“A beautiful coastal route to deserted Victory Beach.”
— Almonzo Wilder
Dogs are prohibited.
An easy rolling walk across the Okia Flat to a wild ocean beach. Miles of beach walking or running is possible at low tide.
Features: Swimming — Wildlife
Dogs: No Dogs
Need to Know
Give wildlife a wide berth on the beach and be mindful of the tides. Victory Beach has very little sand in some places at high tide.
A premier wild beach run so long as the tide isn't high.
From the carpark, jump over the stile at the gated trailhead. The beginning of the trail is a straight shot through fenced paddock, with sheep and wetland birds on either side. Looming on the horizon are the unique Pyramids - one large and one small, and both the result of volcanic activity. Once across the paddocks, a second gate marks arrival to the Okia Reserve. Again, climb over the gate at the stile, and scramble up the marked path to the top of Little Pyramid (about 10 minutes return). Views from the summit take in the entire Okia Flat, Wickliffe Bay, and headlands along the Otago Peninsula.
Heading back to the trail a nearby junction is signed for the "Loop Trail" to the left, or "Beach Access" to the right. Both tracks actually lead fairly directly to the beach. To make a bit of a loop, head left at the signed intersection and then right on a fire road that heads straight toward the ocean at a second intersection. Some ups and downs over the ancient dune lines can be steep. As you approach the beach, be on the lookout for seals, sea lions and penguins that can be in the vegetation behind the beach. The last line of dunes has a sharp drop that deposits you on the sand.
At low tide, you can head up and down for many kilometers on Victory Beach. The sand can be soft, and watch for animals (penguins, sea lions and seals) and the rising tide. At very high tides the water can come right to the dune line. At the south end of the beach is the 1861 shipwreck of the Victory, remains of which are visible at low tide.
When you're tired of the sand, you can return to the car the way you came, or find the more southern path from the beach that will close the loop that started near the entrance to Okia Reserve.