, royal spoonbill, shags and oyster catchers.

A very busy bank holiday

A very busy bank holiday

koruru

Map

map

11 reviews with the most recent first

Maire O'Grady's avatar

Maire O'Grady

Ireland

Ranking: 10/10

Beautiful beach walk and great facilities for picnics and toilets.

Reviewed about 1 year ago and experienced in October 2016

Josh Lesley-Smith's avatar

Josh Lesley-Smith

United Kingdom

Ranking: 10/10

Amazing picnic area, plenty of room to park, the beach is lovely and long, great for sunbathing.

Reviewed over 1 year ago and experienced in November 2016

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Lucy Millett's avatar

Lucy Millett

United Kingdom

Ranking: 9/10

Long stretch of beach, perfect for walking and when the tide is out you can swim. BBQ area, parking and toilets.

Reviewed over 1 year ago and experienced in November 2016

Jamie Serieux's avatar

Jamie Serieux

United Kingdom

Ranking: 9/10

Huge area with good facilities, cold showers and barbecues.

Reviewed almost 2 years ago and experienced in March 2016

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Funhui Temp's avatar

Funhui Temp

Korea, Democratic People's Republic of

Ranking: 9/10

Awesome! Warm water. Nice beach. Clean toilet, awesome! They close of 9:00pm. No camping here.

Reviewed almost 2 years ago and experienced in February 2016

Irene Marvelli's avatar

Irene Marvelli

Italy

Ranking: 8/10

Lots of local fauna and a beautiful sea.

Reviewed almost 2 years ago and experienced in February 2016

Thank You - to the thousands of travellers that have contributed to our Top Voted NZ Activities Map - it's free from Rankers.

Laura Heyoer's avatar

Laura Heyoer

Germany

Ranking: 10/10

Great place to relax and swim.

Reviewed about 2 years ago and experienced in February 2016

Sabrina Mandel's avatar

Sabrina Mandel

Germany

Ranking: 9/10

The beach is so big, you find a place to relax, but not too close to other people.

Reviewed about 2 years ago and experienced in February 2016

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Dawn Howard's avatar

Dawn Howard

United Kingdom

Ranking: 8/10

Lots of choice and plenty of shaded areas to run - good for a chat with other horsey ladies.

Reviewed about 2 years ago

Lea's avatar

Lea

Germany

Ranking: 9/10

Great beach, nice views to Nelson on one side and the Abel Tasman on the other side. Maybe a little kiosk would be nice.

Reviewed over 2 years ago and experienced in December 2015

David and Sally Wallis's avatar

David and Sally Wallis

United Kingdom

Ranking: 9/10

Lovely empty beaches.

Reviewed over 5 years ago

11 reviews with the most recent first

Maire O'Grady's avatar

Maire O'Grady

Ireland

Ranking: 10/10

Beautiful beach walk and great facilities for picnics and toilets.

Reviewed about 1 year ago and experienced in October 2016

Josh Lesley-Smith's avatar

Josh Lesley-Smith

United Kingdom

Ranking: 10/10

Amazing picnic area, plenty of room to park, the beach is lovely and long, great for sunbathing.

Reviewed over 1 year ago and experienced in November 2016

Conservation Campsite Pass

Save up to 70% on campsite fees! Support conservation and experience the natural beauty of NZ. 95 Department of Conservation campsites, one convenient pass.

Get the Pass

Lucy Millett's avatar

Lucy Millett

United Kingdom

Ranking: 9/10

Long stretch of beach, perfect for walking and when the tide is out you can swim. BBQ area, parking and toilets.

Reviewed over 1 year ago and experienced in November 2016

Jamie Serieux's avatar

Jamie Serieux

United Kingdom

Ranking: 9/10

Huge area with good facilities, cold showers and barbecues.

Reviewed almost 2 years ago and experienced in March 2016

Top Ranked NZ Deals Pass

Access savings worth hundreds of $$ on Top Ranked NZ Accommodation and Activities for just $1 per day.

Get deals pass

Funhui Temp's avatar

Funhui Temp

Korea, Democratic People's Republic of

Ranking: 9/10

Awesome! Warm water. Nice beach. Clean toilet, awesome! They close of 9:00pm. No camping here.

Reviewed almost 2 years ago and experienced in February 2016

Irene Marvelli's avatar

Irene Marvelli

Italy

Ranking: 8/10

Lots of local fauna and a beautiful sea.

Reviewed almost 2 years ago and experienced in February 2016

Thank You - to the thousands of travellers that have contributed to our Top Voted NZ Activities Map - it's free from Rankers.

Laura Heyoer's avatar

Laura Heyoer

Germany

Ranking: 10/10

Great place to relax and swim.

Reviewed about 2 years ago and experienced in February 2016

Sabrina Mandel's avatar

Sabrina Mandel

Germany

Ranking: 9/10

The beach is so big, you find a place to relax, but not too close to other people.

Reviewed about 2 years ago and experienced in February 2016

Camping NZ App Icon

Camping NZ App

Every camping site on your iPhone™, iPad™ or Android™ phone or tablet. Avoid camping penalties using this council approved app. Featuring offline maps.

Download from the App Store Download Android app on Google Play

Dawn Howard's avatar

Dawn Howard

United Kingdom

Ranking: 8/10

Lots of choice and plenty of shaded areas to run - good for a chat with other horsey ladies.

Reviewed about 2 years ago

Lea's avatar

Lea

Germany

Ranking: 9/10

Great beach, nice views to Nelson on one side and the Abel Tasman on the other side. Maybe a little kiosk would be nice.

Reviewed over 2 years ago and experienced in December 2015

David and Sally Wallis's avatar

David and Sally Wallis

United Kingdom

Ranking: 9/10

Lovely empty beaches.

Reviewed over 5 years ago