New Zealand is one of the places that fly somewhat beneath the radar on the surf front. We have an international reputation as being a clean green country, but New Zealand is not high on the international radar when it comes to surf. Maybe it’s the fact that our oceans are that much colder, or maybe it’s the fact that half of the world doesn’t even know where New Zealand is? Whatever the reason, we’re quite happy to keep our own little piece of surf paradise to ourselves. This has not stopped New Zealand producing some world class surfers, however, with Paige Hareb and Maz Quinn our two most successful international surfers to date. Last year Raglan’s Billy Stairmand became a world known name when he beat the legendary Kelly Slater and Sarah Mason was one step away from qualifying for the World Tour. In the recent Nationals held at Piha, Thandi Tipene shone taking out the main event from some on form rivals.
Although surfers (and Kiwis in particular) are somewhat reluctant to share their waves, Taranaki has stepped up to the plate once more and in April this year will be hosting the TSB Bank New Zealand Surf Festival. The past two years have been a huge success and this year the event will host even more events. Be sure to look out for your favourite international surfers as well as the next generation of local surfers biting at their heels. This is an event you do not want to miss!