Where’s Good to Swim this Summer?

We all like to enjoy a dip outdoors during the Summer months, however before you make the splash – make sure it’s safe to swim.

Do you know which beaches will be patrolled over the summer holidays?

Swimming on BeachesSurf Rescue Lifeguard at Waikuku Beach

For safety of the whole family, swim between the flags at a lifeguard-patrolled beach.

Waikuku Beach is patrolled every weekend from 11am – 5pm until 14 March, and weekdays from 10am-6pm until 29 January.

Woodend and Pegasus beaches will also be patrolled seven days a week between 10am and 6pm until 15 January 2021.

Swim Safe Tips
  • Choose a life-guarded beach and swim between the flags.
  • Rips are a major hazard on New Zealand beaches and can be deadly. Learn the 3Rs Rip Survival Plan – it could save your life!
  • Know your limits – don’t overestimate your abilities and underestimate the conditions.
  • Get a friend to swim with you – never swim or surf alone.
  • Find out more beach safety tips by visiting Surf Life Saving New Zealand.

Cars and dogs shouldn’t be in the area around the swim flags, visit the Council’s beaches page to find out more about the rules around beach activities and the Northern Pegasus Bay Bylaw.

River and Lake Swimming

In hot and dry conditions, some rivers can be susceptible to elevated E.coli levels or the presence of toxic algae, which is particularly dangerous for dogs and small children.

It’s important to check rivers and lakes are safe for swimming by checking the Land Air Water Aotearoa (LAWA) website. This shows the latest water monitoring results so you can decide where’s best to swim wherever you are in New Zealand.

The LAWA Swim Smart checklist includes checking water quality monitoring results on their website, not swimming for 2-3 days after heavy rain, and avoiding rivers and lakes where there are potentially toxic algae blooms present.

Learn what to look for in lakes and rivers to be aware if toxic algae is present:
ECan - Potentially toxic cyanobacteria (pdf)

Indoor and Outdoor Pools

Waimakariri Aquatic Facilities are open every day over the holiday’s apart from Christmas Day.

Kaiapoi Aquatic Centre will be closed from 5-16 January for scheduled maintenance, however Dudley Park Aquatic Centre in Rangiora will be available during this time.

The outdoor pool in Oxford and very popular Waikuku paddling pool are also open. Check out the Aquatic Facilities page for more information and full holiday hours.

Fires and Fireworks

Waimakariri is now in a restricted fire season, which means most outdoor fires need a permit from Fire and Emergency NZ (FENZ).

With the heat and extreme dryness across the Waimakariri District, FENZ advise that people planning to celebrate the holiday period with fireworks should think again and leave them in the cupboard.

Fires are not allowed on the beach at any time of the year.