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New Zealand is well known as one of the worlds Premiere surf spots. Many surfers are now choosing to avoid the crowds of the famous surf destinations such as Indonesia, Hawaii and Australia's Gold Coast and are opting to travel down to the fresh, remote surf paradise, New Zealand. N.Z. is made up of three islands, the North, the South and just below the South Island is a tiny place called Stewart Island. The North Island is home to many quality surf breaks. On the West Coast is the very popular left hand wave, Raglan (Above photo). Raglan's rugged and rocky coastline is the prime setup for the 6-8 reefing lefthand rock / reef breaks and 2-3 beach breaks. The surf spots vary from slow and full waves at high tide, ideal for learners and grommets and as the tide sucks out... so do the waves which soon produce very hollow and unforgiving waves for the chargers and more experienced surfers. 

Just 3 hours down the coast is another epic surf spot called New Plymouth (Taranaki). New Plymouth is very similar to Raglan with its' rugged coastline and well known point breaks, but unlike Raglan this place has a selection of right hand points as well as lefts. What is special about this place is that not only is it famous for its' waves, it's also world renowned for its' winter snow fields. You can often find yourself sitting in the water at Stent Road (pictured left) looking back in amazement at the famous ice caped Mount Egmont, which truly turns your frozen hands and feet to reality. Although the South Island has temperatures of below zero in winter, there are still plenty of surfers who are very keen to surf the frozen waters. There are a variety of beaches and points on this island; the main spot being St Claire beach in Dunedin where all the local South Island competitions are held. In winter there are many South groundswells which produce some very monstrous breaks; that maybe why NZ's prestigious 'Big Wave Challenge' is held down that way. So if you are keen enough to surf all wrapped up in a 5/4 steamer, kidney belt, vest, booties and a hood and still have the chance of being chased out of the water by a huge, angry seal, then the South Island of NZ is for you.