Mangawhai Camp


Junior Surf Camp at Mangawhai Heads

The annual Red Beach Junior Surf Camp at Mangawhai Heads is the highlight of the Red Beach Junior Surf calendar. The camp takes place in January each year and is a great way to meet other families in the club, for kids to learn new skills and, most importantly, have fun. No other club in the country runs anything quite like it.

Bookings for 2021 now open

For the 2020/21 surf lifesaving season, Junior Surf Camp will run from Friday January 8 to Tuesday January 12, 2021

The camp format will be as follows:

  • Friday Jan 8: Check in; first training session in the afternoon.
  • Saturday Jan 9: Ruakaka Interclub Carnival; club dinner at camp that night.
  • Sunday Jan 10: Surf training sessions, morning and afternoon.
  • Monday Jan 11: Survivor, followed by the traditional Survivor breakfast.
  • Tuesday Jan 12: Check out.

Bookings are now open and need to be made directly with the Mangawhai Heads Holiday Park. While we realise camp is still some time away, and there are so many unknowns at present for everyone, if you want to be guaranteed a site, you need to book now. Our camp is still within peak season and the campground will not hold our sites indefinitely. 

There are two options for securing a site:

  1. Book directly online at State you are with Red Beach Surf Club and provide your site number from last season in the notes if you want the same site. Online bookings need to be paid in full.
  1. Book via phone or email – (09) 431 4675 or State you are with Red Beach Surf Club and provide your site number if you want the same site. You will be asked for a deposit in July, with the balance due on November 15.

The process for registering for Survivor, the club dinner and Survivor breakfast will be communicated at the start of the 2020-21 season.

The programme

Training sessions are run by the club’s senior athletes and include estuary swims and knee boarding in the surf on the far side of the sand dunes. For the younger children, activities include boogey boarding and jumping off the estuary pontoon.

Activities are designed for all age and ability levels. It’s a chance for kids to gain confidence in a variety of conditions, including bigger surf than we usually get at Red Beach.

Fun for all the family

The rest of the day is free time. Children have access to all the club equipment and most bring their bikes so are riding, swimming, fishing, paddling and kayaking all day. For parents, camp is also a social time with special get-togethers for the adults, with and without their children.


Without a doubt, the highlight of the week is the legendary Survivor competition. Each of the year’s rookies leads a mixed-age team around an obstacle course that goes across the estuary and through the sand dunes.

The challenges each year are different but rookies need to show real leadership to get their whole team safely around the course using a range of surf lifesaving skills. The Survivor trophy is hotly-contested and every junior member at Red Beach wants to be able to say they have won Survivor.

For the younger, unbadged children there is also a Mini-Survivor with simpler challenges and a boat ride across the estuary instead of swimming. The event culminates in an enormous communal breakfast on the beach.

Check out a video from a previous season's Survivor below to see what it's all about.

For more information

To find out more about the Junior Surf Camp, please contact “Camp Mum”, Anita Savage on

To sign up for Survivor 2021, go to our registration portal and register before December 14.