Well known for its long stretch of golden sand, gentle waves and scarlett pohutukawa blooms all summer, Takapuna is the heart and soul of Auckland's North Shore. And now there's a whole strip of great restaurants, bars and cafes that all have amazing views of Takapuna Beach. Whether you have a visitor in town who wants to enjoy an ice-cold Kiwi brew or do brunch every Sunday with your best mate, these three Takapuna Beach restaurants are hot to trot. We got the lowdown so you can select the right seaside spot for you and if it rocks your socks, why not share your love for it on their Localist listing?
For brunch or craft brews... Franc's
Bask in the sun on the brightly coloured chairs outside this great example of a local eatery and watch the hustle and bustle of Takapuna go by. Franc's has a dedicated breakfast menu (our pick is the indulgently delish buttermilk waffles or, if you love to go healthy, try the signature paleo muesli). And then they roll straight into lunch and dinner. We love the fact the stars on this menu are as Kiwi as it gets. From Kokako organic coffee to Black Dog craft brews and Kapiti ice cream, there's so many goodies here. But our hit pick has to be the mouth-watering Angus Beef short rib burger. Team this heavenly stack of pickles, cheese, beef and fries (of course!) with a Bloody Mary or brew, a view of the sea and jandals on your feet. Priceless!
For fresh-as seafood & sushi... Tokyo Bay
Well worth travelling over the Bridge for, this is incredible Japanese food with an even better view. Not only does the team at Tokyo Bay do some of the freshest sushi and sashimi in the business, they've also got the pedigree to prove it. Their head chef Chikara Sato is a specialist Fugu (blowfish) chef, meaning he slices and dices with great accuracy (it takes up to seven years of training before a chef in Japan is licensed to carve up and serve the highly prized yet deadly blowfish). He's joined by well-known Auckland restaurateur Sarasa Shimura (the woman behind popular Ponsonby spots Soto and Tokyo Club) and the result is lip-smackingly good sashimi and sushi that's as fresh as the ocean you look at. Great for a night out with your friends or a romantic date.
For impressing your visitors... Regatta
The hot new kid on the block, Regatta takes prime corner position with a massive deck and outdoor seating area, meaning there's plenty of room to drink in the views and people watch. There's lots of tasty seafood-inspired dishes on the menu and, with its proximity to the water, it's a great place to take overseas visitors. Understand that this is where Takapuna's well-heeled set now like to hob nob so dress smart and wear a great pair of shades if you want to fit in with the crowd. All aboard!