A just-launched index has revealed New Zealand's best and worst swimming spots - with some popular sites listed as no-go zones among almost 700 rivers, lakes, and beaches.
The updated LAWA (Land, Air, Water Aotearoa) website now features an online tool that lets people check on their local spots before they head for a dip.
The project is a partnership between 16 regional councils, the Ministry for the Environment and the Cawthron Institute.
Among around 40 spots currently listed as "unsuitable for swimming" was the pools at the top of Gisborne's famous Rere Rockslide and 10 beach sites in Auckland.
NORTHLAND: Hatea River, Whangarei Falls; Kerikeri River at the Stone Store; Kerikeri River at Rainbow Falls; Tirohanga River at Tirohanga Road;
AUCKLAND: Armour Bay; Christmas Beach; Clarks Beach; Fosters Bay; Green Bay Beach; Judges Bay; Huia Beach; Mellons Bay; Te Atatu Beach; Titirangi Beach
BAY OF PLENTY: Kaiate Stream; Lake Okaro; Whakatane River
GISBORNE/HAWKES BAY: Rere Rockslide (top); Rere Falls; Clive River (at boat ramp); Tukituki River (at Black Bridge, Haumoana)
MANAWATU/WHANGANUI: Hautapu River (at Papakai Park); Kahuterawa Stream (at Sledge Track)
WELLINGTON: Akatarawa River (at Hutt confluence); Hutt River (at Birchville, Maoribank Corner, Melling Bridge, Poets Park, and Silverstream Bridge).
CANTERBURY: Ashburton River (at SH1); Avon River (at Kerrs Beach); Kaiapoi River (at boat ramp); Lake Hood (at marina site); Lyell Creek (at lagoon); Pareora River (at Pareora Huts); Selwyn River (at Coes Ford and Upper Huts).
OTAGO/SOUTHLAND: Kakanui River (at Clifton Falls Bridge); Lake Hayes (at Mill Creek shallows); Aparima River (at Thornbury);
NORTHLAND: Cooper's Beach; Ngunguru Estuary at school
AUCKLAND: Cornwallis Beach; French Bay; Mulberry Grove; Narrow Neck Beach; Orere Pt Beach; Pah Beach
WAIKATO: Acacia Bay, Lake Taupo
BAY OF PLENTY: Ngongotaha Stream; Waihi Beach
TARANAKI: Kaupokonui River (at Beach Domain); Manganui River (at Everett Park); Onaero Beach (at surf life saving club); Patea River (at King Edward Park scout den); Timaru Stream (at end of Weld Rd); Waingongoro River (at Eltham Presbyterian Camp)
MANAWATU/WHANGANUI: Hokio Stream (at Muaupoko Street Bridge); Lake Wiritoa; Mowhanau Stream (at footbridge); Ongarue River (Cherry Grove); Hokio Beach
TASMAN/MARLBOROUGH: Taylor River at at Riverside Park
WEST COAST/CANTERBURY: Buller River at Marrs Beach; Kaniere River (at Kaniere-Kokatahi Rd Bridge); Gooches Beach; Waihao River
OTAGO/SOUTHLAND: Taieri River (at Waipata); New River Estuary (at Omaui)
This article was first published on NZ Herald and is republished here with permission.